CNN had a very neutral home school report today. It was almost a very positive report, but of course they had to reiterate some stereotype thinking. The article itself, which you can read here is very positive: http://amfix.blogs.cnn.com/2010/09/21/communal-homeschooling-on-the-rise/
The issue I had was with the onscreen reporters. I understand they have to report on a number of issues and homeschooling is probably something they did not take time to research and it was not a big part of their day. So I do not blame them, but I do want to answer some questions they brought up.
How do they know they are not falling behind or how do they get caught up to other children? They then touched on the fact they are tested yearly, and the “parents” say they are doing well. This is true, but you don’t have to ask the “parents” you can look at the statistics. According to research by Dr. Brian D Ray, NHERI.org, “Repeatedly, across the nation, the home educated score as well as or better than those in conventional schools 15 to 30 percentile points higher.” It is not a maybe homeschoolers are doing well according to their parents, it is a Statistical FACT! Perhaps a better question would have been what can parents who send their children to a traditional school do to keep up with their homeschooling peers?
This is the question our Government needs to answer. I believe until they answer this question a teacher who spends 8 hours a day, for 8 months and never sees the child again can only have a limited impact on that child no matter how much they care and try. A child is not meant to learn from 1 Adult with 29 other kids distracting them.
They also brought up the fact that parents are trained teachers and how that is an issue. Another interesting fact according to 2009 study by Dr. Brian D Ray, NHERI.org, “Whether homeschool parents were ever certified teachers is not related to their children’s academic achievement.” So this thought that a Mother or Father who is not traditionally trained in teaching can’t do a good job is incorrect. The text books that homeschool students use are designed to be read and self teaching. Meaning a parent can read it and the child can read it and they can understand it together. As the children get older the less they need to ask the parent to help. The parent doesn’t have to know everything about everything, they just need to know how to read the text book and help the student out where he is struggling. If you don’t feel confident in helping someone 20+ years younger than you understand something, it is probably because you are not confident in the education you received. So instead of trying to understand that subject and struggling through it you want to send your child to the same education system that made it so you couldn’t teach someone a basic math, science or grammar fact, that my friend is the definition of insanity.