Jump to content

Menu

The New “Calvert”?


Recommended Posts

I think there are a couple of issues talked about here.

1. Antipathy in homeschooling: wanting it to be easy, hands off, and free, and providers who encourage that when selling their products. 

2. Government regulations in homeschooling.

The two can go together, but they can also be separate.  I don't want government regulations in our homeschool beyond a yearly assessment, which I do think a parent should have to do because I see community as a thing to strive for and kids shouldn't be knowingly falling through gaps.  It'll affect their community later.  I am glad that most (all?) places recognize that the schools still have an obligation to provide the same therapies and such to students who need it even if they aren't at a public school.
I don't like programs that try to remove all interaction, either.  I think they should be tools, but not end-all/be-all programs.  I've seen what the fully hands off approach does and it's horrifying, especially in writing. 
On a different note, I'm really glad for programs like K12.  For people that did not mean to homeschool but are thrust into home-based instruction, this is perfect for them.  One of ds's friends has severe medical issues that are keeping him from a classroom right now.  K12 gives him access to teachers and live classes, works around his medical appointments, and gives him and his parents hope that he will be able to slide back into a classroom one day.

No one situation is the right one, but it's perfectly fine to maintain those designations and decide which is right for your family.

  • Like 7
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 258
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

First of all, from where I sit, the market is now flooded with this low end secular schlock. It isn't all evangelical anymore. T4L, Acelus/Power Homeschool, Connections, Calvert... plus all the things

They've jumped on the "I'm looking for something online that my kid can work on independently" bandwagon.  From a business perspective, they're keeping up with what consumers want.  Honestly, it kinda

Things like this make me feel like homeschooling is doing more harm than good at this point. And I guess I just wish homeschoolers themselves would temper the message when we evangelize it.

Just as a word of encouragement, I have recently moved to a largish metropolitan area, and I am on a zillion homeschool FB pages.  I almost never see anyone advocating for the plug ‘em in curricula choices.  Lots of encouragement about a wide range of curricular options, but almost all require hands on “old fashioned” parental involvement.

I do see lots of people offering advice for K12 and similar when people are frustrated with public school on the moms groups (NOT HS groups), but I assume that 99% of that is venting and leads nowhere.  The moms who actually venture onto the HS pages are encouraged to look broader and while people are sympathetic to challenging schedules and non-traditional hours, I really don’t see anyone suggesting that you can stick a kid in front of a screen, head to work for 10 hours, and successfully hs.

 I’m not saying this attitude isn’t out there, but I do think there’s a huge chunk of us hs newbies who are willing to put in the work and don’t plan on having technology educate our kids.

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, HomeAgain said:

I think there are a couple of issues talked about here.

1. Antipathy in homeschooling: wanting it to be easy, hands off, and free, and providers who encourage that when selling their products. 

2. Government regulations in homeschooling.

The two can go together, but they can also be separate.  I don't want government regulations in our homeschool beyond a yearly assessment, which I do think a parent should have to do because I see community as a thing to strive for and kids shouldn't be knowingly falling through gaps.  It'll affect their community later.  I am glad that most (all?) places recognize that the schools still have an obligation to provide the same therapies and such to students who need it even if they aren't at a public school.
I don't like programs that try to remove all interaction, either.  I think they should be tools, but not end-all/be-all programs.  I've seen what the fully hands off approach does and it's horrifying, especially in writing. 
On a different note, I'm really glad for programs like K12.  For people that did not mean to homeschool but are thrust into home-based instruction, this is perfect for them.  One of ds's friends has severe medical issues that are keeping him from a classroom right now.  K12 gives him access to teachers and live classes, works around his medical appointments, and gives him and his parents hope that he will be able to slide back into a classroom one day.

No one situation is the right one, but it's perfectly fine to maintain those designations and decide which is right for your family.

 

Exactly. True educational flexibility is achieved when there are many options because the needs of different families and different children cannot all be met the same way. I also have a friend who was grateful to have K12 because her oldest had type 1 diabetes and ended up in crisis several times in elementary school--she was too immature to really manage her medical needs on her own and the school failed to do so adequately. Her parents had no interest in homeschooling but needed to keep her safe so she came home and did k12 until she was old enough to manage her own medical condition away from home. Fortunately our local homeschool group was not of the "families enrolled in government programs can't participate" sort so she got to come to our homeschool PE class and make friends with other kids. I and my kids would probably go crazy with K12 but I'm glad the option is available for those who can benefit from it.

I will gladly fight for the right of families to homeschool independently, I will also fight for options such as virtual charters, part time school enrollment, and access to school based extracurriculars.

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, maize said:

 

I will gladly fight for the right of families to homeschool independently, I will also fight for options such as virtual charters, part time school enrollment, and access to school based extracurriculars.

All of that sentiment is lovely but it misses the point.  You are still writing a weekly two sentence summary of subjects covered and turning that info over to a government entity.  What happens when the gov’t official decides that you are not doing enough or they disagree with your curriculum choices?  

Edited by Heathermomster
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Ever since my oldest attended an online charter school in 5th grade, I have been trying to explain to people that it’s not as flexible as they make it sound, it’s more work than they say, but less than they literally assign and it takes a certain type of kid to sit in front of the computer all day and be able to stay motivated and on track. All not so easily explainable to newbies. Parents of kids that have struggled in ps are usually not well-matched to independent online school. It takes a lot of parental involvement. Good luck explaining that. 

Now I see too many recommendations for Easy Peasey, TFL, study.com, and all of those like them. I hear parents sending their high school kids to DE college level classes that are not ready for college level classes. I saw that a lot at my oldest’s early college charter where the idea of free community college was too tempting and kids were unable to get passed remedial courses or worse flunking and had to go back to ps high school with that in their college record. 

Choices only work when they are right for the child, the level parents can be involved, the resources available —from library access to money bit desperation and lack of time to research causes one to jump before looking. 

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, Heathermomster said:

All of that sentiment is lovely but it misses the point.  You are still writing a weekly two sentence summary of subjects covered and turning that info over to a government entity.  What happens when the gov’t official decides that you are not doing enough or they disagree with your curriculum choices?  

That’s one of the reasons I don’t ever want my state to force my kids to take standardized tests and tie them to my ability to homeschool. I disagree with tests being tied to teacher performance and I don’t think my ability to homeschool has anything to do with what they test for. By state law I am only required to cover certain subjects, but I am not required to follow state standards. How could my kids possibly do well unless I follow state standards and start to teach to the test?

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Heathermomster said:

All of that sentiment is lovely but it misses the point.  You are still writing a weekly two sentence summary of subjects covered and turning that info over to a government entity.  What happens when the gov’t official decides that you are not doing enough or they disagree with your curriculum choices?  

 

That's why I want independent homeschooling to remain a viable option.

I do not understand your point. Of course I would not choose something that was not a good fit for my family. There are lots of virtual charters that are less flexible than this one and I don't enroll my kids in those.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Plum said:

That’s one of the reasons I don’t ever want my state to force my kids to take standardized tests and tie them to my ability to homeschool. I disagree with tests being tied to teacher performance and I don’t think my ability to homeschool has anything to do with what they test for. By state law I am only required to cover certain subjects, but I am not required to follow state standards. How could my kids possibly do well unless I follow state standards and start to teach to the test?

I dislike standardized testing being tied to allowing a family to homeschool--tying educational options to a percentile score is ridiculous, someone will always be in those lower percentiles regardless of educational setting.

My state doesn't require any kind of testing or reporting. Doesn't even require particular subjects to be taught.

I'm not entirely sure what the best way to address cases of actual serious neglect is, but I don't think standardized testing is a good answer.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

From a legal perspective, there is a line between independent homeschooling and enrollment in a government program. Some places (mostly outside the US) offer not enrolment but a stipend to homeschoolers; the line gets a bit murky there. Also in places like my state where partial school enrollment is possible--a student who is registered as a homeschoolers but takes one class at the local high school is both privately homeschooled AND enrolled in public school; and that kid isn't doing anything truly different than they would be doing if that one class were at a community college rather than a high school.

Philosophically, there is a broad spectrum but the family with kids in a flexible charter that tailors educational methods and materials to their children and teaches one on one is more akin to the private homeschooler who does the same than they are to the family enrolled in an online charter with fixed curriculum and little parental involvement. That family, by contest, has more in common with the privately homeschooling family who opt for an all online curriculum program.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/31/2019 at 9:54 PM, Farrar said:

First of all, from where I sit, the market is now flooded with this low end secular schlock. It isn't all evangelical anymore. T4L, Acelus/Power Homeschool, Connections, Calvert... plus all the things like Thinkwell and all the virtual schools like FLVS and K12... it's everywhere now. Secular, online learning with extremely limited teacher involvement on any end, based around video+multiple choice quiz models either "overseen" by the parent or an outside teacher. I'm sorry, but it's crap. Like, it's such crap. I don't think it's better than the vast majority of public schools. Like, our local zoned school high school is really, really bad... and it would still be better than most of this stuff.

I want to be sympathetic to families who are using it. And it can be good for checking a box in an individual subject. Or it can be good for short periods for families who have instabilities like a chronic illness or a big move. Or who need a stop gap between B&M schools and don't know what to do or have the mental load time to invest in navigating homeschooling. Yes, absolutely.

But these programs don't sell themselves as being a resource or a tool among many or encourage parents to do additional teaching and oversight and enrichment. They sell themselves as being it, all you need, the whole thing, the kit and caboodle. And I really object to that. These are not better than school. Programs that don't demand any thinking outside the box, anything that can't be graded by a computer or in bulk by someone who has no serious contact with your child... I simply refuse to believe these programs are in the best interest of the overwhelming majority of kids.

Agreed. And might I add that programs which do not involve human contact do not foster humane development.  They add to the overall digital Harlow’s Monkey affecting the emotional development of our youth.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, maize said:

 

That's why I want independent homeschooling to remain a viable option.

I do not understand your point. Of course I would not choose something that was not a good fit for my family. There are lots of virtual charters that are less flexible than this one and I don't enroll my kids in those.

The charter school/voucher receiving type families and independent homeschoolers are not the same, and you are using the names interchangeably as if they are.  Charter school/voucher families are subject to governmental regulation and oversight.  Homeschoolers who receive no monies from the state or use charters are concerned about a regulated aka charter school/voucher version of homeschooling becoming the norm.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Heathermomster said:

The charter school/voucher receiving type families and independent homeschoolers are not the same, and you are using the names interchangeably as if they are.  Charter school/voucher families are subject to governmental regulation and oversight.  Homeschoolers who receive no monies from the state or use charters are concerned about a regulated aka charter school/voucher version of homeschooling becoming the norm.

Can you show me where I have used the terms interchangeably? I try to use homeschooling only for private homeschooling because I do understand the legal difference. I use home educating for all types of education in a home setting. It is possible I slipped up somewhere?

Places where there are government funding or reimbursements or tax credits but where a child is not enrolled in a school of some sort I believe usually consider families taking advantage of those programs to be homeschooling according to local laws so I think the term properly applies there.

Edited by maize
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/2/2019 at 10:12 AM, wendyroo said:

Slightly off topic, but...

My family is part of one of these partnerships, and while it is certainly not perfect, I do think you are underestimating the value it, and similar programs, offers to homeschoolers.

Our partnership gives us $3000 per child per school year for 4 non-core classes.  Right now those funds allow my boys to take a weekly art class at a local studio, a weekly trampoline/parkour class at a kids' gym, two hours of rock climbing a week, and to participate in three hours a week of Spanish immersion.

Since the district is only registering my kids as half-time students, they are only getting half the per student public funding.  In this district it appears that full time funding is about $8111, so half-time would be just over $4000.  A lot of the extra goes toward administrative costs, but I am glad that any surplus goes into their general coffers.  I am grateful to the school district for jumping through all of the funding hoops to offer my kids this opportunity, and I hope that any dollars they "earn" from providing us this service they put toward their brick and mortar programs that need extra funding.

I agree that these programs are coming under heavy scrutiny, but don't necessarily agree they won't be around in 5 years.  Students in our program are officially considered virtual students, and public virtual schooling is on the rise.  It is obviously a fairly new model, and everyone is having to figure out how to follow the letter of the law, but I know it is possible because the program we participate in recently "passed" a 100% audit through the state.

Wendy

Wendy,

I do understand the value of the program as I participated for three years before ours was shut down this spring after the superintendent mysteriously resigned.  I enjoyed the money for violin lessons and swimming and for awhile my daughter’s Greek class with Lukeion.  However, every semester there was some new requirement tacked on to be met.  The first year my son took an online IEW class, then the next year it was only non core classes.  Then it was silly quizzes every week that had so many grammatical errors and misspellings that even my terrible speller had to laugh.  Last year they dropped Lukeion languages less than a week before school started back in January despite approving it in December.  They also seemed incapable of mailing the check to the swim team to the correct address after three years of requesting that it be updated.  I put up with it, but I went into knowing it wouldn’t last and knowing that I would never sign up for something I wasn’t willing or able to pay for myself.

Here’s the deal...when I called HSLDA before we enrolled I was told we could join, they gave the caveat that they didn’t believe the programs are legal in the state of Michigan.  Michigan is one of the easiest states in which to homeschool, but is extremely explicit that no school money can go to private schools.  It isn’t just state law, but part of the Michigan Constitution for decades before homeschooling was a thing.  It is the reason why there are no education vouchers in the state.  You are allowed to attend non core classes AT THE SCHOOL because those are available to the full time students.  HSLDA said the partnership programs were flying under the radar, but would not be able to stand up to any sort of suit.  When you think about it, full time students don’t get money to take private music lessons or rock climbing classes or swim lessons (although with all the lakes, they probably should).  Traverse City recently lost their appeal with the State Board and owes $700,000 back to the state for classifying students as virtual instead of shared time among some other alleged abuses.  Part of the argument was they didn’t provide busing for regularly enrolled students to participate in the partnership offerings. It remains to be seen what they owe for previous years.  I don’t hope they go away, but once that tacit agreement to let them exist goes away and the stakes are so high, I don’t see the districts being willing to gamble as they clearly violate the state constitution.

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/charterschoice/2017/01/why_michigan_doesnt_have_school_vouchers_and_probably_never_will.html

https://www.interlochenpublicradio.org/post/tcaps-appeal-denied-will-pay-back-over-700k-state

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Heathermomster said:

The charter school/voucher receiving type families and independent homeschoolers are not the same, and you are using the names interchangeably as if they are.  Charter school/voucher families are subject to governmental regulation and oversight.  Homeschoolers who receive no monies from the state or use charters are concerned about a regulated aka charter school/voucher version of homeschooling becoming the norm.

 

Quoting this, but there are lots of sentiments similar in this thread. Not meaning it as a response to the particular quote.

I think that there are so many differences in these sorts of charter/voucher programs that it makes no more sense to categorize them together than it does to draw the line between government money and not. There are states that have higher levels of regulation for homeschoolers than the amount of regulation that some charter/voucher programs have for their participants. The amount of proving my schooling I would need to do in Pennsylvania or New York as a “true homeschooler” would be more than I had to do with most public independent charter schools in California. And the amount of evidence I had to supply to the charter school with an elementary student was less than half what I would have needed to supply for a high schooler with the exact same charter school. The independent study charter school system I am familiar with has much less regulation than the online public school options I am familiar with. All government-funded options are not the same. And not having government funding does not necessarily mean no regulation.

There are so many ways that homeschoolers create divisions among themselves: secular or religious, level of regulation, funding or not, K-8 or high school, trade school or non-competitive college or competitive college, taught entirely by a parent or outsourcing, structured or unschooling, and so on. In all these divisions, we often fail to see how much overlap there is.

  • Like 6
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Mom2mthj said:

When you think about it, full time students don’t get money to take private music lessons or rock climbing classes or swim lessons (although with all the lakes, they probably should).  

In the district we are partnered with, this is not true.

They are committed to flexible learning for all students, brick and mortar, virtual and shared time.  Every class that is available to virtual students is also available to brick and mortar students.  

In no way is this program providing state funds for private schooled students.  The students who participate are public school students...either full or part time.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, maize said:

Can you show me where I have used the terms interchangeably? I try to use homeschooling only for private homeschooling because I do understand the legal difference. I use home educating for all types of education in a home setting. It is possible I slipped up somewhere?

Places where there are government funding or reimbursements or tax credits but where a child is not enrolled in a school of some sort I believe usually consider families taking advantage of those programs to be homeschooling according to local laws so I think the term properly applies there.

Quote

Whether parents are doing the research and teaching their kids though does not depend on whether or not the kids are enrolled in a program with government funding. An independent homeschooler might sit their kids in front of a computer and let Monarch do the teaching, or enroll them in a bunch of tutorials or online classes. My kids are enrolled in a virtual school but the school has zero impact on what or how I teach aside from making it possible for me to pay for dance classes and foreign language tutoring. I'm still the one doing the research, choosing materials, and teaching my kids. What the school requires in return is a weekly report with two sentences per subject describing what we have done. When we were raising butterflies, our science report was usually an update on the caterpillars. 

Oh, and I get needed services for my kids, including speech therapy.

The world apart POV you describe has nothing to do with whether the child is homeschooled independently or through a flexible virtual charter, you will find a similar range of attitudes among families utilizing either option.

You stated that you receive a school voucher and that fact obligates you to turn in a weekly report with two sentences per subject describing what you have done.  You are answerable to a public school official. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Heathermomster said:

You stated that you receive a school voucher and that fact obligates you to turn in a weekly report with two sentences per subject describing what you have done.  You are answerable to a public school official. 

Absolutely. I never claimed otherwise?

ETA for the sake of clarity, not a voucher. My kids are enrolled in a distance program through a regular school district. They are public school students being educated at home. The school provides funding and we make reports for accountability.

 

Edited by maize
Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Heathermomster said:

The charter school/voucher receiving type families and independent homeschoolers are not the same, and you are using the names interchangeably as if they are.  Charter school/voucher families are subject to governmental regulation and oversight.  Homeschoolers who receive no monies from the state or use charters are concerned about a regulated aka charter school/voucher version of homeschooling becoming the norm.

 

My use of the term "independent homeschoolers" is meant to explicitly exclude families enrolled in charters/other public options.

When I use that term I am talking about those who homeschool without enrollment in a government school.

I did not use it to refer to programs such as my family is enrolled in right now. We are using a flexible public school option.

When I say I would fight for the right for families to homeschool independently I mean just that--schooling independent of government oversight should remain an option.

It just isn't the one I am using right now because there is another option that better meets our needs.

Edited by maize
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, maize said:

 

My use of the term "independent homeschoolers" is meant to explicitly exclude families enrolled in charters/other public options.

When I used that term I am taking about those who homeschool without enrollment in a government school.

I'm a dummy.  Thank-you for explaining.  I'm sorry.  We have been on the boards together for a long time and I did not recognize that you were using public options.

 

Edited by Heathermomster
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Heathermomster said:

I'm a dummy.  Thank-you for explaining.  I'm sorry.  We have been on the boards together for a long time and I did not recognize that you were using public options.

 

We've done both independent homeschooling and public enrollment options over the years, in multiple states.

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, maize said:

We've done both independent homeschooling and public enrollment options over the years, in multiple states.

Quoting myself here because it is a good jumping off point for reinforcing my point that methods of education and type of enrollment/registration are separate things. My kids' enrollment/registration status as public schoolers or homeschoolers has changed several times. What actually goes on in my home has never reflected those changes, my kids get the same sort of education either way.

When we use a public program I can pay for more extracurriculars and tutors and have easier access to speech services. In exchange I have more paperwork to deal with.

Nothing else changes.

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, maize said:

Quoting myself here because it is a good jumping off point for reinforcing my point that methods of education and type of enrollment/registration are separate things. My kids' enrollment/registration status as public schoolers or homeschoolers has changed several times. What actually goes on in my home has never reflected those changes, my kids get the same sort of education either way.

When we use a public program I can pay for more extracurriculars and tutors and have easier access to speech services. In exchange I have more paperwork to deal with.

Nothing else changes.

This is true for us as well.  What and how I teach my children at home did not change substantially when they became part time virtual students.  Really, the only changes were that I spent slightly less time at home on art and Spanish since the kids were taking classes outside the home in those subjects.  I still consider myself ultimately responsible for teaching my kids those (and all other) subjects, but I use the outsourced classes as parts of their art and Spanish education.

And just as becoming part time virtual students did not significantly change our at-home educational plans or philosophy, neither did it change the wildly differing styles of other participating families.  One of the leaders of the program has her kids enrolled as part-time virtual students (in middle school) and they are a die-hard unschooling family.  Others use Classical Conversations, Charlotte Mason, K12, game schooling, delayed academics, etc.

In many cases, the method of education really is completely separate from the legal definition of the student (homeschool, virtual, shared time, etc).

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, maize said:

 

Whether parents are doing the research and teaching their kids though does not depend on whether or not the kids are enrolled in a program with government funding. An independent homeschooler might sit their kids in front of a computer and let Monarch do the teaching, or enroll them in a bunch of tutorials or online classes. My kids are enrolled in a virtual school but the school has zero impact on what or how I teach aside from making it possible for me to pay for dance classes and foreign language tutoring. I'm still the one doing the research, choosing materials, and teaching my kids. What the school requires in return is a weekly report with two sentences per subject describing what we have done. When we were raising butterflies, our science report was usually an update on the caterpillars. 

Oh, and I get needed services for my kids, including speech therapy.

The world apart POV you describe has nothing to do with whether the child is homeschooled independently or through a flexible virtual charter, you will find a similar range of attitudes among families utilizing either option.

 

To clarify since I typed the post you quoted at 1 am after a very long day,  (as is today.....so if this isn't coherent,  I'm exhausted) I am discussing multiple issues that I see impacting homeschooling long-term:

1--as it becomes more popular and with less commitment to actually taking on the responsibility of teaching children, lower academic outcomes will be more common and lead back to the negative stereotyping that was prevalent when homeschooling was considered harmful to children's development and socially dwarfing children's acceptance of diverse views (Research Rob Reich, etc if you aren't aware of just what type of bias used to exist. It is not hyperbole.) My comments in this thread in terms of the OP are directed toward homeschoolers using those types of independent, no teacher required programs. I see those types of programs as undermining homeschooling rights long-term.

2--Even in the discussion about virtual public school vs independent homeschoolers, there is an underlying blur bc the discussion is about how little oversight you have and that makes it a perfect blend. My issue isnt with the option. I'm glad it works for you. My issue is connecting it to homeschooling. Bc the more people say how similar it is to homeschooling, the less controversial govt oversight over homeschooling becomes bc it really isnt much of a difference, only this. I am hugely skeptical bc long-term I do believe restricting rights is an objective. Call me nuts, but I think offering $$ was just a baby step. (Which goes back to the views of leaders like Rob Reich.) I hope I will be proved wrong and everything is as not just a facade with the govt motivation to draw in and then control.

3--mainly I believe that homeschooling being seen as a non-fringe positive alternative for a top quality education is starting decline and the hoop jumping that has been eliminated for college apps will begin to reverse and will start being required more again in the future bc applicants will be less qualified and the result will be seen with negative outcomes on campus. As a result, homeschooling applicants will be viewed as having questionable qualifications.  (I think it will take about the same amt of time it took to get to this point, about 15 yrs. At least I hope so bc my youngest will be sr in 8 yrs.) 

Here is example of very common dialogue from the early 2000s. I didn't read this article. I tried googling Reich and everything required subscriptions.  This included a quote from him and was free:

Quote


Homeschooling, once considered a fringe movement, is now widely seen as “an 
acceptable alternative to conventional schooling” (Stevens, 2003, p. 90). This 
“normalization of homeschooling” (Stevens, 2003, p. 90) has prompted scholars to 
announce: “Homeschooling goes mainstream” (Gaither, 2009, p. 11) and 
“Homeschooling comes of age” (Lines, 2000, p. 74). It has become so 
“unremarkable” (Stevens, 2003, p. 90), that one author claims, perhaps a bit too 
confidently, “everybody knows somebody who is teaching a child at home” 
(Gaither, 2009, p. 11). 


Despite this popular acceptance, homeschooling remains controversial. For 
example, it has been argued (most articulately by Reich, 2005) that homeschooling 
permits a kind of “parental despotism” (p. 113) so absolute that children may “fail 
to develop the capacity to think for themselves” (p. 114). They may grow up to be 
“unfree” (p. 114) and “civically disabled” (p. 111), and a pluralistic democracy 
such as ours depends upon citizens who are “self-governing and self-determining 
persons” (p. 113). According to this view, only governmental regulation that 
“requires exposure to and engagement with . . . social diversity” (p. 113) can 
ensure protection from “the civic perils of homeschooling” (Reich, 2002, p. 56).[/quote]

I do not believe that the opponents suddenly disappeared and embraced homeschooling freedom.

But I am in a very pessimistic mood today. Maybe it is really much ado about nothing and the present norm will just continue to grow positively with more variants being accepted outside of b&m education. (If I hadn't lived through the yrs of change and instead jumped in today, this is the view I'd probably accept and think the posting me is loony.)

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
Can't remove my comment to outside quote box
  • Like 4
  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Any time you have a broader and more diverse group of people being served, be it home educated students or public/private ones, the range of achievement and/or standards will be broader and more diverse too. That’s not a flaw, it’s a feature of expanded access, not just because of the education delivery model but because of the learners/families themselves. The same criticisms leveled at the very broad and diverse public/private school community will be leveled at the very broad and diverse home education community. The alternative is restricting access (based on?).

Edited by Sneezyone
  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

To clarify since I typed the post you quoted at 1 am after a very long day,  (as is today.....so if this isn't coherent,  I'm exhausted) I am discussing multiple issues that I see impacting homeschooling long-term:

1--as it becomes more popular and with less commitment to actually taking on the responsibility of teaching children, lower academic outcomes will be more common and lead back to the negative stereotyping that was prevalent when homeschooling was considered harmful to children's development and socially dwarfing children's acceptance of diverse views (Research Rob Reich, etc if you aren't aware of just what type of bias used to exist. It is not hyperbole.) My comments in this thread in terms of the OP are directed toward homeschoolers using those types of independent, no teacher required programs. I see those types of programs as undermining homeschooling rights long-term.

2--Even in the discussion about virtual public school vs independent homeschoolers, there is an underlying blur bc the discussion is about how little oversight you have and that makes it a perfect blend. My issue isnt with the option. I'm glad it works for you. My issue is connecting it to homeschooling. Bc the more people say how similar it is to homeschooling, the less controversial govt oversight over homeschooling becomes bc it really isnt much of a difference, only this. I am hugely skeptical bc long-term I do believe restricting rights is an objective. Call me nuts, but I think offering $$ was just a baby step. (Which goes back to the views of leaders like Rob Reich.) I hope I will be proved wrong and everything is as not just a facade with the govt motivation to draw in and then control.

3--mainly I believe that homeschooling being seen as a non-fringe positive alternative for a top quality education is starting decline and the hoop jumping that has been eliminated for college apps will begin to reverse and will start being required more again in the future bc applicants will be less qualified and the result will be seen with negative outcomes on campus. As a result, homeschooling applicants will be viewed as having questionable qualifications.  (I think it will take about the same amt of time it took to get to this point, about 15 yrs. At least I hope so bc my youngest will be sr in 8 yrs.) 

Here is example of very common dialogue from the early 2000s. I didn't read this article. I tried googling Reich and everything required subscriptions.  This included a quote from him and was free:

Thanks for explaining.

I do think there is cause to be wary, but I don't know that things are headed in a worse direction than they were in the past. My mother homeschooled in the 80's, my aunts homeschooled their children through the 90's and into the current century, I have had a fairly close view of changing trends over the years even though my own oldest is only sixteen.

The trend away from books and interaction with a human teacher and towards self teaching online curriculum is happening in schools as well as at home; the ever deepening infiltration of constant tech into our lives is bound to have broad social consequences but they are far beyond my ability to predict.

I don't have your views of the motivations behind programs that offer money. I have seen at least three types of motivation:

1) districts (usually smaller districts) that realized they can increase the funds flowing into their district by offering virtual enrollment--some of the funding gets funneled to the individual student, the rest goes into the general district budget. One of the schools we have used falls into this category. From my perspective it is a win/win scenario, overall educational funding here is shameful and I'm more than happy for them to get credit for my student if that helps provide higher teacher salaries and better opportunities for all the students in the district.

2) Charter schools started by homeschooling parents looking for better opportunities for their kids; we have also participated in one of these schools, I was close enough to know a lot of what went into getting it started and the motivations of the people behind it.

3) Charter schools started and run by companies for whom this is just another business. K12 charters fall into this category, as do several of the charters in California that have recently been in trouble for misuse of funds.

The latter two categories are mirrored in the brick and mortar charter school movement as well.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Sneezyone said:

Any time you have a broader and more diverse group of people being served, be it home educated students or public/private ones, the range of achievement and/or standards will be broader and more diverse too. That’s not a flaw, it’s a feature of expanded access, not just because if the education delivery models but because of the learners/families themselves. The same criticisms leveled at the very broad and diverse public/private school community will be leveled at the very broad and diverse home education community. The alternative is restricting access (based on?).

If this is directed toward me, I'm not advocating restricting access. I'm stating that I believe as homeschoolers have lower academic outcomes, more hoops will be required to prove your "edjukated." If you haven't seen 4 subject test scores being required and then dropped, maybe the thought of having to have your student prove themselves through them doesn't bother you.  The cause and effect is directly related to applicants and their performance on campus. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

If this is directed toward me, I'm not advocating restricting access. I'm stating that I believe as homeschoolers have lower academic outcomes, more hoops will be required to prove your "edjukated." If you haven't seen 4 subject test scores being required and then dropped, maybe the thought of having to have your student prove themselves through them doesn't bother you.  The cause and effect is directly related to applicants and their performance on campus. 


It is what it is. The requirements for state testing of PS students are largely the result of uneven outcomes too, even as colleges know which schools routinely produce college/career ready students and which do not. It seems totally counterproductive to me to complain about the verification that necessarily comes with increased access if there’s no intent to restrict home education options to those who do it the ‘right’ way.

Edited by Sneezyone
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, maize said:

Thanks for explaining.

I do think there is cause to be wary, but I don't know that things are headed in a worse direction than they were in the past. My mother homeschooled in the 80's, my aunts homeschooled their children through the 90's and into the current century, I have had a fairly close view of changing trends over the years even though my own oldest is only sixteen.

The trend away from books and interaction with a human teacher and towards self teaching online curriculum is happening in schools as well as at home; the ever deepening infiltration of constant tech into our lives is bound to have broad social consequences but they are far beyond my ability to predict.

I don't have your views of the motivations behind programs that offer money. I have seen at least three types of motivation:

1) districts (usually smaller districts) that realized they can increase the funds flowing into their district by offering virtual enrollment--some of the funding gets funneled to the individual student, the rest goes into the general district budget. One of the schools we have used falls into this category. From my perspective it is a win/win scenario, overall educational funding here is shameful and I'm more than happy for them to get credit for my student if that helps provide higher teacher salaries and better opportunities for all the students in the district.

2) Charter schools started by homeschooling parents looking for better opportunities for their kids; we have also participated in one of these schools, I was close enough to know a lot of what went into getting it started and the motivations of the people behind it.

3) Charter schools started and run by companies for whom this is just another business. K12 charters fall into this category, as do several of the charters in California that have recently been in trouble for misuse of funds.

The latter two categories are mirrored in the brick and mortar charter school movement as well.

I hope your perspective is validated long-term.  

I do think colleges and hoops for admission might end up being the backdoor gate keeper for the academic slack. I am thankful for not having had to morph my homeschool to fit some mold for college admissions. I do wonder if in 10 yrs or so colleges will require something yet to be determined from non-traditional applicants which will by default dictate more of what needs to be done at home. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

I hope your perspective is validated long-term.  

I do think colleges and hoops for admission might end up being the backdoor gate keeper for the academic slack. I am thankful for not having had to morph my homeschool to fit some mold for college admissions. I do wonder if in 10 yrs or so colleges will require something yet to be determined from non-traditional applicants which will by default dictate more of what needs to be done at home. 

Ah but what’s happening in ps and homeschool curriculum is happening -or will be— in colleges as well. 

I could quote the whole thing it’s worth the read. This is an article from the HBS professor who brought us the term disruption in the marketplace.
I think we are seeing disruption in homeschooling marketplace and not just a shift in values of new homeschoolers. We are in the midst of redefining what education is, how it is used, and how it can be achieved and it is going to be messy for awhile. 

——————
More recently, Christensen has predicted traditional colleges and universities are ripe for disruption, arguing online education will undermine their business models(because education is, ultimately, a business) to such a degree that many won't survive.

Technology is the tool -- not the end result.

Which is exactly what he feels is occurring in higher education. As online and "hybrid" learning continue to grow -- and as the cost of a traditional education continues to increase -- many institutions will struggle to stay in business under their current model. 

“Imagine if Amazon entered the higher-education marketplace
Amazon has almost unprecedented technology infrastructure and know-how. Amazon understands its customers' behavior to an incredible degree. 

Compare Amazon's ability to deliver what you want, how you want it, and when you want it, with that of the average college or university. Or even with the growing number of online universities and hybrid universities, and especially with the "traditional" institutions that offer online learning options.

Amazon would crush those folks.”

—————

https://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/a-harvard-professor-says-half-of-all-colleges-wont-exist-in-10-years-and-why-a-new-model-might-provide-a-better-path-to-career-success.html?cid=sf01002&fbclid=IwAR2Kj4T2NpC7dInmUOfiwLU23Wyc3wc-zhdv8xAc_mM-gJNEP_YnNrOoifk

Edited by Plum
Added more to the quote for context
  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
44 minutes ago, Plum said:

Ah but what’s happening in ps and homeschool curriculum is happening -or will be— in colleges as well. 

I could quote the whole thing it’s worth the read. This is an article from the HBS professor who brought us the term disruption in the marketplace.
I think we are seeing disruption in homeschooling marketplace and not just a shift in values of new homeschoolers. We are in the midst of redefining what education is, how it is used, and how it can be achieved and it is going to be messy for awhile. 

——————
More recently, Christensen has predicted traditional colleges and universities are ripe for disruption, arguing online education will undermine their business models(because education is, ultimately, a business) to such a degree that many won't survive.

Technology is the tool -- not the end result.

Which is exactly what he feels is occurring in higher education. As online and "hybrid" learning continue to grow -- and as the cost of a traditional education continues to increase -- many institutions will struggle to stay in business under their current model. 

“Imagine if Amazon entered the higher-education marketplace
Amazon has almost unprecedented technology infrastructure and know-how. Amazon understands its customers' behavior to an incredible degree. 

Compare Amazon's ability to deliver what you want, how you want it, and when you want it, with that of the average college or university. Or even with the growing number of online universities and hybrid universities, and especially with the "traditional" institutions that offer online learning options.

Amazon would crush those folks.”

—————

https://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/a-harvard-professor-says-half-of-all-colleges-wont-exist-in-10-years-and-why-a-new-model-might-provide-a-better-path-to-career-success.html?cid=sf01002&fbclid=IwAR2Kj4T2NpC7dInmUOfiwLU23Wyc3wc-zhdv8xAc_mM-gJNEP_YnNrOoifk

Probably accurate but if a fast, non-human interaction Amazon education becomes the norm.......education, the manufacturing of trousered apes. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Sneezyone said:


It is what it is. The requirements for state testing of PS students are largely the result of uneven outcomes too, even as colleges know which schools routinely produce college/career ready students and which do not. It seems totally counterproductive to me to complain about the verification that necessarily comes with increased access if there’s no intent to restrict home education options to those who do it the ‘right’ way.

I agree.  That ship has already sailed.  Schools already produce wildly different results.  Unschoolers produce radically different results from other homeschoolers.  Most public schools allow online learning for some of the classes, which essentially means that a majority of public-schooled high schoolers will be be educated in one of more of these computer-driven classes anyway.  Many public schools even have a requirement for an online learning class.  That's the point of the standardized test.  And I would personally be more than happy to prove our science, because I don't want it to be assumed that we do is the same as what most homeschoolers do.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

I hope your perspective is validated long-term.  

I do think colleges and hoops for admission might end up being the backdoor gate keeper for the academic slack. I am thankful for not having had to morph my homeschool to fit some mold for college admissions. I do wonder if in 10 yrs or so colleges will require something yet to be determined from non-traditional applicants which will by default dictate more of what needs to be done at home. 

Colleges in my current state have never moved away from testing for homeschool validation; I am not aware of any that will even look at homeschool transcripts, only those from accredited sources.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Plum said:

Ah but what’s happening in ps and homeschool curriculum is happening -or will be— in colleges as well. 

I could quote the whole thing it’s worth the read. This is an article from the HBS professor who brought us the term disruption in the marketplace.
I think we are seeing disruption in homeschooling marketplace and not just a shift in values of new homeschoolers. We are in the midst of redefining what education is, how it is used, and how it can be achieved and it is going to be messy for awhile. 

——————
More recently, Christensen has predicted traditional colleges and universities are ripe for disruption, arguing online education will undermine their business models(because education is, ultimately, a business) to such a degree that many won't survive.

Technology is the tool -- not the end result.

Which is exactly what he feels is occurring in higher education. As online and "hybrid" learning continue to grow -- and as the cost of a traditional education continues to increase -- many institutions will struggle to stay in business under their current model. 

“Imagine if Amazon entered the higher-education marketplace
Amazon has almost unprecedented technology infrastructure and know-how. Amazon understands its customers' behavior to an incredible degree. 

Compare Amazon's ability to deliver what you want, how you want it, and when you want it, with that of the average college or university. Or even with the growing number of online universities and hybrid universities, and especially with the "traditional" institutions that offer online learning options.

Amazon would crush those folks.”

—————

https://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/a-harvard-professor-says-half-of-all-colleges-wont-exist-in-10-years-and-why-a-new-model-might-provide-a-better-path-to-career-success.html?cid=sf01002&fbclid=IwAR2Kj4T2NpC7dInmUOfiwLU23Wyc3wc-zhdv8xAc_mM-gJNEP_YnNrOoifk

I have a friend who works with Clayton Christensen.

I've read some of his stuff, it can be interesting. His background is business though and I absolutely think he is missing critical understanding of the role of human interactions in cognitive development and learning. Technology is great for some educational uses, but humans need other humans as well.

Edited by maize
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

Probably accurate but if a fast, non-human interaction Amazon education becomes the norm.......education, the manufacturing of trousered apes. 

Yeah I don’t think anyone wants Amazon to go into education. His example is more about higher education’s inability to become more nimble and being so slow to address the needs of students in the future. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Well that was weird.
I just logged into FB and this was the post from History At Our House with a link to an article about $100k tuition at U of Chicago. Disruption through technology is happening whether we like it or not. 

 
“History At Our House will help render academic history programs obsolete by starting to offer courses beyond  high school. Systematic historical cognition will be the theme.  I'll be working with my adult students soon as I develop the 4-Hour Historian series and the History 2.0 series that follows!”

 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Seconding the idea that the method and the financing are different issues and the old, well trod debate about independent vs. state funded home education is a distraction from the bigger issues being discussed.

4 hours ago, Plum said:

Ah but what’s happening in ps and homeschool curriculum is happening -or will be— in colleges as well. 

I could quote the whole thing it’s worth the read. This is an article from the HBS professor who brought us the term disruption in the marketplace.
I think we are seeing disruption in homeschooling marketplace and not just a shift in values of new homeschoolers. We are in the midst of redefining what education is, how it is used, and how it can be achieved and it is going to be messy for awhile. 

——————
More recently, Christensen has predicted traditional colleges and universities are ripe for disruption, arguing online education will undermine their business models(because education is, ultimately, a business) to such a degree that many won't survive.

Technology is the tool -- not the end result.

Which is exactly what he feels is occurring in higher education. As online and "hybrid" learning continue to grow -- and as the cost of a traditional education continues to increase -- many institutions will struggle to stay in business under their current model. 

“Imagine if Amazon entered the higher-education marketplace
Amazon has almost unprecedented technology infrastructure and know-how. Amazon understands its customers' behavior to an incredible degree. 

Compare Amazon's ability to deliver what you want, how you want it, and when you want it, with that of the average college or university. Or even with the growing number of online universities and hybrid universities, and especially with the "traditional" institutions that offer online learning options.

Amazon would crush those folks.”

—————

https://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/a-harvard-professor-says-half-of-all-colleges-wont-exist-in-10-years-and-why-a-new-model-might-provide-a-better-path-to-career-success.html?cid=sf01002&fbclid=IwAR2Kj4T2NpC7dInmUOfiwLU23Wyc3wc-zhdv8xAc_mM-gJNEP_YnNrOoifk

The disruption is happening to some extent and I think there are some ways that we're seeing it and may continue to... but I disagree that Amazon or any other tech giant is very successful at making it take a particular course. I mean, look at all of Bill Gates's various efforts in education. They simply have no yielded the results he anticipated or predicted. And I doubt that if Bezos suddenly dove deeply into education that Amazon could "win" it either. It's genuinely more complex than that. Amazon is successful because it can get people cheap stuff quickly. That's dramatically easier as a starting goal than getting a diverse body of Americans to learn a large body of knowledge at different academic levels and for different goals.

Sal Khan's book The One World Schoolhouse is really interesting because he is using tech models to think about education and I think that - while I don't always love Khan Academy - they are trying to do a thing that is more thoughtful at least than these lowest common denominator options that we're discussing. One of my takeaways from his book was really that he believed that the technology being used in a system like KA worked best because it implemented mastery based learning (something we're all about, right!?). But he also talks a lot about the need to couple it with a lot of enrichment and hands on projects and things like that. And that's the stuff that he's clearly a bit more at sea about - he talks about some summer programs that he was involved in at the time, IIRC. But my takeaway was that he was envisioning that the best use of something like KA would be in a classroom where the teacher could be ensuring that all students were having their need to learn skills like math to mastery without using things like tracking and then could have all students working on more creative implementation of those skills.

I think models like that - and I think that's how many of us are actually using technology to introduce and shore up skills - are going to potentially disrupt, but I don't see them displacing teachers or classrooms or human interaction - I just think they'll change the character and systems of that interaction. I can imagine that models like flipped classrooms and mastery based learning in a very diverse classroom and self-studying the basics through online modules before going into the field might all become models for the future that rely deeply on technology. But I don't think any successful model is going to isolate students.

Now, some people are saying, hey, that's how we use Monarch or T4L or whatever. The kids knock it out and then we do lots of enrichment and rabbit trails. Which is great. But that's not what I'm seeing sold - not by the companies themselves, not by the schools districts when they're footing the bill, and not by many of the parents who are actually using it. Not long ago, someone asked on a local group, saying their kid was super bored on Acelus. She especially wanted some creative writing. I was like, so here are some ways you could do more creative writing. The mom was like, I don't have time to piece things together. I was like, so then add an outside class and here's some ideas of where to look. The mom was like, I don't have money to add a class or really time to figure out a class. Someone else was like, we love T4L. I was like, well, at least it has a bit more writing than Acelus. I think they switched to that. Which, ugh. Sorry, but UGH. It was the most dispiriting conversation to witness. And that's what I feel like I'm seeing happen a lot. When that mom came to ask for help because one all in one lowest common denominator program was too easy, the only way she could imagine solving it was by switching to another such program. She did not have the time or resources to add anything on top of it. And nearly everyone else in that thread supported that. And I don't want to judgemental and that mom may have genuinely had a lot on her plate - too much to give more to this kid. And the kid may not have been able to go back to b&m school... maybe there was a safety or a health issue. I have no idea. But the thought that no one has anything more to give her and that a whole community felt that was okay... it's just sad to me.

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

Adding... a key technological difference I see between Khan Academy (and some others like it) and some of the other learning programs is that you don't get a grade in Khan. You get to level up and meet goals and there are gamification elements. But it's not like these other systems where you get two tries and then you get your final grade in the end. The end goal is to learn, not get a grade. And that's a pretty dramatic difference.

And I can't believe I'm defending Khan Academy like that... 

  • Like 9
Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, Farrar said:

Seconding the idea that the method and the financing are different issues and the old, well trod debate about independent vs. state funded home education is a distraction from the bigger issues being discussed.

The disruption is happening to some extent and I think there are some ways that we're seeing it and may continue to... but I disagree that Amazon or any other tech giant is very successful at making it take a particular course. I mean, look at all of Bill Gates's various efforts in education. They simply have no yielded the results he anticipated or predicted. And I doubt that if Bezos suddenly dove deeply into education that Amazon could "win" it either. It's genuinely more complex than that. Amazon is successful because it can get people cheap stuff quickly. That's dramatically easier as a starting goal than getting a diverse body of Americans to learn a large body of knowledge at different academic levels and for different goals.

Sal Khan's book The One World Schoolhouse is really interesting because he is using tech models to think about education and I think that - while I don't always love Khan Academy - they are trying to do a thing that is more thoughtful at least than these lowest common denominator options that we're discussing. One of my takeaways from his book was really that he believed that the technology being used in a system like KA worked best because it implemented mastery based learning (something we're all about, right!?). But he also talks a lot about the need to couple it with a lot of enrichment and hands on projects and things like that. And that's the stuff that he's clearly a bit more at sea about - he talks about some summer programs that he was involved in at the time, IIRC. But my takeaway was that he was envisioning that the best use of something like KA would be in a classroom where the teacher could be ensuring that all students were having their need to learn skills like math to mastery without using things like tracking and then could have all students working on more creative implementation of those skills.

I think models like that - and I think that's how many of us are actually using technology to introduce and shore up skills - are going to potentially disrupt, but I don't see them displacing teachers or classrooms or human interaction - I just think they'll change the character and systems of that interaction. I can imagine that models like flipped classrooms and mastery based learning in a very diverse classroom and self-studying the basics through online modules before going into the field might all become models for the future that rely deeply on technology. But I don't think any successful model is going to isolate students.

Now, some people are saying, hey, that's how we use Monarch or T4L or whatever. The kids knock it out and then we do lots of enrichment and rabbit trails. Which is great. But that's not what I'm seeing sold - not by the companies themselves, not by the schools districts when they're footing the bill, and not by many of the parents who are actually using it. Not long ago, someone asked on a local group, saying their kid was super bored on Acelus. She especially wanted some creative writing. I was like, so here are some ways you could do more creative writing. The mom was like, I don't have time to piece things together. I was like, so then add an outside class and here's some ideas of where to look. The mom was like, I don't have money to add a class or really time to figure out a class. Someone else was like, we love T4L. I was like, well, at least it has a bit more writing than Acelus. I think they switched to that. Which, ugh. Sorry, but UGH. It was the most dispiriting conversation to witness. And that's what I feel like I'm seeing happen a lot. When that mom came to ask for help because one all in one lowest common denominator program was too easy, the only way she could imagine solving it was by switching to another such program. She did not have the time or resources to add anything on top of it. And nearly everyone else in that thread supported that. And I don't want to judgemental and that mom may have genuinely had a lot on her plate - too much to give more to this kid. And the kid may not have been able to go back to b&m school... maybe there was a safety or a health issue. I have no idea. But the thought that no one has anything more to give her and that a whole community felt that was okay... it's just sad to me.

Recently I read about a trend in healthcare, where people enrolled in Medicaid plans had access to some kind of AI. I'm not techie enough to explain it well. Basically a lonely person who was homebound establishes a relationship with this AI 'entity' who is monitoring the person at the same time, looking for potential expensive medical conditions. It was contrasted with someone who had enough means to have access to a live person. 

It made me think of the trends we see in education. People with means are choosing options for their children where there is human interaction and disadvantaged children are stuck with technological replacements instead of human interaction. 

I see the discussion of K12 and other similar programs on the local FB group and it does not seem like these are parents with means. Perhaps I'm wrong about that but it does seem that way. 

My local HS FB group thinks K12 is just fine but my neighborhood FB group thinks the local public school with 30 kids in kindergarten is just fine too. All of us have been sold a bill of goods - that we don't need to invest in education. That our kids can get a great education on the cheap. And I can't help but think that HSing fits into that narrative. HSing is 'cheap' because the work of SATM is never valued. The idea that an untrained mother is able to teach is a kind of vindication of the attack on public education. 

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/1/2019 at 8:45 PM, Lang Syne Boardie said:

 

We tried a lot of things as we found our groove, too. The main thing was always the 3Rs plus a lot of reading. If you could manage that, you had time to figure out the rest, in the early elementary years. In my opinion, that is STILL true, no matter how complicated public school curriculum has become. (It's complicated because it's developmentally inappropriate.)

Your last sentence is so, so true. I’m adding to it my personal quote collection. Love it.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Heathermomster said:

The charter school/voucher receiving type families and independent homeschoolers are not the same, and you are using the names interchangeably as if they are.  Charter school/voucher families are subject to governmental regulation and oversight.  Homeschoolers who receive no monies from the state or use charters are concerned about a regulated aka charter school/voucher version of homeschooling becoming the norm.

I was an independent homeschooler and was not and am not concerned about charter school/voucher receiving type homeschooling families or abut government regulated homeschooling becoming the norm. Personally, I don’t think it’s right for me to want choice in how I educate my child, but advocate for any removal of the rights of other parents, just because they are doing it differently. I want true school choice for all, even if I sometimes disagree with the methods or choices of others.

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites

Having used k12 in the past, I don’t see it in the same light as this new “Calvert”. k12 has or had both online and offline teaching bits for the child and parent/teacher. I still had interaction daily. I still did the bulk of the teaching. Now it has changed, too so I can’t say. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I haven't personally encountered a lot of the "just put them in front of x computer program" attitude.

I do understand all too well though not having the time and energy for lots of actual hands on teaching. I did way more of that when my older children were young, but as the needs of my family and the complexities of life have increased there has been less and less time. I have too much on my shoulders to do any of it really well, and I feel like the best I can do is try to be strategic about which balls to drop.

I have prioritized physical and mental health and social development because for my family those things seem to be hardest to achieve and most critical. I have made use of every tool I have access to, including part or full time enrollment in brick and mortar school, virtual schools that give me access to more extracurricular activities, independent homeschooling when we needed space to just do our own thing without worrying about accountability to someone else, get-it-done computer programs...

My experience has been that living in a state with lots of flexibility when it comes to education I have needed all of that flexibility. In fact I have come to call what I do flex-schooling, defined as using whatever resources are available to meet the individual needs of each child. 

In general, I feel like the more options there are the better chance I have of meeting the actual needs of individual children. Not even of meeting them perfectly, but acceptably.

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Frances said:

I was an independent homeschooler and was not and am not concerned about charter school/voucher receiving type homeschooling families or abut government regulated homeschooling becoming the norm. Personally, I don’t think it’s right for me to want choice in how I educate my child, but advocate for any removal of the rights of other parents, just because they are doing it differently. I want true school choice for all, even if I sometimes disagree with the methods or choices of others.

I agree completely with the bolded. I just re-read this thread and realized how my responses read from a screen vs my actual thoughts. This weekend we traveled for a "Celebration of Life' memorial for my favorite aunt whom I dearly loved and who committed suicide, so my posting was probably not a good idea. In my mind I was just having a conversation, but I see my posts don't read that way.

I want parents to have the freedom to make decisions on how to educate their children, whatever that option is. Charter schools, virtual, online, enrollment, or completely at home.  After rereading the thread, I don't remember who said it, but I think the idea that the growth has surpassed terminology is probably key.

Definitions often come after the fact in order to clarify what is being discussed. It is the classifying of all non-b&m students under a single umbrella term, home-educating, that leads to confusion, especially for people who are outside of any non-traditional educational framework. Non-traditional is probably a more accurate term and the one college admissions offices use for non-b&m applicants. With such wide legal variants due to different state laws, it makes discussion even more convoluted without accurate descriptors.  (What maize describes is not a legal option anywhere I have lived.)  

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
  • Like 4
  • Thanks 2
  • Sad 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, maize said:

I dislike standardized testing being tied to allowing a family to homeschool--tying educational options to a percentile score is ridiculous, someone will always be in those lower percentiles regardless of educational setting.

My state doesn't require any kind of testing or reporting. Doesn't even require particular subjects to be taught.

I'm not entirely sure what the best way to address cases of actual serious neglect is, but I don't think standardized testing is a good answer.

Count yourself very blessed to have so much freedom in your homeschooling! Some of us do not have such leeway. My state requires standardized testing at least every other school year to prove a year's worth of progress in learning. Though I do not care for this testing, I understand their reasoning and I am grateful to be able to choose which test we use and have the ability to administer it outside of the public school. I can choose our curriculum and know that it supports our personal and/or religious beliefs. We do not get any financial help (vouchers, tax credit, or otherwise) to support our homeschooling and the state will not even issue a high school diploma to homeschooled children. Yet.

All that said, I am compelled to say that I appreciate the state's diligence in making sure homeschooled children's education isn't being neglected. I have seen some who unknowingly aren't teaching their children to the basic standards but wouldn't realize it without those required tests to help them make the necessary adjustments.

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Servant4Christ said:

Count yourself very blessed to have so much freedom in your homeschooling! Some of us do not have such leeway. My state requires standardized testing at least every other school year to prove a year's worth of progress in learning. Though I do not care for this testing, I understand their reasoning and I am grateful to be able to choose which test we use and have the ability to administer it outside of the public school. I can choose our curriculum and know that it supports our personal and/or religious beliefs. We do not get any financial help (vouchers, tax credit, or otherwise) to support our homeschooling and the state will not even issue a high school diploma to homeschooled children. Yet.

All that said, I am compelled to say that I appreciate the state's diligence in making sure homeschooled children's education isn't being neglected. I have seen some who unknowingly aren't teaching their children to the basic standards but wouldn't realize it without those required tests to help them make the necessary adjustments.

 

Not teaching at all is a problem.

Not teaching particular standards? I don't know. I went through too many different education systems myself as a child to feel like there is one necessary set of standards.

Standardized tests measure test taking ability more than anything else in my experience. I don't think they are totally worthless and I do sometimes have my kids take them but they don'necessarily mean what people take them to mean. A dyslexic child might be receiving diligent instruction and still do poorly on a standardized test, same for a child with test anxiety or ADHD or any other number of issues. By contrast, a high IQ child with good test taking ability might ace the test in spite of not receiving much instruction.

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Frances said:

I was an independent homeschooler and was not and am not concerned about charter school/voucher receiving type homeschooling families or abut government regulated homeschooling becoming the norm. Personally, I don’t think it’s right for me to want choice in how I educate my child, but advocate for any removal of the rights of other parents, just because they are doing it differently. I want true school choice for all, even if I sometimes disagree with the methods or choices of others.

Ideally, I agree with this.
Realistically, it’s difficult seeing people make the cheap and easy choice because they don’t have the time or resources to research on their own. I wish there were a free and easy way for people to get education counseling to find the best fit for their kids and family. So many programs sell themselves as something they aren’t or people don’t see that they may not be complete (Costco workbooks anyone?) and their kids end up with gaping holes in their education. Its a bit sad and frustrating to know there are so many deep and rich options out there that aren’t getting the attention they deserve because it takes too much time to wade through the piles of available options. 
We also need a place that clarifies the differences between the education options and explains why those differences are important without judgement or accusation. 
 

Edited by Plum
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, maize said:

 

Not teaching at all is a problem.

Not teaching particular standards? I don't know. I went through too many different education systems myself as a child to feel like there is one necessary set of standards.

Standardized tests measure test taking ability more than anything else in my experience. I don't think they are totally worthless and I do sometimes have my kids take them but they don'necessarily mean what people take them to mean. A dyslexic child might be receiving diligent instruction and still do poorly on a standardized test, same for a child with test anxiety or ADHD or any other number of issues. By contrast, a high IQ child with good test taking ability might ace the test in spite of not receiving much instruction.

I agree wholeheartedly. DH and I view the results through a different lense than the school system, I'm sure. We use the required testing to help our children understand test taking procedures in general in case they choose to pursue further education beyond homeschool. We view the results as a gauge to see if our children are retaining what's been taught and their ability to apply that knowledge. We always applaud giving their best effort over the actual grade. If a low score happens to show up, it's always been because it's something we haven't taught yet and has never been something that was taught and not retained/applied. Testing for us really is encouraging for the whole family to see the results of our efforts throughout the school year. Our school district has lots of support for children (even homeschooled children) with learning challenges and disabilities but thankfully we've never needed them. I have friends who do, though.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

I agree completely with the bolded. I just re-read this thread and realized how my responses read from a screen vs my actual thoughts. This weekend we traveled for a "Celebration of Life' memorial for my favorite aunt whom I dearly loved and who committed suicide, so my posting was probably not a good idea. In my mind I was just having a conversation, but I see my posts don't read that way.

 

 

Oh 8, I am so, so sorry to hear about your aunt. Suicide is such a difficult way to lose someone 😞

  • Like 3
  • Sad 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Plum said:

Ideally, I agree with this.
Realistically, it’s difficult seeing people make the cheap and easy choice because they don’t have the time or resources to research on their own. I wish there were a free and easy way for people to get education counseling to find the best fit for their kids and family. So many programs sell themselves as something they aren’t or people don’t see that they may not be complete (Costco workbooks anyone?) and their kids end up with gaping holes in their education. Its a bit sad and frustrating to know there are so many deep and rich options out there that aren’t getting the attention they deserve because it takes too much time to wade through the piles of available options. 
We also need a place that clarifies the differences between the education options and explains why those differences are important without judgement or accusation. 
 

But I think some people want the easy way even if they have more info. Twenty years ago when I first started homeschooling, I met a very energetic mother of eight who was very proud of the fact she had devised such a simple method for homeschooling. Each child did one page in each of their workbooks (Costco type for the younger kids) each school day. That was it. She thought it was wonderful and something everyone would appreciate the beauty and simplicity of if only they would try it.

  • Confused 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...