I invite you to join discussions, it enhances the reading experience for everyone. Please share your thoughts, opinions and knowledge in a respectful manner. May we all learn something in our endeavor to educate our hearts and minds. I look forward to hearing from you!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Is Home Schooling Being Schooled?

I was forwarded an email by a concerned friend.  She is one of many who are making the switch from sending their children through the public educational system and choosing to home school instead. 

While I do not home school, I believe this is a right every parent should have as long as their children are legitimately educated.  One way to assure their education meets national standards is by ACT Score, SAT score and overall college performance.  This is not a post about home schooling standards and how to judge curriculum, because to be honest, I know very little about it. 

I do know however, that there is a growing trend of taxpaying parents who are choosing to home school their children.  I emphasize taxpaying because these parents are paying taxes for public educational systems that they are not using.  This means other children benefit from their tax dollars and a reduced number of children attending the school system.  Win win for the public schools that are under pressure to meet educational standards on a decreased budget while class sizes are ever increasing in volume.  

So back to the topic of this post:  The email she sent me is in regards to the NEA, National Education Association, and the resolutions recently passed.  

One resolution that caught my attention, among the plethora of resolutions, related to homeschooling. 

B-82. Home Schooling. The National Education Association believes that home
schooling programs based on parental choice cannot provide the student with a
comprehensive education experience. When home schooling occurs, students
enrolled must meet all state curricular requirements, including the taking and
passing of assessments to ensure adequate academic progress. Home schooling
should be limited to the children of the immediate family, with all expenses
being borne by the parents/guardians. Instruction should be by persons who are
licensed by the appropriate state education licensure agency, and a curriculum
approved by the state department of education should be used

The Association also believes that home-schooled students should not participate
in any extracurricular activities in the public schools.

I took the liberty of bolding a few key words for you.  Let’s break this down:

For starters, what I take out of this is that only immediate family can educate a child.  Does this mean grandparents can no longer have that honor/responsibility?  What about Aunts/Uncles, are they not allowed to home school a niece/nephew as they educate their own children? 

Next, I see that one has to have a State Education License to be allowed to teach home school.  While I do believe there is concern that the parents/grandparents/whoever teaching actually be literate, why should they have to have a teaching certification?  What if they happen to have other college degrees?   If a child can meet a national test, why does it matter the degree/certification, or lack thereof, of the person who educated them?

CURRICULUM APPROVED BY THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION!!!  Are you serious?  Part of the reason many of the people I know are leaving the public educational system is they do not like the curriculum.  Some want a more religious undertone, while others would like even less religion than what they are exposed to in the public arena.  Is this the government trying to control more of our thoughts and lives?  Are we turning into a government ran educational system where parents are not allowed input into what their children are learning?  One might remember from history that Hitler did a similar thing with the Hitler youth (please if you do not have much knowledge on this topic, do your homework before you start commenting, ignorance is no excuse to repeat history.  While there are many sites you can Google related to Nazi education, here is one site that sums it up nicely, http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/Nazis_Education.htm)

The last thing I find appalling in this resolution is that home schooled children are not to be allowed to participate in extracurricular activities in the public schools their parents pay tax dollars to?  Seriously?  I think the stupidity of this statement speaks for its self and I don’t need to elaborate.

So…What are your thoughts?  Do you home school your children, are you concerned with the NEA resolutions or do you feel this doesn’t concern you?  Do you have any additional knowledge to add?  As I stated I am not an expert and know very little about this.  I only know what my friends who home school share. 

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