Utterly Meaningless » Blog Archive » ANOTHER WEEK, ANOTHER SERIES

    Filed at 10:25 am under by dcobranchi

    But this one seems a lot more even-handed:

    Beginning today and over the next two days, the Daily Local News will examine the subject of keeping one’s children out of a traditional schoolroom setting. In dozens of interviews with home schooling students and parents, our reporters have questioned what makes a successful home schooled student, and why individual families began moving down this new road in education.

    This series will also look at a typical day in the life of a home schooling family, and the many resources that have sprung up to help these families in their mission. It will also look at the challenges to state law that some families are beginning to face, and how some home schoolers worry that those challenges would weaken the system they have come to admire.

    Each day, we will also profile the parents and children who daily find themselves at home, in school.

    On the critic side, Usual Suspect Rob Reich (with whom I’ve having lunch tomorrow, by the way) is joined by a few new names:

    Clive Belfield, associate director of the National Center for the Study of Privatization in Education at the Teachers’ College, Columbia University, which does nonpartisan research on topics including home schooling, is one of those who urge caution in looking at home schooling studies, believingthere needs to be better record-keeping on students’ performance.

    “We tried to get the home schooling data for every state and we could only get credible data for 23,” said Belfield, who added that home schooling could prove to be a good idea, but that it is impossible to know without more scientific evidence.

    Hmmm, “nonpartisan” and “Teachers’ College, Columbia University” — so close, and yet so far.

    Then there’s:

    Frank Farley is a professor in the Department of Psychological Studies in Education at Temple University. Although not wholly opposed to home schooling, he nevertheless believes that it should be used in appropriate situations — such as in cases where the public school system is poor or a student suffers from school phobia, making attendance a traumatic experience.

    But Farley said he thinks parents sometimes keep students at home because they are too sheltering, short-changing students from a broad educational experience that includes social lessons.

    “You’ve got to have social skills,” Farley said. “You learn them by interacting with other kids, with being in a school setting, by learning them from knowledgeable teachers. “Much of success in life is due to how you relate to people,” he said.

    You know, I think finally understand why academic politics are so childish and nasty — they’ve apparently all taken their own advice and learned their social skills from kids rather than adults.


    Comment by
    Skip Oliva
    December 12th, 2004
    at 12:02 pm

    Interesting use of the phrase “traditional schoolroom setting.” In the context of human history, that “tradition” only dates back a few decades.

    Comment by
    Daryl Cobranchi
    December 12th, 2004
    at 12:10 pm

    What– is Rob Reich some (anti)-homeschooling God? I think every big article on the topic has sought out a quote from him. Just because he wrote one lame paper on homeschooling, does he get to base his entire career on us?