Utterly Meaningless » Blog Archive » IF YOU CAN’T SEE THE DINING ROOM TABLE …
  • IF YOU CAN’T SEE THE DINING ROOM TABLE …

    Filed at 11:19 am under by dcobranchi

    … in the picture, do I still get my coin?

    Perhaps I read this piece too fast, but I didn’t see even a token critic quote. Still, some things of interest:

    Since the 1980s, the home-schooling movement has been more widely adopted by diverse religious and secular groups. The majority of today’s home-schooling families – 60 percent – are evangelical Christians, said [HSLDA’s Ian] Slatter . In the early 1980s, evangelical Christians made up 90 percent of home-schoolers.

    Where is it again they’re getting that 60 percent figure?

    Also, I’m pleased to see we’re finally capturing the crucial exhibitionist demographic:

    Dawn Thompson of Norwalk, who home-schooled her three daughters, said five years ago home-schooling conventions were filled with women who seemed conservative – long hair, modest clothing, no makeup.

    “Now, you go to a convention, and there are moms with short hair, tattoos, short shorts,” she said.

    On a more serious note, 45 percent of (officially registered) Iowa homeschoolers are in state-run hybrid programs:

    According to a Des Moines Register survey of the 367 school districts in Iowa, 9,171 students are being home-schooled this year. […]

    Families can work with a district home-school assistance program. A visiting teacher will make regular home visits to verify that the student is making adequate progress.

    In Iowa, 4,128 students are in home-school assistance programs run by the state. Last year, 3,744 were in the programs, according to the Iowa Department of Education.

    You’d think at least the aforementioned “60 percent” would realize the danger of dancing with the devil.

    9 Responses to “IF YOU CAN’T SEE THE DINING ROOM TABLE …”


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

    Definitely school-at-homers. It’s worth a nickel, sure.


    Comment by
    Michelle
    December 12th, 2004
    at 4:52 pm

    Let me throw the mattress out before I jump, as my husband likes to say, and warn you that I’m feeling a little hormonal (pregnancy) and if I come off as rude I really don’t intend it. I’m trying to phrase this as pragmatically as I can.

    Why do the guys here at H&OES spend so much time trying to convince the world that HSLDA does not speak for a significant percentage of homeschoolers? HSLDA represents at least 70,000 homeschooling families across the nation. That’s not insignificant.

    If HSLDA’s mission and views do not reflect those of the majority of homeschoolers, then why are there not other equally large groups making equally significant impacts on the way the public views homeschoolers? If HSLDA represents a vocal minority, then why doesn’t the majority speak up?

    Could it be that most homeschoolers *don’t* really disagree so much with HSLDA, that a majority of us really *are* conservative Christians?

    To be honest, I think that if anyone is trying to speak on behalf of large numbers of homeschoolers who don’t agree with them, it’s H&OES.


    Comment by
    Tim Haas
    December 12th, 2004
    at 5:54 pm

    The way I look at it, the majority has already spoken by not joining HSLDA, to which — by the admission of the organization’s own numbers — only 10 percent of homeschooling families subscribe.


    Comment by
    Chris
    December 12th, 2004
    at 7:58 pm

    “If HSLDA’s mission and views do not reflect those of the majority of homeschoolers, then why are there not other equally large groups making equally significant impacts on the way the public views homeschoolers”

    $$$$$$$$$. HSLDA has a many year head start with fund raising, and once upon a time there was significant legal risk in homeschooling, making the $100 fee from HSLDA a good investment (maybe). Those days are long gone, and HSLDA nows spends way too much of its time meddling in non-homeschooling related topics. Right now HSLDA.org features the Marriage Protection Amendment on the home page. Can somebody explain to me how support of that effort is homeschooling related?


    Comment by
    Daryl Cobranchi
    December 12th, 2004
    at 8:49 pm

    HSLDA now uses the same excuse as the g-schools– “It’s all for the children.”


    Comment by
    Jill Drake
    December 13th, 2004
    at 9:23 am

    “$$$$$$$$$. HSLDA has a many year head start with fund raising, and once upon a time there was significant legal risk in homeschooling,”

    So fine, they had a many year head start and are well funded. However one would think that another national organization for homeschoolers would rise on its own, based on demand. It has not. I don’t understand why, maybe because homeschoolers are too darn busy?? I am not a member of HSLDA, nor am I religious. I sure would like to see a competing organization rise, that would stick to homeschooling only issues.


    Comment by
    Tim Haas
    December 13th, 2004
    at 9:30 am

    One does exist: the National Home Education Network — nhen.org. NHEN spokespeople such as Laura Derrick and Pam Sorooshian are frequently quoted in national stories.


    Comment by
    Jill Drake
    December 13th, 2004
    at 10:46 am

    “One does exist: the National Home Education Network — nhen.org. NHEN spokespeople such as Laura Derrick and Pam Sorooshian are frequently quoted in national stories.”

    Fair enough, it exists. But if a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it…
    No one knows about this organization, yet everyone knows about HSLDA (and I’m talking homeschoolers here with ‘everyone’). I have not met a homeschooler who didn’t know, at least on a peripheral level, about HSLDA. Yet I think I am probably the only one in a fairly wide circle of HS friends who knew about NHEN. I have have even visited their website forums, which have posts very infrequently – like once a month or less! So either they are getting no traffic or no one has anything to say. Since I’ve noticed all kinds of other forums for HS get massively chatty folks, I’m thinking it is the no traffic problem.

    What I want is an active group who markets themselves to homeschoolers the way HSLDA does – but sticking to HS only issues and keeping out of the religion business. None exists. Until one does (or NHEN chooses to significantly raise their profile), HSLDA will continue to dominate.

    I have been to homeschooling conventions in two states (yea me 😉 and HSDLA has been at both very prominently, yet NHEN has not been at either, or if they were maybe they were stuck in a corner somewhere!


    Comment by
    Daryl Cobranchi
    December 18th, 2004
    at 4:53 am

    Jill,

    The difference is that HSLDA is paid to be there (or at least their representatives are). If you (or NHEN) had a budget of $7M/year, you’d probably be able to go to as many conferences as you wished. You’d also have money to go lobby Congress or push for stupid non-homeschool related laws. Remember IAATM. That’s why HSLDA has to continually issue “eLerts”– got to keep the kiddies (us) scared so the money keeps flowing.

    NHEN is a purely volunteer organization. There are no dues. There is no money. All they do is work to support other homeschoolers through advice and by working at the state level when real issues arise.

    And, yes, I’m a member.