Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Home schooling grows - USATODAY.com

"The ranks of America's home-schooled children have continued a steady climb over the past five years, and new research suggests broader reasons for the appeal.

The number of home-schooled kids hit 1.5 million in 2007, up 74% from when the Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics started keeping track in 1999, and up 36% since 2003. The percentage of the school-age population that was home-schooled increased from 2.2% in 2003 to 2.9% in 2007. 'There's no reason to believe it would not keep going up,' says Gail Mulligan, a statistician at the center."

Okay, but despite USA Today's take on the subject, according to parenting/education blog Just Enough and Nothing More, when it comes the rise of home-schooling, the media doesn't care.

Could be both. Home-schooled kids number almost 2 million, close to the number of prisoners in U.S. of part of A. jails, and We know what kind of money that population moves. It's been proven time and again that home-schooled kids do better in practically every measure of academic evaluations, so the growth in their numbers bodes well for the future of the country.

So if the mainstream media ignores it, does that matter? Seems to me it's far worse that state and national government agencies are making it more difficult to home-school, in which case, mainstream media silence is a problem.

2 comments:

Gabriel said...

I dunno about homeschooling. Maybe the kids really do better academically but what happens when they join adulthood, have a job or even college and they encounter authority figures that don't treat them as special and precious? Are they emotionally prepared for that?
I have met some homeschooling parents and kids and those kids are not socially prepared. The parents run after them with the Lysol wipes cleaning everything and sheltering the kids from anything that may involve actual work from the children. I just don't see the benefit.
Opinion colored by what I have seen from 3 families only so maybe they are doing it wrong...

CJ DePree said...

Gabriel-

I've seen it done well and I've seen it done poorly. I think the problem is when (as in your example) the parents want to shelter their children and keep an eye on them constantly. However, it goes both ways. The young American 17-year-old who just sailed around the world alone (!!!) is obviously home schooled, and certainly not sheltered or socially awkward. What an amazing accomplishment, and he couldn't have done it if he were attending school full time.

Dr. Francis X. Collins, head of the Human Genome Project, was home schooled (if you could even call it that) on a sheep farm in West Virginia. Many Rhodes Scholars, I believe, were home schooled as well. I could find a list of successful home schooled students if I had to, but you get my point.

I honestly believe that schooled children will have a harder time with authority figures when they realize no one cares about the 3.8 GPA and a score of 30-something on the ACT. They'll be the ones encountering "authority figures that don't treat them and special..." when grades were the only thing that mattered for such a long time.

Finally, some kids HATE school, just like some adults would hate certain jobs or careers. Could you imagine spending 12 years in a place you hated? Thank God homeschooling is an option for those children.

Anyway, that's all I've got to say for now on that. For more, read "Weapons of Mass Instruction" by John Taylor Gatto.

Curt