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Eight Grades Are Enough

white and black scoop-neck top hanging on wall
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

The Amish, an extremely conservative Christian movement, live strictly according to the Bible.  It’s a different world. Most of them, about a quarter of a million, live in the states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and Indiana.

The Amish are known for their simple lifestyle and rejection of many of the achievements of modern technological progress. They don’t recognize cars, and they still ride horses. They don’t watch TV, ignore the radio, the Internet. A significant part of them do not smoke and do not drink alcoholic beverages. They get education in their own stand-alone building of Amish schoolhouse, which was especially built by the community for educational purposes.

white and brown house on green grass field during daytime
Photo by Brad Weaver on Unsplash

The Amish are a closed community, where there are many closely related marriages and a high level of hereditary diseases. However, most Amish see this as the will of God and in many cases reject genetics. On the other hand, the cancer rate among Amish is much lower than the national average. This is often associated with their healthy lifestyle, with the fact that the Amish do not use electricity in the house and wear long dark clothes that protect them from sunlight while working outdoors, and in addition, they wear hats everywhere. In the home environment, the Amish mostly speak the dialect of German, and their children learn English at school.

According to Amish tradition, children do not go to school after the eighth grade: at this age, the Amish believe, it’s time for them to help on the farm or do other work to help their families. The decision of the US Supreme Court in the 1960s allowed the Amish to drop out of school early, since their religious traditions originated long before state education laws.It is extremely difficult to becoming an Amish, if you were not born in their community: you need to go through a long period of trials and life among them. The food that the Amish grow and produce is highly valued in stores and farmers’ markets in America.

man and woman riding horse carriage
Photo by Randy Fath on Unsplash

In addition to private lands, the Amish also maintain public fields under the supervision of the Council of Elders. With the proceeds from the sale of crops from these fields, local residents maintain roads in proper condition, pay salaries to school teachers, a blacksmith, a midwife.