Homeschooling, Westmoreland Homesteads, Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania, 1936
Recent data collected by the Department of Education reveals homeschooling has grown by 61.8% over the last 10 years to the point where two million kids — 4% of the total youth population — now learn from the comfort of their own home.Yes; and contrary to the control freaks in much of the public (and some private) education business. I understand their fear - besides the elitist notion that "we know best", paid educators are also concerned about protecting their turf. That's a natural reaction, but not one that has the *best interests of the child at heart.
Contrary to the belief that homeschooling produces anti-social outcasts, the truth is that some of the most high-achieving, well-adjusted students are poring over math problems at their kitchen table, not a desk in a classroom. According to leading pedagogical research, at-home instruction may just be the most relevant, responsible, and effective way to educate children in the 21st century.
And BI gets this right as well:
The biggest stereotype surrounding homeschooling is that constant one-on-one teaching deprives kids of the socialization they need to thrive. Not so. Homeschooled kids are just as likely to play soccer and do group projects as any other students.We've had that discussion here before.
Click here to read the BI piece.
And another recent piece points out that African-American families are increasingly joining the homeschooling movement as well. African-American public school teacher turned homeschooling Mom Nikita Bush, was recently quoted in the Christian Science Monitor as saying:
“people are starting to realize that public education in America was designed for the masses of poor, and its intent has been to trap poor people into being workers and servants. If you don’t want that for your children, then you look for something else,” she says. To her, the biggest flaw in public education is a lack of character education, an "absence of a moral binding," that contributes to low expectations – and lower outcomes for children of color.The CSM piece adds:
The reasons black parents cite for home-schooling their children cover a wide range. Some sound similar to the homeschooling movement as a whole: religious beliefs, a desire to shelter children from an increasingly crass or materialistic society, a conviction that they are best-suited to teach their kids the values they need to live a fulfilling life.You can read the interesting CSM piece here.
I will add that we are currently in the infant stages of a similar movement when it comes to college education as well - and for many of the same reasons. What many have referred to as the democratization of education is making much of this possible. Technology has reshaped how we learn much more than some realize. Regardless, the dinosaurs in academia and government schools who continue to advocate a centralized, top-down approach to education will stubbornly fight on to protect their turf. They are fighting for their own relevance.
But the genie is out of the bottle. Parents are taking back control of the education of their children from the "experts." The failure of the bloated education industry, with its misdirected priorities, will be the reason for its own demise.
*As always, I acknowledge that there are dedicated teachers in public and private education that do have the best interests of their students at heart. Those teachers have my appreciation and prayers. But that does not change the facts of the education establishment and its failures in general.