Utterly Meaningless » Blog Archive » A HOMESCHOOLING FAILURE?
  • A HOMESCHOOLING FAILURE?

    Filed at 6:18 am under by dcobranchi

    We all like to trumpet the successes. Sometimes, though, a kid is better off in school. This appears to be one of them.

    16 Responses to “A HOMESCHOOLING FAILURE?”


    Comment by
    Chris
    June 24th, 2004
    at 7:43 am

    If she was home alone all day she wasn’t exactly being homeschooled. I rememeber being home all day when my parents were at work and I wasn’t sick…it was called skipping school 🙂

    There is no evidence that they ever attempted to homeschool – so I wouldn’t classify this as a HS failure. It was a parenting failure.


    Comment by
    Eric Holcombe
    June 24th, 2004
    at 11:40 am

    I’m sort of skeptical of the girl’s quote – that it/they could be out of context. Come on guys, a g-school fifth grader doesn’t do anything for two solid years and makes it up (plus first semester of 8th grade) in one semester? Either 1)She is incredibly bright (strange she doesn’t have a full academic scholarship), 2)The school is way too easy – still strange she doesn’t have an academic scholarship 3)The parents did teach her to some extent and the reporter takes pot shots at homeschooling (4 The family is using their homeschool “debacle” as her “hardship” solely to qualify for the Discover card scholarship. The reporter is an innocent bystander.

    I think #4 is most likely.
    I won’t disagree that she may not have been properly homeschooled, but something’s fishy here. Northeast Technical State is a small community college about 5 miles from where I grew up – probably 200 miles from her home. I think it’s respectable, but not where a prodigy performing arts major would go. Neither is MTSU. But her major isn’t music you say- so why all the “flourishing in performing arts” talk? Oh yeah, talents are part of the Discover card scholly requirements too.

    I mean hey, it’s not like we have a state education lottery here or anything. How are they supposed to pay for school…


    Comment by
    atlas
    June 24th, 2004
    at 5:25 pm

    Yes, here is the big elephant in the living room. Home schooling in some places is called no schooling. I’m sorry to come on like big brother but society has a responsibility to these kids. Someone has to check in here and see that something is going on. The vast majority of time things are just fine. That’s easy. The hard one is how to see to the welfare of those that are not receiving anything. Any suggestions. This from a career public school teacher.
    atlas


    Comment by
    Daryl Cobranchi
    June 24th, 2004
    at 5:55 pm

    I’m sorry, but I don’t buy the premise. Society doesn’t owe her anything. If anyone is in “debt,” it is the parents who owe her an education and (possibly) an apology.


    Comment by
    Tim Haas
    June 24th, 2004
    at 6:28 pm

    Sorry, Atlas, I’d have to say the elephant in the room is how many kids are damaged emotionally, intellectually, and physically by public schooling; how public schooling cements class differences and economic inequality more often than it ameliorates them; how the push for universal preschool is going to worsen the carnage; and how, in fact, public schooling at its core represents an abdication of parental responsibility rather than its fulfillment.


    Comment by
    Laura
    June 24th, 2004
    at 7:04 pm

    “Sometimes, though, a kid is better off in school.”

    Daryl, I never thought in a thousand million years I’d hear you say that. (See you type that?)

    I think mine is another one better off in school. She’s horribly, painfully, dreadfully shy. Besides that, she’s an only. If it weren’t for school making her interact with people, she’d be a box turtle. As it is, she arranged by herself to volunteer at a cat shelter this summer. My husband and I are thrilled.


    Comment by
    atlas
    June 24th, 2004
    at 7:49 pm

    Daryl, society doesn’t owe her anything??? This is a kid. You are wrong. Society does owe the kid her equal opportunity to be educated. An apology from her parents is worthless. Action at the proper time is needed.

    Tim. That’s another arguement, about public schools. We can do that. The case here is this kid, here, now. Do we just abandon her because you don’t like public schools?
    atlas


    Comment by
    Daryl Cobranchi
    June 24th, 2004
    at 8:17 pm

    OK, I’ll play along. On what basis do you argue that society owes her? I’ve got 10,000+ years of history on my side arguing it is a parent’s responsibility to ensure that their child gets an education. You’ve got, what, 152 years of failed government schools?


    Comment by
    Tim Haas
    June 24th, 2004
    at 8:35 pm

    Atlas: Unless she was in physical danger, the answer is yes. Her two years of apparently bad homeschooling clearly haven’t hurt her, have they? In fact, I think this story is a shining example of John Holt’s maxim that “homeschooling is self-selecting and self-correcting.”


    Comment by
    Chris
    June 24th, 2004
    at 8:45 pm

    Tim and Daryl are right. There is no right to an education. It’s nowhere in the Constitution. It’s the attitude that it is some sort of right that allows parents to abdicate their responsiblites in the first place. This nation was built by immagrants, many of whom not being educated themselves, bent over backward to make sure their kids were. When the govt makes it a right, nobody takes responsibility, and society as a whole is worse off.

    Exhibit A – the current education system in this country.


    Comment by
    atlas
    June 24th, 2004
    at 9:13 pm

    Woah, Darwin would love you guys. You are right, it is not in the constitution, so screw the kid. If the parents don’t do it, tough kid.
    atlas


    Comment by
    Daryl Cobranchi
    June 24th, 2004
    at 9:22 pm

    Well, I’ll take Darwin over Dewey and Marx any day of the week.


    Comment by
    Eric Holcombe
    June 24th, 2004
    at 9:57 pm

    Well gee Atlas, where does this lead? Shouldn’t we make sure parents are responsible enough to “parent” children before they even have them? That would save society a lot of trouble checking up on all those abused kids. Shouldn’t they be financially secure enough in advance? Shouldn’t they surrender all 2nd and 4th amendment rights too – you know so socialists..er I mean society can check up on them whenever they want without being afraid?


    Comment by
    Tim Haas
    June 24th, 2004
    at 9:57 pm

    Atlas, we’re not getting anywhere trading jibes. I have a sincere suggestion — read “A Life of One’s Own”, by David Kelley. Though its topic is the usurpation of individual initiative by the welfare state and not education per se, the underlying principles and the historical arc are essentially the same. This will give you a better idea of where we’re coming from when we say things like “there’s no right to an education”.

    I’ll even play fair and read a book of your suggestion if you care to make one.


    Comment by
    Rikki
    June 25th, 2004
    at 12:30 am

    I dunno if Atlas will take that recommendation or just shrug it off. wakka wakka 😉
    I will however, I’ve never heard of it and it sounds interesting. Much gratitude from the bookworm club. 🙂


    Comment by
    DeeJay
    June 25th, 2004
    at 5:54 pm

    If her parents were so bad at leaving her alone and not educating her, why is dad going with her to collect the award?

    The award is also based on facing a personal roadblock or challenge. She’s blaming that she didn’t learn when homeschooled. If she didn’t learn how come by the second half of the year she was doing first-semester Algebra. I could agree that she was a little behind, but not like she’s saying. It sounds like a story for money.

    Atlas, when I pulled my fifth grader out of school, he had a second grade math and reading level? Who checks the public schools to make sure that all the children are learning and are at grade level? Where is the public school’s responsibility? Is that one reason NBLB has been enacted?