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I wonder how many parents decide to homeschool because they realize they are spending so much time on (inane) homework for their first graders and all-day kindergarteners that they might as well just quit b&m school to homeschool.  

 

I don't see the load-em-up homework, one-recess-a-day, never-ending testing philosophy going out of style any time soon.  

 

 

 

 

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Standardized testing is the water we now swim in.  Even if we swim against the stream, this is the water.   Science (and every wise person who has spent time working with children) tells us a great

I do not think "the government" is responsible for the quality of the schools. Society as a whole has apparently decided that "fairness" is the top priority, and that differentiation is unfair, can le

My guesses: 1. Homeschooling will become more prevalent because of several factors: a) declining public school quality b) more homeschoolers = more visibility= more people who know somebody who doe

Yes, I should have stated this differently and left off the at home part.  When I say they want to recreate school it means take their kids to some building where groups of same age peers move from class-to-class each taught by someone else.  So, they really want ps school and to do very little, if any, at home.  If that's what they want to do, fine.  It is a trend I see that seems to be new. 

 

Even the traditional curriculum was done at home with just your own kids and you were the teacher.  And, yes, there was often a desk, a flag, recess and so on.  This newer version of recreate school seems to be a true copy of ps, just smaller and with the founding parent being the director.  That is a different environment from the past years of homeschooling, at least to me.

 

 

I would imagine that these are people who don't homeschool because of some ideology or because they are against school as an institution - but who are simply dissatisfied with the quality of public schools.

I would gladly have sent my children to a different kind of school, because my issues were not with school per se, but with the abysmal academic level. Some people have the alternative of private schools, but for others this does not exist, and so they are looking to recreate a private school like environment. I see nothing wrong with that, and I do not see home schooling in the home by the parent as superior to group teaching by an expert.

 

 

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If a back to basics movement hit fast enough, we might see some publishers republish old editions as "classic editions". Saxon 1st edition and Spalding 4th edition would be scooped right up if the price was right.

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Where I live charter schools aren't much of a debatable issue anymore.  25% of AZ school kids attend charter schools. 

 

I think the biggest shift will be a move to "a la carte" outsourcing.  I think there are people who are homeschooling right now that don't really want to be homeschooling for most things.  They want small classes with different teachers using different methods to pick and choose from for most or all of their child's K-12 education.  I think states need to legally define and protect this option.

If the economy keeps dragging or declining I think we're going to see fewer people homeschooling. 

 

More secular people are homeschooling because of academic or lifestyle reasons. Even among very religious people there increasing numbers homeschooling for academic reasons.

IRL general support groups are on the decline.  With support online I think people can have their questions answered and needs met by online groups with wider ranges of people 24/7 instead of having to schedule a get together in person with the one or two groups closest to them that may or may not be a good fit for them or their kids.

 

My husband has worked from home for 18 years now.  He has done all the Jr. High and High School level maths and sciences with my kids in the evenings and on weekends. He's always read aloud to them daily and played logic and strategy games with them on a weekly basis.  I don't know any other dads who do that.

 

We're getting more people with passive mindsets and fewer people with active mindsets. I think the social and legal unacceptability of early homeschooling filtered into the homeschooling movement a â€can do" type and thick skinned of person who could do whatever was necessary without any outside support.  Many didn't even know other homeschoolers at first.  They wrote their own curriculum, fought the legal battles and could handle not having social support or social acceptance.  Those people spoke at conventions I attended.  We got it drilled into our heads that it wasn't a matter of if we needed to tweak or modify materials, it was a matter of when and how.  It wasn't a matter of if we needed to create our own groups to meet our social or academic needs, it was a matter of when and how. 

Now, I have to say, that "can do" attitude is getting far less common among new people who expect to find something that's a great fit without any modification on their part.  When what they have isn't working, they ask for help, but expect it to come in the form of someone else creating something that works for them and they resent being given DIY (Do It Yourself) advice.  I think there's some growing resentment about that among those of us with DIY experience. Veterans get tired of saying it and hearing excuses.  Newer people get tired of veterans telling them what they don't want to hear. Comradery suffers some because of it sometimes.

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I'm afraid the same people who are jumping on the homeschool bandwagon to get out of common core are the same ones that are going to end up asking for more regulation or be ok with testing. :huh:  These are the same people that are recreating school at home. I'm reminded of the s/oHOA thread where I talked about Oregon and Washington disliking Californians that move there and try to turn their state into CA. Same thing applies here. Homeschooling is a completely different mindset than most of the educational refugees can wrap their head around immediately. I'm happy it's becoming more accepted, but I'm not so sure becoming mainstream is a good thing. 

 

I have also noticed on sites like Edutopia and Mindshift a trend for ps to mimic homeschool philosophies or styles. Maybe it's just educational philosophies that everyone uses, I'm certainly not an expert. I do think there is going to be more blurring of the lines between ps and homeschool. I can't help but think of the Michelle Rhee quote (not that I'm a fan)

part of the reason why the mayor was able to take control of the school district was because close to 40 percent of the school-aged children in the city were in charter schools, plus you had another couple thousand who were ... in private schools on vouchers, and it created the environment such that even the most staunch defenders of the status quo looked up and said, "Holy crap, if we don't do something now, in 10 years there is going to be no D.C. public school system. It's all going to be charters." And so even the people who didn't want things to change all that much sort of came to the realization that there needed to be something that happened. And so that gave us the leverage that we needed to be able to enact the significant changes that we did in the system. ...

 

Same thing could happen with homeschooling. People here are jumping on any charter school the second they hear about it. Whether or not it would be a good fit for their kid is lost in the rush to flee the overcrowded poor performing school system. People are hungry for some kind of fix. 

 

 

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Varies here by state. My own state is not keen on homeschooling. They find us a nuisance and would like us to go away. As the community grows, the concern rises.

 

 

In my state, the government is content to leave us to it, and that works just fine until you find yourself in the judicial system. If you're heading there, you cross all your fingers and toes that you don't get an anti-homeschool judge. 

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Varies here by state. My own state is not keen on homeschooling. They find us a nuisance and would like us to go away. As the community grows, the concern rises.

 

I highly doubt there is political will to outlaw us though. I have no difficulty imagining that people will still be homeschooling here in 20 years.

 

I think Florida has learned that virtual schools relieve the brick and mortar schools of overcrowding and also provide an alternative for some kids that emotionally, physically or even behaviorally do not/cannot be in a classroom. Our state's virtual program now offers all kinds of classes, APs, driver's ed as well as extracurricular clubs. Counties can opt in and use the same virtual school software and stucture but provide their own supervising teachers and keep the money within the school district. 

 

Interestingly, the online school draws students from across the board -- homeschoolers, public and private schoolers -- and in a lobbying influence for *alternative education* on its own. 

 

Lisa

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I'm afraid the same people who are jumping on the homeschool bandwagon to get out of common core are the same ones that are going to end up asking for more regulation or be ok with testing. :huh: These are the same people that are recreating school at home. I'm reminded of the s/oHOA thread where I talked about Oregon and Washington disliking Californians that move there and try to turn their state into CA. Same thing applies here. Homeschooling is a completely different mindset than most of the educational refugees can wrap their head around immediately. I'm happy it's becoming more accepted, but I'm not so sure becoming mainstream is a good thing.

 

I have also noticed on sites like Edutopia and Mindshift a trend for ps to mimic homeschool philosophies or styles. Maybe it's just educational philosophies that everyone uses, I'm certainly not an expert. I do think there is going to be more blurring of the lines between ps and homeschool. I can't help but think of the Michelle Rhee quote (not that I'm a fan)

Same thing could happen with homeschooling. People here are jumping on any charter school the second they hear about it. Whether or not it would be a good fit for their kid is lost in the rush to flee the overcrowded poor performing school system. People are hungry for some kind of fix.

Can I just say that I think the term "educational refugee" is perfect?

 

I see the same rush to charter schools. Especially our Montessori charter. It's just "better". They aren't sure why it's better, but it is. Any talk of "fit" is received with blank stares.

 

And I think in the homeschooling community this rush is just going to co-ops like CC. People are creating their own schools. And to be clear, I don't blame them. Not everyone wants to homeschool. A third option is nice.

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I see more and more of my friends considering or taking up homeschooling in lieu of private schools (primarily secular URMs) due to disparate treatment and inadequate academics. These folks rec'd selective university educations and don't feel that schools are willing or able to prepare their children for the same. Testing and accountability measures are not a problem for these folks.

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Right now, I'm seeing 2 groups of folks taking kids out of schools:

 

*those disgruntled with the values/climate/methodology of schools in general and

*those who have a child with LDs and the school is not meeting the needs

 

And I'm seeing an uptick in:

 

*those going straight from brick and mortar school to an online, public FREE virtual school. 

*those going straight from brick and mortar school into a structured, paid-for program like CC or a university model school.

 

I have seen little investment or independent research from the above two groups into the methodologies and curricula available in homeschooling. It's a sign-me-up and what-should-I-buy approach. <----- This is a huge loss to the parents, IMO, because I'm not sure they have stepped outside the box far enough, read and researched enough, or explored enough to see all the options in the wide world of homeschooling. 

 

I think in any area, the trend (in America) follows the money.  So we might see more districts offering virtual schools to keep money in the home and we will definitely see more providers online or IRL offering paid classes to homeschoolers.

 

One trend I personally haven't seen: more dads involved in the day to day of homeschooling or in making the overall education decisions. Among my  neighbors, church, friends, acquaintances and homeschool groups, it still seems pretty mom driven.  Is that the case where y'all are? Even when the parent splits the day, mom is more likely to school in the morning and dad is more likely to take afternoon extracurricular shift. 

 

Lisa

:iagree:

 

I was one of those parents who went from B&M ps to online virtual when my oldest started 5th. I did this with purpose and forethought to give myself some time to see if I could do it especially with my then toddlers and babies time to get a little bigger along with research methods. After seeing first hand what the virtual school did, I thought to myself ....pffffttt I got this.  :coolgleamA:

 

I'm pretty sure we've all seen or heard people who say Ack! I'm so mad at the ps that I pulled my kids out of school!! Now what do I do? or then immediately go into "I need the name of a virtual school now." (mid-year which I wouldn't ever recommend) As if little Sammy is handled now that I've signed him up for virtual school. My work is done. 

 

 

Can I just say that I think the term "educational refugee" is perfect?

I see the same rush to charter schools. Especially our Montessori charter. It's just "better". They aren't sure why it's better, but it is. Any talk of "fit" is received with blank stares.

And I think in the homeschooling community this rush is just going to co-ops like CC. People are creating their own schools. And to be clear, I don't blame them. Not everyone wants to homeschool. A third option is nice.

 Wasn't me. Homeschool Mom in AZ has the article that originated from. I do think it is perfect. 

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We are homeschooling because of specific needs of my son that probably couldn't be met by any public or private school.  It's why we found a way to continue even when I had to go back to work.  We were lucky that I was able to get right back into pretty decent paying work that doesn't make it ridiculous to be paying a private teacher.

 

I know a few homeschoolers doing it for religious or don't agree with the politics of the public school reasons, but way more that  are doing it due to special needs, health problems, acceleration, allergies or other reasons that do not include problems with the idea of public school itself.  I am seeing an increase in people asking about homeschooling in the groups I belong to because of problems with common core and testing.  Many seem to want something easy to implement like a fully online school, where they don't have to come up with plans, curriculum or teach anything.  Since virtual public school isn't a thing here (except one for at-risk teenagers in Newark), anything that's not traditional public school or charter school (also not many of those, only one in my county) is likely to be expensive.

 

NJ has no regulation not even reporting so the state doesn't even have any kind of list of who homeschools and who doesn't.  It has actually always surprised me that a state that regulates everything else should be so free-wheeling with homeschooling.

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More secular people are homeschooling because of academic or lifestyle reasons. Even among very religious people there increasing numbers homeschooling for academic reasons.

 

I am in this group. If we had a decent, private Christian school in our area, I would be open to my child(ren) going there. I would also be open to discussing public school if I felt it was academically decent. But, I teach in that district and I know how much is lacking in that system. So, due to the poor academics in our district, I will be homeschooling unless we move closer to the larger city in our area as there will be more options. 

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Also, I'm always frustrated IRL with other home schoolers who also claim that anything they do at home is better than the local schools and the idea that one is qualified to teach everything simply because one is the parent.  I think these two attitudes go a long way towards creating an atmosphere where others push for oversight of homeschoolers. :leaving:

 

Yes and no.  I don't think anything any homeschooler does at home is going to be better than the ps. That said, I do believe that anything WE do at home is most definitely better than the ps.   ;)  (I actually don't just believe it, I know it   :))

 

FWIW, I have had this attitude for a long time.  :lol:

 

ETA: should qualify that I am not suggesting other homeschoolers aren't!  Just that I don't think all homeschoolers are.  

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Yes and no. I don't think anything any homeschooler does at home is going to be better than the ps. That said, I do believe that anything WE do at home is most definitely better than the ps. ;) (I actually don't just believe it, I know it :))

And for a few of us in genuinely failing school districts, the flip side (with qualifiers) is nearly true: Given the dropout rate, almost anything we do at home is probably better than THAT school.

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I think the winds are shifting, but not in a way that is going to have a huge day to day effect. When I started homeschooling in the early 90's, I didn't fit in anywhere. I wasn't a crunchy, radical unschooling homesteader or a denim jumper Republican Christian. As I began to find my people, the aforementioned factions became nervous that homeschooling was going mainstream and the secular (or gasp! Omg! Classical) homeschoolers would spell the end of homeschooling as we know it. Didn't happen. Then in 2001 it was the virtual charters that spelled our doom. Here we are 13 years later and there are more homeschoolers than ever. I think this is just another semi-generational shift we're noticing.

 

We take precedent very seriously in this country. The laws have been made and I can imagine a HUGE fight if states began trying to change laws (or in some cases, constitutions) in order to rein in or further regulate homeschooling. I mean, PA FINALLY after a decade and a half just deregulated homeschooling in comparison to the old law. High regulation states already have crappy laws. Low regulation states wouldn't risk alienating their conservative base by attacking homeschooling. While it's possible a handful of individual states could add regulations, I don't believe it will affect homeschooling as a social force since it isn't federally regulated. I Do think the future of homeschooling will be more fluid as b&m schools use online options such as k12 or Kahn academy, virtual charters spread, and more schools offer part time or drop in options. Mostly as a way to recapture those tax dollars.

 

As for the common core fugitives using drugstore workbooks and flying by the seat of their pants, most will either pull it together or admit defeat and rejoin the enemy. I was of the former variety in the early days but I managed to figure it out. Maybe I'm too optimistic, I dunno. But I just can't see the doom and gloom

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I have also noticed on sites like Edutopia and Mindshift a trend for ps to mimic homeschool philosophies or styles. Maybe it's just educational philosophies that everyone uses, I'm certainly not an expert. I do think there is going to be more blurring of the lines between ps and homeschool. I can't help but think of the Michelle Rhee quote (not that I'm a fan)

Same thing could happen with homeschooling. People here are jumping on any charter school the second they hear about it. Whether or not it would be a good fit for their kid is lost in the rush to flee the overcrowded poor performing school system. People are hungry for some kind of fix. 

 

But 1) DC education *is* practically all charters now. Well over half the elementary school students in the city attend a charter. I only know a couple of families whose kids are in school who aren't in a charter - in both cases, it's because they happen to be in bounds for literally the best schools in the entire district.

 

And 2) Despite the popularity of the charters and the massive success of many (many of them are great schools), homeschooling is growing in DC. I mod a list here and it's growing massively among parents of younger kids. While I'm not a fan, Classical Conversations is opening a second center in another neighborhood. And there is an actual co-op for little kids with their own space not far from us. When we started homeschooling six years ago, it was *nothing* like this. We didn't know any other homeschoolers in the city really. Everyone was in the burbs.

 

So basically, I think that both the charter movement and the homeschool movement are growing. Maybe people are choosing between then to some extent and undoubtedly many people are choosing homeschooling to avoid testing or Common Core, but there's also clearly a group of people choosing homeschooling positively - as in, deciding to homeschool because they want to homeschool, not to get away from something.

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I would imagine that these are people who don't homeschool because of some ideology or because they are against school as an institution - but who are simply dissatisfied with the quality of public schools.

I would gladly have sent my children to a different kind of school, because my issues were not with school per se, but with the abysmal academic level. Some people have the alternative of private schools, but for others this does not exist, and so they are looking to recreate a private school like environment. I see nothing wrong with that, and I do not see home schooling in the home by the parent as superior to group teaching by an expert.

 

Right.  I never said one was superior to the other, just different than the thinking in the past.  The thread is about identifying trends, right?  That is what I am saying, I see this as a new trend.  And the above quoted response to you was just to further define it, not any kind of judgement statement.  Fwiw, I would send my kids to school too, if I could find the right fit for them.

Denise

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As for the common core fugitives using drugstore workbooks and flying by the seat of their pants, most will either pull it together or admit defeat and rejoin the enemy. I was of the former variety in the early days but I managed to figure it out. Maybe I'm too optimistic, I dunno. But I just can't see the doom and gloom

 

Agreed. I think if Common Core is the last straw for a family who wants to homeschool or has a bunch of other issues, then yeah, they're maybe going to stick with it. But as a primary reason to homeschool? Forget it. I don't think that'll take. They'll be a dip in the (nonexistent since no one tracks us comprehensively) statistics.

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Barb_, on 09 Apr 2015 - 4:58 PM, said:

As for the common core fugitives using drugstore workbooks and flying by the seat of their pants, most will either pull it together or admit defeat and rejoin the enemy. I was of the former variety in the early days but I managed to figure it out. Maybe I'm too optimistic, I dunno. But I just can't see the doom and gloom

 

 

 

 

Agreed. I think if Common Core is the last straw for a family who wants to homeschool or has a bunch of other issues, then yeah, they're maybe going to stick with it. But as a primary reason to homeschool? Forget it. I don't think that'll take. They'll be a dip in the (nonexistent since no one tracks us comprehensively) statistics.

 

Let's hope. :)

Or they'll be blissfully ignorant in their new motto anything is better than common core.

Edited by Plum Crazy
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How much longer will our current style of homeschooling be possible or desirable, even for us? Have you noticed any straws in the wind?

 

I've said before that I don't think we've got more than five to ten years of hs'ing as we know it. I think more people will be interested in hs'ing -- remember we've been hearing that prediction that our numbers will increase from 3% to 7% in  the very near future -- but I tend to think it might not happen that neatly. I think the dissatisfaction with ps will grow to that percentage but I can't envision so many families being willing and able to homeschool just because ps has become untenable. I think we'll see more UMS and private schools, and I am sure the charter debate will continue to rage on.

 

I think that as more options become available and mainstream, even many of our own ranks will abandon single family homeschooling to join and support those methods. Especially at the high school level, I'm sure I'm not the only one who would actually prefer a solid classical or UMS school to hs'ing.

 

And of course, part of my dire predictions have to do with political trends. That's a bipartisan statement - almost everybody but real outliers seem to believe that oversight and accountability will solve all the unsolveables in education and in the rest of society. As regulation increases, in attempts to protect and provide for all who currently fall through the cracks, freewheeling homeschooling will not enjoy even tacit societal approval for long.

 

That's the Tibbie report. I'll be watching to see if I'm anywhere near the mark.

 

What do you think? Even with our giant conventions and massive forums and endless piles of curriculum available in our over-saturated market, might we be the final wave of a very short phase of history? 1980s to 2020? Or will our grandchildren and great-grandchildren enjoy homeschooling freedom? Or will it be a moot question as their parents' generations forge new paths in education that make hs'ing unnecessary or undesirable according to the world they live in?

 

I think that as the general acceptability of homeschooling has developed, as it has become more mainstream and less eyebrow raising, a couple things have happened.  When I mention to someone that I homeschool, I often get a response that includes an explanation of why that other family doesn't.  Even when I haven't suggested that they should.  This happens especially when we have lived in areas where the schools are challenged or with families who have kids who are gifted.  I personally find this really interesting.

 

The other thing I've noticed is that more and more I hear or read comments from parents who are looking for homeschooling options that they can plug their kid into, without much effort on the part of the parent.  Moreover, they would prefer these resources were very low cost or free.  This always makes me cringe inside.  Not only because I am doubtful about the value of a lot of the all in one computer based homeschool options, but also because it seems that the parents want to have their cake and eat it too.  They want to assume all of the authority for educational choices, but still have everything packaged up and delivered to them with as minimal involvement on their part as possible.

 

 

One of the things I hope for is that there will continue to be a rise in high value courses via small groups or online sources.  We have really benefited from things like Lukeion for Latin and literature.  And I hope that there will eventually be a more open way for students to sit for AP exams than to beg schools to let them join in.  I think this will come, as the College Board moves into expanding more into the delivery of educational content and not just providing testing validation.  

 

I'd also love to see more states and universities provide competition to CB for high quality coursework.  

 

This may seem contradictory to my previous frustration.  But I think there is a difference between using an online class for high schoolers and plugging your 2nd grader in for several hours a day.

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Where I live charter schools aren't much of a debatable issue anymore.  25% of AZ school kids attend charter schools. 

 

I think the biggest shift will be a move to "a la carte" outsourcing.  I think there are people who are homeschooling right now that don't really want to be homeschooling for most things.  They want small classes with different teachers using different methods to pick and choose from for most or all of their child's K-12 education.  I think states need to legally define and protect this option.

If the economy keeps dragging or declining I think we're going to see fewer people homeschooling. 

 

More secular people are homeschooling because of academic or lifestyle reasons. Even among very religious people there increasing numbers homeschooling for academic reasons.

 

IRL general support groups are on the decline.  With support online I think people can have their questions answered and needs met by online groups with wider ranges of people 24/7 instead of having to schedule a get together in person with the one or two groups closest to them that may or may not be a good fit for them or their kids.

 

My husband has worked from home for 18 years now.  He has done all the Jr. High and High School level maths and sciences with my kids in the evenings and on weekends. He's always read aloud to them daily and played logic and strategy games with them on a weekly basis.  I don't know any other dads who do that.

 

We're getting more people with passive mindsets and fewer people with active mindsets. I think the social and legal unacceptability of early homeschooling filtered into the homeschooling movement a â€can do" type and thick skinned of person who could do whatever was necessary without any outside support.  Many didn't even know other homeschoolers at first.  They wrote their own curriculum, fought the legal battles and could handle not having social support or social acceptance.  Those people spoke at conventions I attended.  We got it drilled into our heads that it wasn't a matter of if we needed to tweak or modify materials, it was a matter of when and how.  It wasn't a matter of if we needed to create our own groups to meet our social or academic needs, it was a matter of when and how. 

 

Now, I have to say, that "can do" attitude is getting far less common among new people who expect to find something that's a great fit without any modification on their part.  When what they have isn't working, they ask for help, but expect it to come in the form of someone else creating something that works for them and they resent being given DIY (Do It Yourself) advice.  I think there's some growing resentment about that among those of us with DIY experience. Veterans get tired of saying it and hearing excuses.  Newer people get tired of veterans telling them what they don't want to hear. Comradery suffers some because of it sometimes.

 

:iagree:

I have seen a lot of homeschoolers who can't deal with looking at a schedule or booklist or curriculum and deciding they will do A, B and D, but not C and E.  Or who jettison an entire program because they dislike one facet of it.  (Of course, I've also seen some who completely rework a curriculum, don't like the result and then tell everyone how bad the curriculum is. :huh: )

 

 The dislike of the DIY element is also something I've seen in things like scout units.  I think that many have the idea that they will pay and someone else will run things without asking them to do things to help the group function.  

 

On a related note, my MIL has taught dance for over 50 years.  It's interesting to hear her talk about what parents can no longer be expected to be capable of.  For example, dance shoes for little kids often needed to have a short piece of elastic sewn across the instep to help hold them on.  She has parents who have no idea how to thread a needle to tack the piece of elastic on.

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I think the winds are shifting, but not in a way that is going to have a huge day to day effect. When I started homeschooling in the early 90's, I didn't fit in anywhere. I wasn't a crunchy, radical unschooling homesteader or a denim jumper Republican Christian. As I began to find my people, the aforementioned factions became nervous that homeschooling was going mainstream and the secular (or gasp! Omg! Classical) homeschoolers would spell the end of homeschooling as we know it. Didn't happen. Then in 2001 it was the virtual charters that spelled our doom. Here we are 13 years later and there are more homeschoolers than ever. I think this is just another semi-generational shift we're noticing.

 

We take precedent very seriously in this country. The laws have been made and I can imagine a HUGE fight if states began trying to change laws (or in some cases, constitutions) in order to rein in or further regulate homeschooling. I mean, PA FINALLY after a decade and a half just deregulated homeschooling in comparison to the old law. High regulation states already have crappy laws. Low regulation states wouldn't risk alienating their conservative base by attacking homeschooling. While it's possible a handful of individual states could add regulations, I don't believe it will affect homeschooling as a social force since it isn't federally regulated. I Do think the future of homeschooling will be more fluid as b&m schools use online options such as k12 or Kahn academy, virtual charters spread, and more schools offer part time or drop in options. Mostly as a way to recapture those tax dollars.

 

As for the common core fugitives using drugstore workbooks and flying by the seat of their pants, most will either pull it together or admit defeat and rejoin the enemy. I was of the former variety in the early days but I managed to figure it out. Maybe I'm too optimistic, I dunno. But I just can't see the doom and gloom

 

I've now homeschooled in three different states, and in two of the states at different times.  My impression is that it has gotten easier administratively to homeschool.  More things are accepted as proof of progress.  Paperwork is challenged less often.  School officials have been helpful with signing my kids up for PSAT and AP tests.

 

Having said that, I also had a horrible time with one community college in a state with very heavy use of charter home study programs.  The outreach coordinator who handled dual enrollment insisted over and over during our first phone call that there was no way for my son to register for dual enrollment unless he had three different forms of proof of homeschooling.  These three items were mutually exclusive in that no one would have all three.  Then he proceeded to explain that if ds was in a charter school, then he would only need that single document.

 

So as charter schools gain popularity as the means of providing parent directed education, it does make independent homeschooling more unusual.  Now that I'm on the verge of facilitating college applications, I'm particularly sensitive to the implications that homeschooling without an accredited entity to give a stamp of approval (no matter what the nebulous basis for that approval) may be looked at with some distrust.

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I do know a few ESL mothers who prefer something like K12 VA because they are worried about their english and they can't afford to send their kids to private schools. Their husbands are the main breadwinners.
A lady neighbor who is upset with the public school but is working full time is moving her two kids to private school next year. She would have used a "school in a box" if she could afford to stay at home.
I don't know any public school mom who is upset by common core. They are upset with the academics in general before common core started. Most of them have kids in Kumon or Mathnasium and some in Sylvan.

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Adults who were homeschooled as children will enter into the picture more. They will have their own opinions about homeschooling based on their experience. When they have children of their own, they may or may not homeschool. They may try public schools--which may give them new insight into why their own parents homeschooled them. How our homeschooled children turn out as grown ups will make a difference in the future of homeschooling.

 

The declining birthrate and the aging population will also affect homeschooling. Demographics matter. Education may not be the hot-button political issue when fewer voters are parents of school aged children.  

 

 

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And for a few of us in genuinely failing school districts, the flip side (with qualifiers) is nearly true: Given the dropout rate, almost anything we do at home is probably better than THAT school.

We are in one of these school district, too.  Oddly, that is not why we homeschool.  At one point, it was why we chose private school.  The homeschooling came later, for non religious and non academic reasons.  We rejected the public school long before we decided to home school, though.

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If homeschooling does increase, then I think that there will be a bigger market for --

     --seminars on how to homeschool

     --all in one curriculums that come with online support

     --counseling for parents that have come to the end of  themselves trying to make ends meet and homeschool and be perfect parents

 

 

So get busy all you entrepreneurs.  :) 

 

 

 

And I think that people will need to spend serious time thinking about how much regulation they want and get politically active according to their philosophy.  

 

 

 

 

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I live in New Jersey. It is a "don't ask, don't tell" state. Nothing is required of me. No testing, no notification, nothing.

 

This is rather amazing when you realize how big the teachers union is here (it made national news when our governor made them mad), and how over regulated we are here with other things. I was told by my township I would need to hire an architect to replace my back stoop steps. I had to pay off my car when I moved here because I couldn't get it registered unless the tiny bank that I had the loan with (which was way out of state) jumped though hoops that had to be done in person, more then a week apart. So it was easier to pay it off. That is just 2 examples of our insane regulations in this state.

 

My point with this is, if New Jersey can maintain this ease of homeschooling, I believe that as we grow in popularity, we will see less regulation, not more. Colleges are slowly adaption to the growing homeschool market. Also, I am 38, and I have seen in the last 20 years more of a shift in the values that is putting a higher value in one parent (not always the woman) staying home to care for children, especially in the early years. I could see this increasing to include homeschooling as well.

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:iagree:

I have seen a lot of homeschoolers who can't deal with looking at a schedule or booklist or curriculum and deciding they will do A, B and D, but not C and E.  Or who jettison an entire program because they dislike one facet of it.  (Of course, I've also seen some who completely rework a curriculum, don't like the result and then tell everyone how bad the curriculum is. :huh: )

 

 The dislike of the DIY element is also something I've seen in things like scout units.  I think that many have the idea that they will pay and someone else will run things without asking them to do things to help the group function.  

 

On a related note, my MIL has taught dance for over 50 years.  It's interesting to hear her talk about what parents can no longer be expected to be capable of.  For example, dance shoes for little kids often needed to have a short piece of elastic sewn across the instep to help hold them on.  She has parents who have no idea how to thread a needle to tack the piece of elastic on.

 

 

 So is this unique to new homeschoolers or are we seeing a generation as a whole that has a hard time with autonomy and self-reliance? If so, what factors are feeding it now?  If it was less true in generations past, what factors fed it then to the smaller percentages of people? How do we guard against it with our own kids?

 

I think there's a "boycott" mentality that is more prevalent in younger generations (maybe under 35ish-40ish years old.)   When it comes to engaging with businesses or performers, there's this new sense of all or nothing about their decision making. (On both ends of political/spiritual spectrum by the way.)  If Target or HSLDA or Starbucks or Chick Fil A or Apple makes a philosophical statement, business decision or charitable donation that doesn't align with their spiritual or political convictions, then they boycott now!

 

It seems to spill over into curriculum too. For example, if the evolutionary creationism in the first chapter of A Child's History of the World by Hillyer is too creationist for their brand of evolution, then they can't just skip those chapters and get on to the recorded history part.  If the first chapter of ACHOTW by H is too evolutionist for their creationism, then they can't skip it and move on to the history.  So, a very worthwhile book that could meet 85+% of their needs is now no longer being considered and many will wander and choose nothing for a long time because nothing is a 100% fit.

 

Or planning.  I don't how many planning threads I've seen and discussions I've listened to where people are frustrated with getting academics done in a timely way, but then they tell you they once planned out a whole year in every subject for every day, and since they didn't get everything done on time, planning isn't for them.  Now it's possible that's the case. It's also possible that planning some subjects may make more sense than planning everything or nothing.  Planning for a week or month at a time may make more sense than hyper scheduling every subject for every day. Setting a list of prioritized content and materials and a deadline may be just the thing.

 

  I'm worried we're losing the flexible thinking that makes adapting to changes a possibility.  Staying adaptable is essential.  Maybe we all need a recording of Tim Gunn telling us to “Make it work!†at the beginning of each homeschool day.

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Maybe because it's where I live but I don't think a two parent, single earner household is in anyway required to homeschool. Maybe to homeschool a lot of kids while maintaining a large country property but that's not the demographic here.

 

Most of the homeschooling families I know vary from the 2 parent, single income with mom at home and dad at work model in some way or the other. Examples I can mostly put many names and faces to: both parents work PT, two or more single parents share a home, high earning single parent pays for childcare during the day and schools nights and weekends, two parents off shift their schedules and use childcare a little, he stays home while she works, primary caregiver brings in a second paycheck with a contract or pt job, it's Seattle so there are definitely the young retired techies living off investments and random contracts here and there. There are also low income single parents who barely get by but for affordable housing options and hitting the food bank. I know parents who are both working artists and teach art classes while homeschooling and run a PT cottage school. Also, a number of gay and lesbian families here are homeschooling. I know poor homeschoolers, middle class homeschoolers and rich homeschoolers. I know homeschoolers who live in tiny downtown apartments, spacious homes in and out of the city, and small far flung farms and everything in between. We have religious homeschoolers and secular homeschoolers. Drive north of my home and it's more conservative/traditionalist, drive south and it is less so. Homeschooling works for a lot of different families.

 

No, it is not easy to homeschool when all adults work but it's not all that easy to homeschool period, now is it? It is however, with the right mix of resources and resolve, possible to homeschool and have all adults in the workforce in some way.

 

Homeschooling is a very non-traditional, go against the grain choice in a lot of ways and it fits that it would be an appealing choice to non-traditionalists. From what I have read and heard, homeschooling is gaining popularity in cities and my area is hardly alone.

 

Bluntly, I see no crisis nor am I at all concerned that homeschooling will cease to exist.

 

ETA- I will say that I know a number of single income dad at work, mom at home homeschooling families. Definitely when I say most of the HS families we know vary from that, it is a small majority, not a large one.

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Bluntly, I see no crisis nor am I at all concerned that homeschooling will cease to exist.

 

:iagree:

 

I do think things will continue to change. But the demographics here are similar to you. I do know a lot more families who are mostly one income, mom at home teaching the kids, but I know some where the father homeschools while the mom earns that income, others where the parents both work part or full time or something in between, and others that are in other ways nontraditional. And I assume that we'll see more families who don't fit the "mold" homeschooling in the future. Which is not a crisis to me. 

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I am one who pulled my kid out of B&M public school and put her into a virtual charter, for academic reasons. In my case, I went with the virtual charter because I only decided to leave the B&M in May, and I felt I needed more time to research homeschooling methods and curriculum before spending money. I also wanted to have some initial oversight, to make sure I would actually DO the teaching. Once I had done my research and felt confident in my ability to plan and execute those plans, we switched to traditional homeschooling and I have no desire to go back to the virtual charter.

 

I do see more families in my area unhappy with common core. In our co-op, we had a family join this year with 4 adult children who went to public school, but they just pulled out their fifth because of the common core craziness. The virtual charter we used had a mass exodus this year. Out of all my contacts, I personally only know 2 families still attending, and one is definitely leaving after this year.

 

I am hopeful that with the trend of more families leaving public school, there will be more public push for a voucher system. At some point, the curriculum companies will start backing it to get more money back, and I think those lobbyists will finally push it through.

 

Ruth

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And I think in the homeschooling community this rush is just going to co-ops like CC. People are creating their own schools. And to be clear, I don't blame them. Not everyone wants to homeschool. A third option is nice.

 

I am seeing the 3rd option as a way to help people who are overwhelmed with homeschooling and don't want to send their kids to public school as a viable trend.  I have a friend who uses classical conversations.  She gets easily overwhelmed and without CC doesn't always get school "done".  She was one of the never getting around to school people in the past.  CC has given her accountability and now she has to remain consistent.  

 

You have to admit, in the past, homeschooling moms where very much the type A, driven, organized, take charge kind of people.  Pioneers who chose to forge ahead and claim new territories.  The refugees who are escaping the public school system need supports and these quasi-school type situations can help.  I even started a CC group to try to give people the 3rd option.  It wasn't so much that I wanted it for my kids, I really wanted to give people who wanted to leave the public school system an easier way to go about doing that.  I think it's a good trend because it just gives more options.

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Like everything else in life, change is the only constant in homeschooling.

 

I've homeschooled since the 90's, and the biggest changes I've seen are:

 

- Increase in fear - fear of everything - common core, the government, and every 'ism' out there. Fear is the overwhelming emotion I get from the new generation of homeschoolers. For example, teaching language arts to homeschoolers has become challenging because of fear of literature. Families are scared of fairy tales, fables, Lewis, Tolkien, and Shakespeare. Crazy, but true. The belief that Christianity has to be separate from the intellectual life really concerns me in so many ways. I won't bother to go into all the long term implications of this, but it is definitely going to affect the future of homeschooling.

 

At least in our area, the fear of intellectualism seems to be the greatest threat to the homeschool movement, not the government.

 

- Also, there is a different idea of what homeschooling is. Back fifteen years ago, we were ecstatic to have a one day a week enrichment day with classes and the moms got to hang out and talk/learn about curriculum and the challenges we were facing. Now, at least in our area, "homeschoolers" go to classes all day, four to five days a week because we have an incredible amount of homeschool offerings for children of every age and because of the "fear of missing out" these parents enroll their students in as many co-ops and classes as possible. Often this means that the children's education is a mish mash of a variety of fun topics, but sometimes no solid foundation in math and language. This means that the students come to classes without having done their homework, because they have no time to do their homework. And the parents are okay with that.

 

I hope to see better homeschool parent education in the future, but I'm not sure that is really going to happen because we often don't like to admit our own ignorance. As is often the case, we are ignorant of our own ignorance and reject sound wisdom coming from older generations. Homeschool hubris is all too common.

 

 

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I'm happy to see the third option of virtual charters. I think that will save hsing from the people that shouldn't be hsing. This will slow the regs. I do think the long ago hsers must have been typeA. They probably didn't need regs.

 

I forgot about over crowded schools. I live in a state where everyone left and we can't afford big families. Most school districts are in debt and or closing buildings like crazy to make up for the loss in student count. I pay twice on my taxes for schools, once for their old debt and once for their current needs. I'm sick of paying for failing schools. This is something I think/hope my generation will fix.

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- Increase in fear - fear of everything

 

I hope to see better homeschool parent education in the future

 

I think there is an increase in fear to do with everything involving parenting, and maybe even involving everything in general.

 

Better homeschool parent education? Isn't that the stuff you teach yourself by reading some books/websites about homeschooling (and education in general), talking to other homeschoolers, etc? I'm not seeing how you'd improve homeschool parent education, since it has to come from the individuals. Unless you want the government to require aspiring homeschoolers to take a class on homeschooling...

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I think there is an increase in fear to do with everything involving parenting, and maybe even involving everything in general.

 

Better homeschool parent education? Isn't that the stuff you teach yourself by reading some books/websites about homeschooling (and education in general), talking to other homeschoolers, etc? I'm not seeing how you'd improve homeschool parent education, since it has to come from the individuals. Unless you want the government to require aspiring homeschoolers to take a class on homeschooling...

 

Yes, I agree that homeschool parent education is usually what comes from individuals, but what I see (and maybe this is just our area), is that new homeschool families aren't interested (maybe capable?) of researching homeschooling enough to have a basic understanding.

 

From my own experience, and from what I've been told from my friends who are long-term charter school teachers, is that new families have a totally different understanding of homeschooling, and that does not involve self-education. It is simply a switch of dropping off your child at a public school, to dropping off your child at local co-op classes. It's a different mind set than what was the norm 20 years ago, or even 10 years ago.

 

Do I want the government to require a class on how to homeschool? No! Do I have a perfect solution? I wish!  :001_smile: I think it is the lack of educational capital that is catching up with us, as someone said earlier.

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I am seeing the 3rd option as a way to help people who are overwhelmed with homeschooling and don't want to send their kids to public school as a viable trend. I have a friend who uses classical conversations. She gets easily overwhelmed and without CC doesn't always get school "done". She was one of the never getting around to school people in the past. CC has given her accountability and now she has to remain consistent.

 

You have to admit, in the past, homeschooling moms where very much the type A, driven, organized, take charge kind of people. Pioneers who chose to forge ahead and claim new territories. The refugees who are escaping the public school system need supports and these quasi-school type situations can help. I even started a CC group to try to give people the 3rd option. It wasn't so much that I wanted it for my kids, I really wanted to give people who wanted to leave the public school system an easier way to go about doing that. I think it's a good trend because it just gives more options.

I agree. I've reached some of the same conclusions but your conjecture about the personality differences between old school and newbie hs'ers is something I hadn't quite fleshed out in my mind. Thanks for articulating that. It does make a difference whether a person is a volunteer pioneer or a reluctant refugee. The néeds will be very different.

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Yes, I agree that homeschool parent education is usually what comes from individuals, but what I see (and maybe this is just our area), is that new homeschool families aren't interested (maybe capable?) of researching homeschooling enough to have a basic understanding.

 

From my own experience, and from what I've been told from my friends who are long-term charter school teachers, is that new families have a totally different understanding of homeschooling, and that does not involve self-education. It is simply a switch of dropping off your child at a public school, to dropping off your child at local co-op classes. It's a different mind set than what was the norm 20 years ago, or even 10 years ago.

 

Do I want the government to require a class on how to homeschool? No! Do I have a perfect solution? I wish! :001_smile: I think it is the lack of educational capital that is catching up with us, as someone said earlier.

I agree!

 

I usually refer panicked newbies to our local co-op that provides homeschool 101 classes every month.

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I only saw the above (red) on the WTM boards.  Never saw that, really, IRL in hs'ing groups back in the late '80's and all of the '90's, in all the different places I lived.  In fact, many of the hs'ers I saw seemed to lean more towards the loosey-goosey end of things vs type A peoples.  (myself included - definitely not a type A ... that would be my dh ;)).  I, myself, only got truly organized a while after I discovered WTM in 1999.

 

I haven't been doing this since the 80s and 90s, but some of the veterans I have met in the past were not the type As.  More like hippies. 

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This post resonates with me because one of the (many) reasons I took my children out of school was because they were being weighed down by homework while getting very little accomplished during the school day. I thought "Gee, I can do better than this in less time." So I think this is a very important factor in deciding to homeschool, also.

 

I wonder how many parents decide to homeschool because they realize they are spending so much time on (inane) homework for their first graders and all-day kindergarteners that they might as well just quit b&m school to homeschool.

 

I don't see the load-em-up homework, one-recess-a-day, never-ending testing philosophy going out of style any time soon.

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When I think back on the truly pioneer hs'ing families I knew in the 80s, none of them were like us in Type A intensity, but they were solid people who got things done. Learning wasn't optional. Sloth was unthinkable. This radical unschooling, sleep until noon, it doesn't matter if my 12yo can't read and my 14yo isn't ready for algebra, play video games all day long mentality was unknown to them.

 

They were up and doing, with focus and curiosity, whether they chased down rigorous homeschooling curriculum or not. Which they didn't, because it didn't exist. But they were at the library, working through a math textbook, building something in the garage, running a vegetable stand, working on a turf farm after finishing lessons, that sort of thing. Truly John Holt style, I thought.

 

I have far more in common with that "can do" generation than with certain upcoming homeschoolers (or parents, frankly) who want to be spoon fed and/or left alone.

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I have far more in common with that "can do" generation than with certain upcoming homeschoolers (or parents, frankly) who want to be spoon fed and/or left alone.

 

I'd like to be left alone, but hopefully that is not in the same category as wanting to be spoon fed.  LOL

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