Utterly Meaningless » Blog Archive » IT’S NOT JUST THE DEMOCRATS

IT’S NOT JUST THE DEMOCRATS

Filed at 7:39 pm under by dcobranchi

There’s been a vigorous argument going on over at HEM-Networking over the future of home education now that the Democrats are in control of Congress. Some folks argue that the Dems are looking for payback and are targeting groups they perceive as right-wing. Homeschoolers supposedly are among the targets. Total bullshit, of course.

I mention all this, though, as the backstory for highlighting this ugly quote from the REPUBLICAN House leader in Colorado.

Republicans are also committed to providing parents and students with the tools and choices they need to succeed. Charter schools, home schooling and online education are all choices that parents should have when they consider which environment will help their children meet with greater success.

These options are particularly valuable to at-risk students, who in traditional public school settings often struggle to keep pace. All of these schools help to form our public education system, and deserve our support. We should always be looking for ways to help them advance and improve, while still demanding the accountability that our taxpayers deserve.

We’re not part of the public education system and we owe the taxpayers zero accountability.

26 Responses to “IT’S NOT JUST THE DEMOCRATS”


Comment by
Spunky
January 10th, 2007
at 9:17 pm

In my opinion, the “R” or “D” next to an politicians name matter little in the area of education. Homeschooling is a target because of the loss of funding and the more it grows the bigger the target. What worries me more than the Republicans and Democrats are homeschoolers who are willing to sell-out to the government for a few bucks.


Comment by
JJ Ross
January 11th, 2007
at 2:25 pm

Parent-Directed Education sees it as Spunky does, and so does Education Week:
“K-12 education has morphed as a field. So many of the old ‘movements’ have shattered and regrouped into smaller niches. . . old political alliances have broken down into a range of perspectives. A ‘liberal’ today might be for charter schools or against them, for test-based accountability or not. And ‘conservatives’ might favor a federal role in raising standards or oppose it. In short, the national dialogue has fragmented…”


Comment by
anon
January 11th, 2007
at 3:06 pm

The Dems will probaly leave HE alone – and hopefully they go after the ever growing group of charter schools and private colleges. We all know here, that these are becoming “exclusive” schools – under the guise of:
1) Back to Basics and Patriotism (read here, the basic 3 Rs with a huge smattering of David Barton style Am-Christ-centric history), or
2) Built as alternatives to public schools (read here, you’ll need to sign a SoF to enroll).

Hopefully some Dems will scrutinize the actions religious colleges pumping out a brand of graduates that is biased in science, public/international policy and law and swing money back to colleges and universities in the other direction.


Comment by
Kim
January 11th, 2007
at 8:00 pm

Yah. Well said. I guess I never thought of the repercussions from democrats angle. I think you are right that folks are paranoid about that.


Comment by
lori
January 12th, 2007
at 1:31 am

[Sweeping generalization alert] The problem with Democrats is that they like to regulate *everything*. Homeschooling may not be on the top of their list today, but if Dems stay in the majority long enough, they’ll eventually find it and get to regulating it (or trying to).


Comment by
Nance Confer
January 12th, 2007
at 8:52 am

I’ll worry about it then. So far, all my Dems have been able to do is pass bills that are on their way to being vetoed. And make noise about Iraq. Which is what they should be dealing with. Maybe if enough Reps get ticked off at the prez too, something will actually get done.

Nance


Comment by
Nance Confer
January 12th, 2007
at 8:56 am

Charter schools, home schooling and online education are all choices that parents should have when they consider which environment will help their children meet with greater success.

These options are particularly valuable to at-risk students, who in traditional public school settings often struggle to keep pace. All of these schools help to form our public education system, and deserve our support.
***********
And I have to wonder how the Rep congressman was actually using the word “public” here.

Surely he knows that, legally, hsers are not public school students. Perhaps he was thinking of the “public education system” as all those choices available to members of the public?

Nance


Comment by
Annette
January 12th, 2007
at 4:03 pm

The lines are continuing to be blurred.
Colorado has some govt. enrichment programs for homeschoolers, I’d say that his perspective is understandable and predictable for thinking hsers need to be accountable as some of them are receiving govt. funds.

I understand that “half-time” programs are available for hsers. I think these charter schools offer this: Cheyenne Mountain Charter School in D12 offers “The homeschool Connection”, and Academy School District D20 Classical Academy offers Classical Academy Homeschool Program. Falcon District 49, offers Rocky Mountain Charter Academy.


Comment by
Annette
January 12th, 2007
at 6:49 pm

This situation might be on the House Speaker’s mind:
denver...514209

Hope to re-evaluate school ties
The president of the online-school system and state lawmakers see a problem with public funds paying tuition for hundreds of students attending private institutions.


Comment by
Annette
January 12th, 2007
at 6:53 pm

It would be understandable if he can’t keep his “HOPE”s straight. It seems like it can cause confusion.

aps.k1...ex.htm
Parker HOPE is a One-Day-Per-Week Outreach Program (that meets on Fridays) for the K-12 Home Schooled students living primarily in Douglas, Elbert and Arapahoe counties. We offer classroom instruction by licensed teachers and additional curriculum at no charge. Our non-profit program works because we are an outreach service of the APS Options School and we receive a portion of that public-school funding. We honor the values of parents who choose to educate their children at home. Participation in Parker HOPE enhances your Home School by providing Classroom Instruction, Additional Curriculum for Checkout, Optional Standardized Testing, Record Keeping, Academic Counseling, Testing & Evaluation Conferences, Transcripts and Diplomas.


Comment by
JJ Ross
January 12th, 2007
at 8:59 pm

Or my 16-year-old legally unschooling daughter’s situation might be on his mind, as she is enrolled fulltime in community college and in the honors program and having a GREAT time. SO WHAT???


Comment by
Annette
January 12th, 2007
at 10:13 pm

Nance: Surely he knows that, legally, hsers are not public school students.

Homeschoolers involved in public school programs and you expect him to see them as independent hsers? Public funds = public accountability. I think things might be getting a little too complex for legislators like this one in CO to be able to make a clear distinction about who it is that needs to come underneth their “legislative microscope”.

72.14....574197
Partnership with Littleton’s Walt Whitman Elementary School Offers Home-School Students Educational Resources and Community Connection
**snip**
Principal of Walt Whitman Elementary School, Mollie McDonald, has been a proponent of this program and is enthusiastic about expanding the options for school choice. “Our interest has really been piqued by the opportunity to combine the home-schooling model and the support of a proven curriculum like Connections Academy, with a high sense of community provided by our public school.


Comment by
JJ Ross
January 12th, 2007
at 10:28 pm

“Public funds = public accountability.”

So reductionist, so simplistic. So not our homeschooling reality. Guess the separaists are gonna need a new mantra.


Comment by
Annette
January 12th, 2007
at 10:55 pm

Oh brother, JJ. If I need to know what homeschool reality is, I wouldn’t come to you. I’m not a separatist at all. I have a hs list where parents of cyber charter schoolers are welcome–BUT you know that already! 🙂
The odd thing here is I don’t feel like there is anything that I as a hser can do about this reality of many homeschoolers wanting public school programs. I don’t judge them, I just hope to stay out of the increased accountabity that they are willing to trade-off for.
I can see what is happening here with public school choice, hsing and the Republicans. We’d all better be making friends with the Democrats (all the law-makers actually).
As far as a new mantra, don’t need one. Things are going the way that I thought they would back in 2004. You couldn’t see it then, and you still won’t see the truth in 2007–even though the evidence is there. You’re happy for the new ps offerings for hsers, splendid! Good for those happily doing ps-at-home or hsers partaking of ps offerings. I see the Legislative Microscope coming for those who don’t want the ps offerings. I dread it with every ounce of my being.
I’ll just post two links which contain my thoughts from over a year ago.
aha.ty...x.html
aha.ty...x.html


Comment by
JJ Ross
January 12th, 2007
at 11:13 pm

My homeshcool reality doesn’t need to be embraced or even accepted by you. Hallelujah!


Comment by
Nance Confer
January 13th, 2007
at 1:31 pm

These poor dumb legislators! How will they ever cope with all this confusion!

Give me a break.

Nance


Comment by
Annette
January 13th, 2007
at 8:27 pm

Nance,
A homeschool advocate in Colorado more than a month ago on NCSW explained the situation there and made the statement that “It is very confusing to the legislators too.”
So you don’t have to take my word for it, but you can from someone who actually has to try to keep the legislators straight.


Comment by
Mary
January 14th, 2007
at 12:58 pm

Some legislators have confused the two distinctly different choices in my state in part due to those lobbying for the programs sometimes promoting them as hybrid public-homeschool programs, charter school contracts that name home educators as a market, the media promoting the programs as such and more. As I’ve observed, many in school reform continue to include homeschooling in their pot of school reform alternatives. One of the reasons why I prefer homeschoolers not be included in that pot is because many of the new school reform alternatives still take part in the NCLB model of punishments, rewards and testing. I don’t see any benefit to home educators as a whole to be included in that pot.

Money does talk and some of the biggest campaign contributions for the last several elections in my state can be connected to the biggest Educational Management Organization (White Hat Management)which was started several years ago by David L. Brennan. (If one wants to verify this, visit the Ohio Secretary of State site and utilize their campaign donation tool- www1.s...oh.us/.) That same Educational Management Organization claims those attending their public virtual school are homeschoolers (ohdela...ng.htm) I do NOT want to debate how each individual refers to their choice at all, just stating what has occurred here by an EMO in the name of school reform and how it continues to connect itself to home educators.

On a more positive note, there are legislators who have listened to some of us, paying attention when we attend committee hearings, call or write them letters. They know and understand why some of us do not want to be included in the school reform movement since we seek nothing from them now and historically we have chosen to be left outside of that public school funding arena. Of course there are some who do wish to bring home educators into that arena and Nancy’s helpful campaign suggestion homeed...?p=169 works well in this situation as well. Those who support public funding for home education and those who don’t can let their legislators know where they stand.

When I contact legislators or their aides, I have found them to be appreciative because they tell me they are constantly bombarded with information from a variety of sources and it really helps when they hear from their constituents concerning issues in their districts.


Comment by
Annette
January 14th, 2007
at 1:11 pm

I did some fresh digging on this to verify that there an aspect of this which has a homeschool connection. The result being that CO legislators are looking at hsing as it relates to the HOPE fall-out. Many of us tend to think of hsers as coming under “private” education. IMO, this situation here, jeopardizes that concept.
Here are two links:
oversight needed (includes “learning centers” which hsers can attend for 50% of their education) edweek...6.html

and:
“Online Education Performance Audit, November 2006”
PDF: leg.st...06.pdf

**snip** (pp. 76 & 77)
Public funding for home schooling.
We found one school—Cotopaxi Home-School Partnership (Cotopaxi) within the Cotopaxi RE-3 school district—that operates essentially as a home school but received public online funding over the last five school years. Cotopaxi students were instructed by their parents using a variety of home-school curricula. In Fiscal Years 2004 through 2006 Cotopaxi enrolled about 110 students and received about $630,000 in online public funding. Since this program is essentially a home-school program, it should not have received any public funding.
(P. 38 is interesting about so-called “At Risk” students.)


Comment by
JJ Ross
January 17th, 2007
at 12:04 am

If all there is in one has in the toolbox is a single wrench, maybe it’s understandable that one grips it so tightly, to pinch whatever it can get its pointed little jaws around . . .nothing of consequence can be accomplished applying one tool indiscriminately to everything.


Comment by
Annette
January 17th, 2007
at 7:38 am

Typical JJ, of not addressing the issues.
Here in this section lies factual information that some hsers in CO are part of the public education system, are receiving funds and have an obligation (as seen by some legislators if not all) to be under “strict accountability” in return.


Comment by
JJ Ross
January 17th, 2007
at 10:09 am

See a really big toolbox for homeschool freedom here, using the full complement of democratic principles most of us keep around the house. There are stunningly original collaborative designs in both the Democratic and Republican styles, suitable for many different political neighborhoods and derivative arguments. All provided by real homeschoolers for anyone to build on as they see fit. Bring your own safety glasses and put down that stupid wrench — er, whatever it is you’re still branishing like a banshee. (A muddled metaphor I fear, have some fun with it, be my guest! — )

But maybe it’s no use. If you had the least imagination or felicity with communication, or varied political contexts in your knowledge base, or higher order sense of humor, or even a solid set of reading comprehension skills to bring to bear, you could’ve quickly crafted a worthy response by tweaking my brash metaphorical miss above. Wrenches don’t HAVE pointed little jaws, apparently I was thinking of needle-nosed pliers . . .Daryl, I know you’ve got a full complement of tools, wanna get up to something out in the freedom workshop?


Comment by
Annette
January 17th, 2007
at 5:21 pm

Bring your own safety glasses and put down that stupid wrench — er, whatever it is you’re still branishing like a banshee.

Tools I get. Delusional minds I don’t have the interest or time to probe.

Hint: a good comprehension of the facts in a matter play a role in understanding a situation or in making a plan on how and what to build. Anything else is sheer recklessness.


Comment by
Annette
January 17th, 2007
at 6:53 pm

The irony that you use “deomocratic principles” in relationship to the NHEN Legislative forum to which you linked to is beyond incredible. Did you forget the fact that the forum is closed and has been for years? Did your large role in that? Looking above here nothing has changed.


Comment by
JJ Ross
January 17th, 2007
at 9:03 pm

{chuckling] that’s it, just chuckling. . .


Comment by
Annette
January 17th, 2007
at 9:55 pm

Of course, never anything of substance. You make it about me and what you think of me rather than what the blog entry was about which I did address. That’s always been the point hasn’t? All you do is help me to articulate the issues that I’m concerned about when you spew out your obstructing nonsense. I figure anyone who works so hard at trying to discredit another person must have something that she doesn’t want others to hear. Oh well.
Ihttp://ncsw.homeschooljournal.net/negative-communication-tactics/