Utterly Meaningless » 2005 » April

    Filed on April 20, 2005 at 4:42 pm under by dcobranchi

    It’s pretty good:

    “We’re not opposed to high standards. We’re just opposed to double standards,” [state Rep. Charlie] Howard said.

    HB 530 will bring the eligibility for Texas financial aid programs into compliance with federal law, Howard said. According to Howard, in 1998 Congress eliminated the law requiring home-schooled students to take an eligibility test in order to qualify for federal financial aid.

    Not that I’m buying into a standards-based view of home education, etc. etc.


    Filed on at 12:56 pm under by dcobranchi

    What should be not-so-strange bedfellows (chaste, of course) in the pushback against the g-school juggernaut are turning on one another in Ohio:

    Catholic high schools want the state to prevent home-schooled children from using money that allows private- school students to take college classes for free.

    Home schoolers’ use of the $2 million Post-Secondary Education Options program has led to a bitter dispute between the Catholic Conference of Ohio and parents of home-schooled children.

    Parochial-school students and home-schooled students have been using the state-funded program to enroll in accelerated course work – classes that the schools or parents are not able to provide.

    But the Catholic Conference, which represents Catholic high schools, wants the state legislature to cut home schoolers out of the program.

    Standard disclaimer that I think such programs ought not to exist for anyone, but given that this one doesn’t seem likely to drive increased regulation for all, I am hard-pressed to condemn home-educating families for going for it.

    (No, I don’t really think Benedict has anything to do with it. It’s just fun to do German jokes for a change.)


    Filed on at 10:53 am under by dcobranchi

    This self-described conservative Christian doesn’t get home education is the slightest. His argument against it is not even self-consistent.

    Let’s give parents, most of whom are NOT great teachers, the option to send their kids to real, professional, great teachers. Let’s hold teachers accountable to high teaching standards, and only hire and maintain those who do. Let’s insist on not allowing public schools to trample on the constitutional rights of our children, and let’s hold our elected school board officials accountable for maintaining the standards that we, as citizens of each school district, demand.

    If you perceive problems with your public schools, you can choose, as a family, to be part of the solution, or you can run from the problems and home school. While that may be the right decision for a few, in my opinion it is more often a decision that deprives students of some very fine teachers, and doesn’t teach them a thing about how to get along in the real world.

    So, we’re expected to sacrifice our kids’ futures in the decades-long fight for better g-schools? Why? All that does is perpetuate the monopoly. Isn’t that exactly what the educrats would want us to do?

    Instead, why not home educate and show the world that compulsory attendance is counter-productive to true education? Which is more likely to bring about his nirvana of great g-schools?


    Filed on April 19, 2005 at 1:16 pm under by dcobranchi

    An apparently influential junior tennis tournament founder is missing the court for the grass:

    “Hundreds of junior tennis stars are traveling around the world and turning to home schooling to be able to compete in the international junior tennis world,” Easter Bowl founder and director Seena Hamilton said.

    Hamilton held a forum Monday night at the Riviera to discuss a variety of topics with players’ parents. At the forum, she voiced concern over how home schooling sometimes affects teenagers negatively from a social standpoint.

    And more from a different paper:

    Hamilton further decries parents of tennis tyros choosing that they be home-schooled, which gives them more time to practice forehands and backhands. “I’m opposed to home schooling that is not for real,” Hamilton said in an interview.

    One girl who is being home-schooled advised her, according to Hamilton, that she was being schooled on the Internet and that she had to submit papers every three months. Hamilton said another girl who was home-schooled scored well on SATs, entered a quality university and soon flunked out. “She wasn’t used to being with people,” Hamilton said.

    Clearly home education is at fault here. The isolating, hypercompetitive nature of a championship tennis circuit has nothing at all to do with teens’ social maladjustment.


    Filed on April 18, 2005 at 4:18 pm under by dcobranchi

    Well, that’s the coinage I’d claim if there were a kitchen-table shot to accompany this home-ed overview from the British newspaper the Observer (sister Sunday paper of the leftist Guardian):

    It’s a Wednesday morning and Caroline Spear’s four daughters are busy. Thirteen-year-old Freya has been looking up the lifecycle of the squid, but now she’s dancing to punk band Bowling for Soup in the living room. Zsofia, 11, has caught the bus into nearby Bognor Regis with her friend Jane. Eight-year-old Erica works on the computer (Smokey the pet rat draped around her shoulders) and Iona, six, is in the bath. As the day goes by the girls will talk about – among other things – whether or not gay people should be allowed in the Navy, where to buy the best chocolate raisins, how to make a polyhedron and the likelihood of Zsofia being stopped for suspected truanting by the police on her shopping trip.

    The piece offers the highest estimate I’ve seen of HEKs in England and Wales — 170,000 — and some amusing generalizations about home education in the U.S.:

    In America, there is a long tradition of home educating. They are mostly either evangelical Christians or secular families unhappy, for different reasons, about the way religion is taught. In Britain, the motivation is rarely to do with faith. Bullying has traditionally been a catalyst. But increasingly it’s a reaction to more regulation in schools, from Sats tests to literacy strategies.

    Hey, I’ll put our overtested bullies against your overtested bullies anytime!

    This is quite a news flash:

    Although Britain is not at the same stage as America, where institutions like Harvard reserve places for home-educated children […]

    To make sure we honor your reservation, apply in the next ten minutes and mention the code SMRTRTHNU.

    Of course, what self-respecting roundup wouldn’t give the pros a chance to weigh in:

    Deborah Simpson, from the Professional Association of Teachers, says: ‘Some children are taught at home very effectively. Others are allegedly being taught, but not much happens beyond the basics. If a parent has an ideological argument against teaching their child to read, for instance, we would argue that they’re denying them a basic human right.’

    Della never quite understood why the Anti-Literacy League had such trouble getting its message out to a wider audience.

    Ultimately, I salute the folks who agreed to be interviewed for this piece, because they obviously managed to put a small crack in the writer’s worldview windscreen:

    But is being educated at home any better, any more effective? The home-educated children I meet seem happy. They are articulate, self-assured, independent. But can they calculate fractions? Explain the significance of the Industrial Revolution? Analyse the difference between a simile and a metaphor? Or is my obsession with these scraps of information — facts that I learned in a classroom but have mostly never thought about again — a symptom of my own traditional and mostly uninspiring comprehensive education during the Seventies and Eighties?

    (OK, so 5p is actually worth nearly a dime — but I have to take conversion costs and wire transfer fees into account.)


    Filed on at 2:43 pm under by dcobranchi

    Kimberly Swygert points to a post at The Anchoress that is utterly depressing:

    Last night when the lad came home, he hoisted himself onto the kitchen counter and said, “Let’s talk”…

    “What’s chlamydia?” he asked. With my coffee scoop suspended in mid-air, I turned and looked at him. “This is an academic question, right?”

    “Geez yes,” he said. “There’s an outbreak of it in the freshman class. A few of the girls were talking about it.” I explained that chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection that both males and females can get. It’s transmitted by sexual intercourse and oral sex. It’s not something that one catches from a sneeze or a cough.

    Other things that the 14-year-old girl’s at this boy’s school were talking about were rape lists:

    “Let’s put it this way,” he said, “there are a bunch of freshman girls who have lists. They call them Rape Lists. They have a list of guys on them that they want to give beejays to. It’s like a competition. The more they can cross off the list, the hotter they are.”

    And while that was sinking into my brain, he said, “I’m on a couple of those lists.”

    “Oh, buddy,” I said. “That’s not good, is it?”

    “Not really.”

    “What happens when they don’t cross you off their list?”

    “I go on their Death List,” he said.

    “What does that mean?!”

    “I’m dead to them. I’m a nerd. It’s a pressure thing. A lot of guys don’t want everyone to think they’re a sexual nerd.”

    STDs. Oral sex contests. These are 14-year-olds. If it’s true that every generation thinks the next one is going to Hell in a handbasket, I really hate to think what it will be like 20 years from now. I honestly can’t imagine how we could go downhill from here.


    Filed on at 2:28 pm under by dcobranchi

    This is a really snarky response to the ones from the other day.

    Mismanaged thought and comparative religion

    What passes for thought in the miasma of some ganglia never ceases to delight me. Your Opinion page April 12 must go down as one of the motherlodes of mismanaged thought, misrepresented faith and drivel I’ve ever heard. I’m simply in awe.

    Otis Butler (“There was something to God’s master design”) doesn’t have an opinion because he doesn’t need one – his God supports any opinion that might rattle lonely and forlorn around in his head – and the utter gall he has to speak for his God certainly puts him in perspective.

    Firing the Observer editorial staff and hiring Buck Walker would suit his overblown sense of omniscience just fine.

    As to Ron Page (“There are no facts supporting evolution”), such random synaptic firing boggles. Excuse me, Ron, but faith is not fact. (I can see Sgt. Joe Friday now – “Just the faiths, ma’am.”) Lexiconists and churchmen alike have spent untold time and energy on distinct differences between the two. Perhaps Page might actually read some and not knee-jerk his reactions as the word of God.

    Mark Chandler (“Why is it wrong to teach creation?”) there’s absolutely nothing against teaching creationism in schools and universities; it’s being done now and has been for centuries – it’s called Comparative Religion and World Myth. Fascinating stuff.

    Stephen Miles, Fayetteville

    Ouch! Even I’m not that nasty.

    SO, SUE ME

    Filed on at 2:20 pm under by dcobranchi

    I really like WiFi. Especially when it’s provided unencrypted in a hotel lobby right next to the train station. The Clarion in downtown Fayetteville has a very nice (and comfortable) mezzanine. With a little luck, they won’t kick me out of here for a few hours.


    Filed on at 4:23 am under by dcobranchi

    The loooooooooong countdown to the move is finally over. I close on the NC house today while Lydia is supervising the packers in DE. Then tonight ( 3 a.m.!) I catch the train to DE to help with the move from that end. We’ll finally pull out of DE on Friday (I think). Hence, I will have ZERO ‘net access until Monday a.m.

    A whole week without blogging. I’ll definitely be in withdrawal.


    Filed on at 4:13 am under by dcobranchi

    I’m not really a fan of Kate Tsubata, as her writing always seems somewhat strident (Mr. Pot, meet Mr. Kettle). And her column in today’s WashTimes doesn’t change my mind a bit. That being said, she does pass along some good information for any older HEK in the DC-area who might be interested in a career in filmmaking.

    We recently learned about an alternative to film school that teaches students the nuts and bolts of creating feature films in a two-day “boot camp” approach. Taught by veteran filmmaker Dov S-S Simens, this intensive weekend seminar has jump-started the filmmaking careers of such luminaries as Will Smith, Quentin Tarantino, Guy Ritchie and Queen Latifah… The two-day seminar will be held at the AFI Silver Theatre, 8633 Colesville Road in Silver Spring, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

    More info is available here.


    Filed on at 3:53 am under by dcobranchi

    I’m coming up on my third blogiversary (May 9th) and was waxing nostalgic. Actually, I was bored and started to read through the archive from May, 2002. A couple of observations– The format really hasn’t changed in all that time. My posts still tend to be short little snippets with some (sometimes) snarky comment thrown in. The other observation? I’m consistent.


    Filed on April 17, 2005 at 2:49 pm under by dcobranchi

    to me, anyway.

    The Other Mother is an unschooler in Arkansas. I like her style, though Izzy might find her a bit spicy. I’ve added her to the blogroll.

    BTW, This Other Mother is almost certainly not this Other Mother.


    Filed on at 11:43 am under by dcobranchi

    I understand that I’ve pissed off more than a few readers with my ID posts. Well, here’s your chance for revenge. Nuke me.


    Filed on at 11:20 am under by dcobranchi

    No, I’m not writing about the bill waiting for Pres. Bush’s signature. Instead, I wanted to highlight a short NYT piece on whether or not it’s worth it to essentially bankrupt the family in order to send “junior” off to a name-brand college. Hubert Herring seems to conclude that it’s not.


    Filed on at 10:53 am under by dcobranchi

    The Charlotte Observer seems to be channeling Tom DeLay in this sorry excuse of a sidebar. I guess they’re attempting to carry water for the troubled Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. Pitiful.


    Filed on at 8:13 am under by dcobranchi

    As part of a larger study, the Mackinac Center has released this well-footnoted history. It’s a good summary and worth filing away.


    Filed on at 7:22 am under by dcobranchi

    WND has a short piece on the growing movement of Christian schools teaching a trivial Trivium curriculum. I really know almost nothing about classical education. I thought the Trivium was Latin, logic, and rhetoric, but one of the schools profiled in the article seems to have expanded it a bit:

    The content is a liberal arts curriculum that emphasizes passing on the heritage of Western Civilization. “Scripture, theology, history, literature, science, mathematics, English, and the Latin language receive privileged attention,” the Providence Hall website says.

    The Octavium?

    Any classical home educators out there?


    Filed on April 16, 2005 at 8:15 pm under by dcobranchi

    Here’s an interesting little blurb found under the “Health” category:

    Homeschool Families, offering a free screening for all home-schooled children in Ozaukee County ages 4 to 14 from 9 a.m. to noon April 21.

    Is something going on in Wisconsin?


    Filed on at 12:34 pm under by dcobranchi

    The lede in this rant is just plain scary.

    The war for the children has been reaching ridiculous extremes as of late, with the ownership of children being an object of dispute.

    Sometimes I’m not convinced that GoogleNews is a good thing.


    Filed on at 8:56 am under by dcobranchi

    An interesting piece on the Today Show, er, today on extreme commuters– folks who travel hours each day getting to and from work. The folks they interviewed claim to love the towns where they live. I’m wondering when they get to see them. Not to mention their kids.

    My new commute is going to be pretty brutal. I’ll have to travel all the way to the next county. I don’t know if I’ll be able to handle the five minutes. On my bicycle.


    Filed on April 15, 2005 at 7:24 pm under by dcobranchi

    The NC legislature is considering a bill that would mandate that all schools start the day with the Pledge of Allegiance, as a result of a teen’s lobbying. I heard a brief interview with the kid. According to him, it’s God’s will that all NC kids swear fealty to a piece of cloth.


    Filed on at 11:02 am under by dcobranchi

    Spunky is sponsoring an online home education convention/blog-a-thon. She’s inviting submissions from other bloggers. Deadline for submission is Wednesday, April 20, 2005 at 12:00 Noon. (EDT).

    And I’ve added the Spunky one to the blogroll. I’m not sure why she wasn’t already there. My bad.


    Filed on at 8:09 am under by dcobranchi

    Now some North Carolinians want to secede. But this time they want to leave their local school district. Home educating dad Paul Chesser has some excellent advice for them:

    You don’t need legislative authority to secede from your local schools. You don’t need to establish another separate bureaucracy to oversee the education of your children. You don’t need to entrust your kids to the lottery of learning that comes with any publicly funded system.

    No, you already have another, better option. Some 28,746 families in North Carolina have proven that it is possible for students to excel in the smallest imaginable school system — in homes. You already have the right to break what binds you to the whims of school boards and education bureaucrats, by teaching your own children. And if you believe that the schools are failing to properly educate your kids, then it is your duty to pull them out of the system and do it yourself, if you can’t find or afford another acceptable alternative.

    The whole Op/Ed is well worth a read. Use the standard passwords. (Tip credit: Hal Young)


    Filed on at 6:00 am under by dcobranchi

    That’s a note to myself that I really should read Rebecca Hagelin’s Home Invasion. The author has been all over talk radio lately, and her ideas sound commonsensical– and familiar to home educators. I’m curious to see if she spends any time at all on home education.


    Filed on at 5:48 am under by dcobranchi

    I can easily see HEKs (from co-ops or individually) getting involved in the PongSat program.

    A PongSat is an experiment that fits inside of a ping pong ball. Students as young as eight are running their own space programs. Experiments range from plant seeds to computers with sophisticated sensors. For several months, students from Belgium, California, and Texas have been mailing their PongSats to JP Aerospace. In a couple of weeks these ping pong ball “satellites” will be flown to the edge of space on a research balloon platform. During the flight, the PongSats will experience cold down to -90 degrees Fahrenheit, vacuum, cosmic rays, and zero gravity during the descent.

    After landing, the PongSats are returned to the students along with a video of the mission. The student will then inspect their experiment and study the results.

    There’s no charge to participate. Details are available here.


    Filed on April 14, 2005 at 2:46 pm under by dcobranchi

    to be a good April Fool’s joke. But good nonetheless. (Via Tim)


    Filed on at 4:08 am under by dcobranchi

    This pro-home education Op/Ed reads as if it were written by a kid. Unfortunately, Joel Fox is only described as a staff writer.

    UPDATE: He’s a college student. I hope not in Journalism.


    Filed on at 3:47 am under by dcobranchi

    That’s “Put Parents in Charge Dead in Committee?”

    SC Gov. Mark Sanford’s signature education proposal appears to have run out of lives.

    News19’s Robert Kittle personally polled all 25 members of the House Ways and Means committee Wednesday, and 20 of the 25 say they would vote against the governor’s act as it stands now.

    Some of those say they would vote for an amended version, but even with a major change, it might not have enough vote

    I’m really not too sad to see this one go, as the strings that would have been attached for home educators to keep their own money seemed onerous. Legislators are proposing amendments that would turn PPiC into a true voucher program. That one would exclude HEKs and, like PPiC ver. 1, stands zero chance of passing.


    Filed on at 3:35 am under by dcobranchi

    and home educator. That’s Karch Kiraly, according to this AP article.


    Filed on April 13, 2005 at 5:04 pm under by dcobranchi

    These are from the Fayetteville Observer. Boy, am I gonna fit in well here.

    There was something to God’s master design

    Your March 23 editorial, “Constitutional Common Sense,” was a knee-jerk reaction about an exchange teacher from Australia who came over here with one thing on her mind: to get in our schools and corrupt our children by teaching falsehoods and lies, that we as humans come from something other than the slime of the Earth, that maybe there was something to this thing called God’s master design.

    But never fear. One of our watchful atheists caught her and has brought suit and the ever-faithful Observer has jumped right on the bandwagon and has taken the side of the atheist.

    But wonder of wonders, on April 1, the Observer ran an opinion by Buck Walker that made more sense than anything I have seen in this paper in a long time. The Observer could fire its whole editorial staff and hire Walker, his wife and first-born and could double the amount of papers sold. I’m sure a lot of us out here in the real world think the same way. Listen to us sometime.

    Otis Butler, Lillington

    There are no facts supporting evolution

    With all due respect, what is really and truly inconceivable is that in our government-run public school classrooms, proselytizing is being carried out and subsidized by the government in direct opposition to the Constitution. There are absolutely no facts supporting the foolish and silly idea of evolution. To this any true scientist must agree.

    The government’s case rests wholly upon assumptions, both unfounded and unreasonable, to foist their propaganda upon impressionable young minds. The obvious intent is to destroy faith in the Creator who made heaven and Earth and all that is therein.

    Those who oppose are dismissed out of hand and may be subjected to oppression without recourse, as in the case of a teacher being reprimanded or fired, or a student being intimidated or punished.

    Ron Page, Lumberton

    Why is it wrong to teach creation?

    God help us all. Why is it wrong to teach creation (God made us), but OK to teach evolution? Why not both? When you are sick with cancer, HIV, facing death, etc., and it’s your child, wife, father, etc., who do you think you will pray to? Darwin or God Almighty, or maybe the ACLU. For your sake, I pray it will be to God in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

    Let your children have the chance to experience God’s work by reading the Bible with them. Then see who or what they believe – Darwin’s theory or God’s creation.

    Mark Chandler, Fayetteville

    It’s enough to make me consider atheism.


    Filed on at 8:21 am under by dcobranchi

    I’m sure the home educrat will highlight this horrifying tale as a counterpoint to his drive for increased regulation for home education.

    At a Columbus high school, A 16-year-old disabled girl was dragged to the auditorium stage, “punched and forced to perform oral sex on at least two boys,” as dozens of students watched and one videotaped her humiliation.

    Joanne notes that the school at first sought to cover up the incident. The principal will be fired.

    There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that our kids (especially our daughters) are many times safer at home than they are in the local g-school.


    Filed on at 7:12 am under by dcobranchi

    I was away for a few days helping my father recover from this:

    flood sign.JPG

    That was the morning of April 4th, the second time in seven months the Delaware has flooded. (Yep, that’s a nearly submerged speed limit sign in the middle of the shot.) His house is about 100 feet back from the river, and last time it crested just before reaching the house — this time, not so lucky. He ended up with three feet of water in the basement, but as he had plenty of warning his material losses were relatively small, unlike some folks down the road and across the way on the Jersey side who live right on the bank. Still can’t drink the well water, but we got everything scrubbed and disinfected and put back in some semblance of order.

    I wish there were a picture of me scraping oil-soaked mud from the bottom of the swimming pool with a rubber dustpan.


    Filed on at 4:12 am under by dcobranchi

    This is laugh out loud funny. A retired pro wrestler’s lawyer is threatening Something Awful’s Rich Kyanka. Threatening in that good old fashioned Goodfellas way. So far the score is Kyanka 100, Joe Pesci -8,000.

    BONUS: The title is a line from a movie that is apropos. Name that flick.


    Filed on at 3:12 am under by dcobranchi

    physicians wouldn’t write lame Op/Eds using the phrase “in an ideal world.”

    I accidentally found this sad little statist piece on the fight against obesity. Pretty standard fare for the type, but this section stood out a bit:

    Why are schools a place to fight the obesity war for our children’s health? They are our children’s second home. Schools are already regulated to reflect social priorities and values, to “parent”; the regulation of how they feed our children is not a substantial social stretch into brand new territory for schools. Schools are uniquely the other “parent” of our children and must therefore provide them with the best possible care, including nutritional care.

    A graf to warm the cockles of every educrat’s heart. Yeccch!


    Filed on April 12, 2005 at 7:32 pm under by dcobranchi

    This Susan Ohanian post has to be an urban legend. The alternative is just too awful to contemplate. (Tip credit: Jeanne)

    UPDATE: It’s real. Crap!


    Filed on at 7:10 pm under by dcobranchi

    Mike Peach found a new blog by a home educating mom that he highly recommends. He’s right. Alas, no RSS feed, but I’m adding Carlotta to the blogroll.


    Filed on at 5:56 am under by dcobranchi

    A normal home educating family whose daughter is seeing some success in the music biz.

    Since she was 6, Jordan Leigh Young of Harrodsburg has sung country/gospel music at jamborees, festivals and other events all over Kentucky, including performances for the state legislature and Gov. Ernie Fletcher.

    And she’s 12 years old.

    While she’s still in school, Jordan and her 7-year-old sister Braden are homeschooled.

    “That has been the best decision that I think we’ve ever made since we had kids,” said Jeff Young, Jordan’s father. “I think the homeschooling has grown our kids far beyond where they would be in a public or private school.”

    …”Now I’m singing all over Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee, Ohio,” Jordan said.

    “I’ve done three CDs … one when I was 9, and one when I was 10. And I’m going to start working on my fourth one pretty soon.”

    The parents sound as if they’re handling their daughter’s success wisely. The whole article is worth a read.


    Filed on at 5:41 am under by dcobranchi

    I find this almost too hard to believe, but Michael Jackson sounds like he’d fit in quite well at any home education conference.


    Filed on at 5:33 am under by dcobranchi

    I see this as the beginning of the end for one of Iowa’s three options:

    Parents in Iowa who remove children ages 6 to 16 from school for home-schooling have three options: pure home-schooling, home-school assistance or dual enrollment, said Kathi Slaughter, spokeswoman for the state Department of Education.

    Under the home assistance program, Neely was to be advised by a certified teacher, who would meet with Sarah twice a month.

    …State Rep. Mary Mascher, an Iowa City Democrat, questions if two meetings a month is sufficient.

    “We ought to be able to check in with the kids,” Mascher said.

    “The parents who are doing a good job have nothing to fear and it won’t be an issue. But the parents who aren’t doing that, we need to hold them accountable and protect the kids,” she added.

    She’s right. Twice a month for an hour isn’t nearly enough oversight. I think every day would work much better. For six hours or so. And to keep things manageable, the HEKs should all come to the teacher instead of the other way around.

    There may be a silver lining in this, as any change in an already burdensome option could serve to push home educators to the “pure home-schooling” route.


    Filed on April 11, 2005 at 3:08 pm under by dcobranchi

    Teens need a lot of sleep. So, being forced to catch the school bus at 6:25 a.m. surely violates the 8th Amendment. A couple of pretty sad quotes:

    “We were joking that if Starbucks opened in the school and gave us 15 percent of the profits, we would all have laptops,” said Clare Tuley, a 15-year-old student at Robinson High School, which has 4,500 students.

    …Diana Adams of Great Falls spent most of her time one night last week waking up her son, a sophomore at Langley High School. He kept falling asleep while doing his homework.

    “I home-schooled my kids through junior high to avoid this problem as long as possible,” said Adams who tries to drive her children to school at least twice a week so they can catch a few precious extra minutes of sleep.

    Is there a new law in Fairfax Co. (VA) that you can’t home educate through high school?

    My 13-year-old son routinely sleeps until 9 a.m. He gets up when he gets up. And then he does his “schoolwork.” I can’t imagine how unproductive he’d be if he were forced to awaken at 6 every morning. This is one of the beauties of home education; we can accomodate the kids’ individual needs. Even something as unique as sleep patterns.

    Sometimes I really feel sorry for the g-school kids and their families. (Tip credit: Skip Oliva)


    Filed on at 1:47 pm under by dcobranchi

    The world’s foremost expert on genetic fingerprinting thinks everyone in the world should be tested and entered into a database. Not to worry, though; the State’s access would be restricted. Riiiiight! (HT: Judy Aron)


    Filed on at 7:02 am under by dcobranchi

    Scientists (real ones) are boycotting a show “trial” in Kansas pitting Evolution against ID.


    Filed on at 6:45 am under by dcobranchi

    OK– this is from a press release, and they’re marketing cyber home education. But I’d be really interested in learning the source for this:

    “Of all parents who begin to homeschool their children, approximately 50 percent drop it within a few months because of how difficult they found it to be,” Augstroze said. “An online academy makes it easier than ever for parents to provide a high-quality Christian education at home,” he said.

    UPDATE: Ah– now I get it. Learning by Grace appears to be affiliated with The Grace Academy. These are the same folks who ran PA’s Einstein Academy cyber charter into the ground (and multiple lawsuits).


    Filed on at 3:59 am under by dcobranchi

    Reason Online has a couple follow-ups (here and here) to the corporate funding of home education piece from the other day. I’m still not impressed:

    Burges would like to move her operation out of her dining room and create a professional learning center, but a benefactor who could help her jump-start such a project has yet to sign on. Burges believes it’s only a matter of time. “We’ve just now been around long enough for people to feel that we’re credible,” she explains. “I’m hanging around. I’m reaching out to the community, staying in their face. I have a bull’s mentality where that’s concerned. I’m just not going to give up, because what we’re doing works.”

    Is RO supposed to be a libertarian mag?


    Filed on April 10, 2005 at 5:34 pm under by dcobranchi

    This tale is kind of the flip side of the Schiavo debacle. A home educating mom suffered cardiac arrest as a result of a miscarriage and has been in a coma since November. Her husband is bringing her home to be with him and their four kids.


    Filed on at 5:20 pm under by dcobranchi

    Is this IN legislator a closeted member of the Alliance?

    The amendment that gutted the provisions was offered by Rep. Phil Hinkle of Indianapolis, a fellow Republican. He said Republicans already are seeking major changes in the way state money is doled out to public schools, and want to make more students take advanced classes. Asking them deal with such another major change would be too much, he said.

    “We should not try to destroy public education overnight,” Hinkle said.


    Filed on at 4:55 pm under by dcobranchi

    Oh– modern conveniences. This week’s hotel has WiFi in the room. Stay tuned.


    Filed on at 8:07 am under by dcobranchi

    Again. Back tomorrow a.m. We’re in the home stretch now. Closing #1 (the new house) is scheduled for 4/18. The moving van pulls out of DE on 4/20. The next ten days are going to be just a bit hectic.


    Filed on at 6:52 am under by dcobranchi

    The NYT has a really good Op/Ed from Paul Davies on the search for life on the planet Earth. It’s written from an evolutionary POV, of course, but there’s real science here. Davies explains how scientists are searching for life on Earth that might have evolved along a completely separate path from our own. Worth a read if you like this kind of thing.


    Filed on April 9, 2005 at 11:33 am under by dcobranchi

    Some folks really are just too dumb to teach.

    A 34-year-old high school math teacher was arrested after two female students said he served them vodka drinks and smoked marijuana with them at his house, officials said.

    Michael B. Ziemian also showed the girls how he was growing marijuana in his garage, a Sarasota County sheriff’s report said.

    At least sex wasn’t involved.

    « Last | Next »