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  • A SLIPPERY SLOPE? Bill

    Filed at 9:48 am under by dcobranchi

    A SLIPPERY SLOPE? Bill Bennett’s K12 organization feels that HSing groups are opposed to public cyber charters.

    Opposition to K12 is being mounted, predictably by the National Education Association, but also by an unlikely source, home school advocates…

    Although the curriculum is home-based, K12’s founder and CEO Ron Packard told CNSNews.com that its mandated rigorous curriculum, enforced accountability through state tests, and access to state-certified teachers makes it “dramatically different” than the home school approach…

    Tom Washburne is an attorney at the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA), as well as director of the National Center for Home Education, the HSLDA’s federal policy and lobbying arm. Washburne said the HSLDA is reluctant to mix home schooling with public education.

    “We’ve made great grounds in the last couple of decades on home school freedom and we don’t want to see us taking a step back,” Washburne told CNSNews.com…

    Packard said he was “shocked” by the opposition being mounted by home school advocates. “It’s really amazing to me that a group that has fought so hard for [its] right to home school would oppose someone else’s parents who are fighting for their right to be doing at home a great public school education,” Packard told CNSNews.com.

    “The same level of intolerance that you saw in the education establishment toward home schooling, I think home schooling [groups] are showing toward us,” he added.

    I believe that this is going to be a major issue over the next several years. Choice is good; more choice is better. I don’t think that HSers are opposed to cyber charters. I think they are concerned that there is confusion that these students are HSers. The slippery slope comes when the public and legislators start to confuse “homeschooling” as it has been traditionally defined with cyber charters. Cyber charter students are still public schoolers with the same curriculum and accountability issues. HSers have opted out of that system. Confusing cyber charter students with homeschoolers just complicates things and may give the state legislatures (with prompting by the NEA) the excuse needed to take away HSing freedoms. And if you don’t think that this is on the agenda, check out this quote from the same article.

    The National Education Association (NEA), which opposes home schooling in general and supports charter schools “with certain provisions,” calls Bennett’s K12 taxpayer “facilitated home schooling.”

    It’s not HSing. Please don’t call it HSing. Call it what it is- Cyber charter schooling.

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