Getting Kindergarteners to Sit Still

It looks like the federal government is allocating $500 million in grants toward the "problem" of five-year-olds who "can't sit still" in kindergarten. Sigh. Here's the original article, quoting U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius:

"You really need to look at the range of issues, because if a 5-year-old can’t sit still, it is unlikely that they can do well in a kindergarten class, and it has to be the whole range of issues that go into healthy child development."

Quotes like this one reinforce my commitment to homeschooling through high school. I honestly believe that the education system in America is fundamentally flawed and that periodic tweaking by local, state or federal officials only exacerbates the problems inherent in compulsory schooling. Even if we give Sebelius the benefit of the doubt that she did not really mean that five-year-olds should be made to sit still in kindergarten, it's my opinion that the factory model of government schooling doesn't -- and can't-- provide enough opportunities for self-directed learning, individualized attention, and constructive social development.

My education goals for my kids involve helping them to discover their true talents and interests, cultivate a lifelong love of learning and reading and questioning, and spend the first couple of decades of their life being an integral part of their community and the environment. The last thing I want is for my kindergartener to learn to sit still.