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Article on the BBC about homeschooling

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Interesting how the article starts off describing violence in the school, implying that that's the reason this mother homeschools, and only gets around to admitting it's about learning in the fifth paragraph.


"Until recently, home schooling in the US was mostly practised by white families, but a growing number in the black community are now also turning their back on the public school system and educating their children at home. Why? "There were lots of fights and people getting shot," says Sonya Barbee.

"It was just too much. To me, it's not a good environment for a kid and even though I work full time, so it's really hard for me, I still feel like it's the right decision."

Sonya has not made life easy for herself. A single mother, who works for the US government, she now has the added burden of being a teacher to her 11-year-old son, Copeland.

It was not the violence, or even the fact that he was being bullied, that finally led to the decision to remove Copeland from his public school in what she describes as a "really bad area" of Washington DC, but the fact that he was "losing his love of learning".


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Each paragraph is only one or two sentences. Must we get offended at every single article about homeschooling? This one seems to be doing a good job pointing out lots of different reasons people are homeschooling.


For her, though, the main motivation was cultural - she wanted her sons to learn about their African roots and not "to believe that their history begins with slavery".


"African-American mothers, especially those who have boys, have a lot of trouble in the school system. The way the classroom is designed is more conducive for girls."


Another common complaint is that teachers are too ready to blame behavioural problems on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and encourage them to medicate their children with drugs such as Ritalin or Adderall.
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Each paragraph is only one or two sentences. Must we get offended at every single article about homeschooling?


You seem a little touchy on this subject.


What I found interesting was that the article -- in the first few paragraphs, which may be all that many readers get to -- might make readers think the only reason an African-American parent might homeschool would be because there were shootings in the school.


The general rule in journalism is that you get the most important facts into the first paragraph, because that may be all that anyone reads.


I also find this an interesting take because of the British books we've been reading lately that seem to assume all Americans go around shooting at things all the time. (Off the top of my head, I can only come up with Dracula at the moment, but I know there were others.)

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