Home Screw-ling

I can only hope I won’t piss off Mrs. Blue with this post, because she has several home schooling friends in real life and online (and even some that practice unschooling). Have no idea how Miz Pink feels about the practice, but I suspect she’s at least modestly sympathetic to it.

So, going to gird up my loins here and just say it:

I suspect that most people who home school their kids don’t have a clue, and they are not qualified to prepare their kids for the real world. I mean, I think I’m pretty smart and I wouldn’t even attempt to do this.

As messed up as many public schools are, the fact is that the teachers of the various subjects know way more about them than the vast majority of us do. Oh, we might know a couple subjects as well as or even better than a given teacher, but overall, we as parents lack knowledge in several areas, and perhaps most of them.

I don’t care what curriculum stuff you get in the mail to be ready for home schooling. The fact is that most people who do it are out of their league and are selling their kids short.

OK, now that I’ve made my blanket statements, the caveats:

  • There are some people who simply want to home school their kids for the early years of schooling. They aren’t the object of my ire because they plan to introduce their kids to the real world eventually.
  • Some home schooling parents actually network together in an organized fashion to make sure they have the necessary skills between the lot of them to teach their kids right, and they may even put their kids into real schools for one or two subjects they can’t handle. They are also not objects of my ire, because they are doing something that is very school-like and provides their kids with well-rounded curricula and the ability to interact with other kids socially.
  • Some people are just mad freaking geniuses or have genius kids who don’t like to be around other kids their own age anyway, and I can’t really take issue with that.

But, you see, it is my general observation that that most parents who are way into home schooling and unschooling aren’t just pissed at the existing school system. They are afraid to let their children out of their sight and fearful of exposing them to the harsh world out there.

How are they going to learn to function in a world like ours under such circumstances? The answer is that they can’t, generally speaking. Most parents who home school their kids over the long run are trying to shelter them from the real world, at least from my observations. And that’s not good.

The socially conscious progressive parents who do this are often fearful of things like bullying or peer pressure. Things that a kid needs to learn to deal with on some level before they get a bullying boss or demanding and controlling life partner.

But they aren’t the ones who really, really, truly piss me off. The ones who piss me off the most are my fellow Christians who do this. Those people who are so afraid that the evils of the world will corrupt their children and fill their heads with unholy garbage that they keep them at home.

First, this irritates me because if you are doing your job right as spiritual guides, your kids will probably be fine. But there’s probably a good chance if you’re in this camp that instead of raising your kids to respect their religion, you are instead forcing it on them and demanding them to hold precisely to your view of it, no questions asked. Which is begging for your kids to piss off adults later in life or to reject your religion entirely.

Second, how are these kids going to be ambassadors for Christ and help spread the Gospel if they have really only been around you the Christian parents and like-minded people? If they don’t have any context for the environment in which most other people live, they will be ineffective in reaching others for Jesus.

4 Responses to “Home Screw-ling”

  1. January 24, 2009 at 11:13 am

    I agree with you. I think there are social skills and coping skills a child needs to learn early so thatthey can mature properly as adults.

    I have a friend who has a conservative sis-in-law who home schools and the kids are friggin’ brilliant, tho. I think the one-on-one attention helps any child learn better and I wish we cd fix schools so that the student teacher ratio is better.

    I wonder how this generation of home schooled kids whose parents h.s’s them because of “values” issues will be? Are they gonna be the next generation of Liberty University grads? Or are they gonna act like the Amish during rumspringa?

  2. 2 Deacon Blue
    January 24, 2009 at 3:42 pm

    You’re spot-on with the attention factor. I think that if more parents were willing to give their attention to their kids (home schoolers or not), we’d have a lot better-adjusted, emotional strong, and smart kids.

    My biggest concern is that too many of these parents, both on the secular end and the religious end, see no problem with their kids being shut away from most of the outside world. The more granola/crunchy folks assume that their kids will be able to grow up an live with artistic or cottage-style careers (which means they’ve already vastly limited their career choices) and the more conservative die-hard homeschoolers I think are often content with the idea that they don’t care if their kids are very educated, as long as their religious and moral values remain untainted by exposure to mainstream kids. Nothing wrong with kids not necessarily going on to college…but I think we’d benefit as a society by having more blue collar and working class folks who developed some thinking skills and gained some world knowledge as kids.

  3. 3 thewordofme
    January 24, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    Hi Deacon, I hope you are well.

    Regarding home schooling I think there’s going to be a new class of them coming out of Texas. Their state school-board has just voted (23rd.)to allow teaching of Creationism in public schools.

  4. 4 Deacon Blue
    January 25, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    Oh, well…there goes the state…

    Oh, wait, Texas has always marched to the beat of its own very oversized drummer…


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Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

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January 2009

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