This week, the US Department of Education Secretary, John King, spoke at a breakfast and his comments on homeschooling have startled most people who follow the issues in this country. While he admitted that some homeschooling parents do a great job, he expressed concerns that homeschoolers at large do not get “rapid instruction” and “diverse learning opportunities” like their public school peers.
What Obama’s Education Secretary got wrong is that homeschoolers do get an amazing array of educational opportunities, which public school students can only dream about. Also, the “rapid instruction” in public schools renders 2/3 of eighth graders incapable of reading proficiently. Should we be interested in education which promotes “rapid instruction” methods?
Let’s face it. We all know some homeschooling families who don’t do much with their children in the name of this or that principle or simply out of laziness. Recently, a library director told me people like that have been around since the 60s and 70s. She was around back then. Unschooling can turn out some great results and then some not so great results.
At the end of the day, who can measure success and how? Some kids are not gifted in math, but they excel in foreign languages. Other kids play the violin and have very little interest in computers. I get it. But there are those families who neglect their “homeschooled” children just like there are public school families who do not stay involved in their children’s homework, activities, and friends.
When the family does not work together for the education of the child, the child suffers. As a result, the family suffers. The breakdown happens at every level.
But just because some people make a mockery of their freedoms does not mean all people should lose their freedoms. Just because some parents give homeschool a bad name does not mean that all homeschoolers should be given a bad name.
Make no mistake about it! What you hear out of the mouth of John King is the same message in a Democratic White House and Congress. I don’t usually get political on my homeschooling blog, but this statement from Obama’s Education Secretary tells me the Democrats are scared of private initiative whether in business or education.
Their agenda is clear, too: they want a Nanny State to keep everybody in check. With less than two months before the election, I think you should vote and vote wisely.