Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Homeschooling IS a Control Issue
For some reason this topic is on my mind. Education is a big topic and not so big of a topic in the upcoming election. Both candidates I feel are pretty solid in this area, so pardon the post as it will not be ripping on Obama. I will miss ripping on him. However, this is a topic of which I am not an authority on, but have an opinion anyway. Call it an educated one, call it an uninformed one, but an opinion nonetheless. I do understand a parent embracing the homeschooling philosophy for several reasons. Control of curriculum and topics, friends, diet, convenience and school shootings to name only a few. However, in my mind the decision to home school is made by control freak parents. I hate to generalize, OK no I don't, I like it and let me do some more of it. Let me just preface it by saying that I know kids who were home schooled and are among the best and the brightest kids in school, so this is not the issue I have with it. The issue is the controlling aspect of what children are taught and the arrogant nature in which a parent deems their curriculum better or of a higher standard. While public schools are struggling, for the most part I think education today is better than it has ever been. Yet, we continue to complain about American competitiveness on a global scale. Breeding little compete-mongering children is not a good formula for society. It creates a mean kid atmosphere and quite frankly kids should spend more time in the "being nice" classroom and less time in the academic classroom. But that is just me. At any rate, home schooled children are taught a strict philosophical view that is controlled by the parent. Also, home schooling parents act superior to the public school system, and I think a community should support its local schools. I don't think that the social aspect is too much of a problem, but I do think I would feel isolated as a kid from the camaraderie of school spirit and school pride. Its a huge part of childhood that home school kids miss out on. Nothing better than a pep rally before a sporting event. So what is the purpose of home schooling? Is it so parents can micromanage what goes into the impressionable minds of their kids? If so that philosophy stinks. What is it they think about the outside world? Are they better? Is the world so evil that the education that comes from a secular institution is sub-par? This is a self-righteous attitude of educational superiority that in my opinion is detrimental to our society. Kicking out little programed kids is not healthy for the promotion of an expanded thought processes. It would be easy for me to have my son stay home so I could control, who his friends are, what he learns, what he eats and feel warm inside because he is protected from a dangerous world. I take issue with this aspect of homeschooling. However this is America. Do what you want. At this point I may be wrong, but it just seems that control over a child's every move and every thought isn't so healthy.