Wednesday, June 4, 2008

In case you missed it.

From Parade Magazine (1 June 2008)

Should Home-Schooling Be Illegal?

In February, a California state appeals court ruled that unless parents have recognized teaching credentials, they must send their children to school. The judge, citing a state education law, said that “parents do not have a constitutional right to home-school their children.” Parents and politicians were outraged, and the court will rehear the case this

At stake is the education of the 166,000 California children who currently are home-schooled. But the court decision also could influence laws across the country. Nationwide, up to 2 million children are taught at home. Experts estimate that the number is increasing 7% to 12% a year.

“If upheld, the California ruling will send shock waves nationwide,” says Richard Kahlenberg, the author of a number of books on education. He says the case “pits those who believe parental rights are paramount against those who place a premium on well-educated citizens.”

Right now, only six states have strict regulations for home-schooling, usually requiring parents to have their curriculum approved, to show test scores and, in some places, to submit to home visits. Fourteen states, including California, mandate only that parents notify the state of their decision to home-school.

LBQ: What is the most important sentence in this report?

Richard Kahlenberg implying that parents who have chosen to teach their children at home value flexing their parental rights over their children's education, and then equating recognized teacher credentials with well-educated citizens. But wait, this brief statement he may gloss over, but exposes the fact that the goal of institutionalized education (let's face it, primarily government institutions which insist upon government recognized teaching credentials) is to make well-educated citizens. Not well-educated individuals, but citizens.

What exactly is meant by that? That children, taught by teachers with recognized teaching credentials will be better able to make decisions regarding their lives with respect to the world around them? I think not. More likely, this means that those children will perpetuate the one-size fits all government education pap fed to them in pre-digested pieces year after year in those schools which is in no way related to individual education, but rather societal norms.

I do not in anyway suggest that every child is better served by learning at home; only that those of us who choose to educate our children at home have a selfish interest in seeing our children succeed as individuals, not as a by-product of, or sacrificial gift to society.

1 comment:

Kim said...

That's one of the many problems with government control. Who gets to decide the goal of education?