Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Case Against Homeschooling

Edited - Jesse Scaccia contacted me with a complaint about reprinting the entire article here on my page, even though I have given the direct link and the proper credits to her to indicate that I did not write the article.

So --- I removed the article and kept the link.

I still think it is well worth your time to read - and respond - to this particular article that Ms. Scaccia has written. It will do wonders for your amusement factor.



The case against homeschooling

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Homeschooling: great for self-aggrandizing, society-phobic mother…… but not quite so good for the kid.

Here are my top ten reasons why homeschooling parents are doing the wrong thing:


The Prince of Centraxis said...

Sure, 'religious' nutters will champion home schooling - but their fishy tales of incompetent education are easily leavened by parents who teach gifted kids to think outside the box.
Most schools are fishy institutions designed to transform individuals with inquiring minds into robotic cogs.
The new millennium will hopefully provide new ways of learning and teaching to replace these industrial age factory-fodder producing monstrosities.


Sandy said...

I'm surprised home schooling has become as popular as it is in some areas. For some kids, it's a good start for others it's quite a set back. My biggest problem with it is how it attracts what I call fringe people. People who already have problems fitting in. Staying home with your kids, doesn't help them or the mother fit in better. However, I've had friends who've successfully gotten kids over some tough hurdles when they home schooled for a few years for a specific reason. Those kids then did join society and do well.

There are no hard and fast rules. What works for one, does not work for another. You'll not find 2 schools the same, or 2 teachers in the same school building who teach the same. Adjustments need to be made. Even the very best teacher doesn't or shouldn't teach the exact same thing the exact same way year after year. The mix of kids is different and they'll often need different things to get them going.

An issue I think sometimes over looked with the home school situation is, is Mom qualified to teach? I think many times that may not be the case. Is Mom qualified to teach because she loves her child vs a qualified educated, tested school teacher who is required to continue his or her education with additional classes, and seminars. I do question thats's in the best interest on a large scale.

The lack of structure in home school I also think can be a potential difference. Kids go to bed when they want, get up when they want, do their work when they want. At least this is what I observed in side homes of home schoolers when I made home visits. One of the lessons missed in the home school situation is you must be at school on time, you must do things on schedule, you must do your work with others around you often with many distractions. Home school doesn't give the opportunity to learn from a teacher they might not like. Some of these skills/lessons are necessary in the real world, in the work force, in the adult world. Haven't we all worked for a boss we didn't like? But, still you need to learn how to deal with it, and get your work done.

Stats show home school students rank high academically which is a positive thing for sure.

What I think would be a wonderful thing nationally is a true open discussion between public education, private education, and home school education. There are good and bad things about each. Wouldn't it be great for the kids if we could put aside the emotions that seem to come when discussing this important topic and come to a better version of education for all.

Mom said...


You are right. What works for one does not necessarily work for the other.

As for qualifications, an education to teach is not needed in a home school environment. For the most part, the classes that are taken by teachers deal with managing a classroom with multiple learning styles and personalities. They deal with managing the administrative side of teaching. It is not necessary to know how to handle 20 kids when you are in a home school environment. (I've taken all these education classes, so I know what I'm talking about.)

As for lack of structure, this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Personally, I have never thrived on structure, yet I was more than capable of adjusting to a regular job where I had to be there on time. In a home school environment, there are still many instances where a child has to learn about time management and being on time to places. There are also many chances to teach them how to work with people they may not like.

As an unschooler, we're very unstructured with our schooling here. We do still have bedtimes, though. We also have classes that we attend and doctor's appointments. These things teach the kids that being on time is important.

I think it is a common misconception that home schooled children are completely isolated from anybody else. This is not generally the case. Most home schoolers learn their social skills by living in the real world and interacting with a variety of people in a variety of settings.

I do believe open discussion is good. I also believe that the public system of education needs to be seriously reorganized. Even the best teachers in the system have a hard time teaching kids because of the way the system limits them to focusing on tests.

Chiara said...

I'm often disappointed by the hatred towards teachers that I often hear, that leads to homeschooling in many cases. I swear, we're not all like that!

I just hope that the parents are qualified and know what they're doing. I disagree with *some* of the home schooling practices I hear about- too many textbooks for example. But I don't like it when 'normal' teachers do that either. I just think, if you've got the advantage of having a class of only a few kids, USE it, and teach constructivistly!

Also I've seen some people's schedules with their kids and it seems to go by very fast, implying that a lot of parents are doing rote learning. I really hope that there's some proper accountability for parents.

Note: I am not accusing all homeschooling parents of doing anything like this. And I hate bad teachers as much as the rest of you.

Mom said...


I don't hate teachers. I dislike the system of education and how it focuses on the least common denominator, as well as the TEST.

One thing to remember about the rate of learning in a home environment is that topics can be covered much quicker because there is no need to wait for everybody to "get it" before moving on. The education is very individualized. There is also minimal time wasted on administrative tasks.

I hope you visit often and learn more about what we do as home schoolers.

Chiara said...

I was commenting generally about how there's negativity towards home schoolers but also a lot of negativity towards teachers.
I agree, smaller classes would be fantastic. Unfortunately I think it's pretty impossible for everyone to have!

From what I've seen so far, there's very little testing or 'lowest common denominator' focussing, in Australian schools. I think there's probably two standardised tests in primary school, and maybe four tests that the teacher organises herself, in the year. Maybe we're 'lucky', but it's a bit scary that we're starting to go more towards tests.

Yeah I'll visit often! I'm sure I can steal some of your ideas too. :P