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A recent issue is loud in its praises of medical inspection...
Junction City (Ore.) Times
A recent issue is loud in its praises of medical inspection of school children through the medium of a county health nurse. No doubt this inspection of school children is highly desired by an interested class of persons, some of whom are innocently believing that such inspection will be productive of good results. But when we examine the records of cities and towns where thorough medical inspection has been in operation for some years, and find that the percentage of communicable diseases among school children has greatly increased since the system has been in use, and then go to other cities where after a trial it has been discontinued, and learn that since the discontinuance of medical inspection the percentage of communicable diseases has appreciably declined, we naturally question the results of medical inspection. The reason for this is not hard to find. The child is taught disease instead of health; he has it pictured to him; and the inspector by word or act continually suggests disease to him until through fear he imbibes it and thinks it, until it becomes manifest on his body. Fear, which is an accompanying agent with every school inspector, especially among the small children, is the most potent producer of disease. When we realize that about one half of the diagnoses made by the best trained men in the medical profestion in the best equipped hospitals of the United States are acknowledged to be wrong, it does not stand reason reason that even half the diagnoses made by school inspectors will be correct. If the diagnosis is wrong, how about the treatment which is expected to follow?
In the face of these facts parents are making an ever increasing protest against school inspection of any kind, and rightly so. There is no law in Oregon which authorizes medical inspection of school children. In our sister state of California those who believe that our public schools should be kept free from religious and medical control, have organized themselves into what is known as The Public School Protective League. This league is prosecuting every offender where the rights of school children are infringed. In this way they are impressing upon the public the fact that the "function of the public school is to educate—not to medicate." The time seems propitious for the people of Oregon not only to realize but to act upon the truth that the school is public, and not the child.
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