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View Diary: Growing concern about safety of homeschooled kids in North Carolina (121 comments)

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  •  Our neighbors are homeschoolers... (0+ / 0-)

    Actually, I've known 10 - 20 families that used homeschooling for all or at least part of their children's' education. Two families had family members that worked on my staff. They all seemed to be very successful efforts.

    In our neighbor's case, we have known them for over 20 years. Our children grew up together. The mom has a masters in chemistry and they home school for religious reasons, I believe - they are much more conservative than we are. Most of their children were schooled at home until eighth grade and then went on to an excellent Christian school. They actually home-birthed several of their children, also. At home, they were taught both intelligent design and evolution theories. I think that is the same at their high school. They know to always answer "evolutionarily" on the standardized tests they take. I believe they are all well-adjusted and will make good future adult citizens. One is already a successful ballerina who has danced with several large troupes.

    As to the background check, testing, break in routine issues raised here...

    I don't think background checks are at all necessary. If you are going to do checks for homeschooling, then there are many more areas where checks could be done that would most likely be more successful in preventing abuse of children, but would raise howls here.

    Several commentors were totally against testing because taking them out of their home environment would raise havoc with their schedule or traumatize their children. I think this goes to the heart of one of the big problems of homeschooling - socialization and independence. If your child can't tolerate a testing situation away from home for even once a year, then how will they ever survive after they are 18 (unless it is a situation where they will have to remain at home or in a monitored environment because of their disability - if that is the case, then I apologize for the criticism). For the people that I know, all were very cognizant of the socialization and independence issues and worked very hard to ensure that even though they were using a homeschooling model, they worked very hard to incorporate socialization opportunities into their model.

    I would see no problem at all (and believe it would be quite beneficial) for all homeschooled children to meet with a certified teacher and take an appropriate level achievement test once a year. If there is concern about state meddling, then a good model might be that the test results are only reported to the parents as a guide on how their children are progressing in comparison with the rest of the children in their state. If the scores fall below a certain threshold, then they could be reviewed by the state to see if assistance could be offered or to catch other potential problems - abuse could certainly be one of those problems.

    In the end, the state does have some interest in the results of home schooling because the rest of the taxpayers will be on the hook to pick up the pieces for failures. However, before the fact state interference isn't warranted - any more so than it would be to check the home situations of single mother or low income homes.

    •  My son is the one you're talking about I think. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nance, kkkkate

      He's autistic, and was severely traumatized by the public school system while he was in it. When he was in public school and taking the FCAT it disrupted his schooling for 2 months. He did nothing but have melt downs over and over and over for two months between leading up to the test, taking it, and trying to get him back into a regular routine again after. And still he somehow managed to always 'pass' the test, even though what they were teaching him in class was not up to grade level. So how honest that school was with their tests I also question.

      Why would I put him through that again? I don't feel that ANY elementary kid should have to go through the stress of high stakes testing, not when it's pushed at them the way the teachers down here do. I know few adults who handle stress well, and stressing our kids out to that point doesn't do anything to help them. But for my kids, it definitely did more harm than good. And just because I don't teach the exact curriculum of the public school doesn't mean his education is bad. We spent an entire year studying the civil war in depth for example. We also spent a year and a half studying college level biology. But he's only getting to Geometry in his senior year because we had to play catch up from the public school that didn't teach him up to grade level in math, and because we took a year to cover personal finance because we felt that was more important than being able to get to Trig.

      "Madness! Total and complete madness! This never would've happened if the humans hadn't started fighting one another!" Londo Mollari

      by FloridaSNMOM on Mon Nov 25, 2013 at 09:39:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I disagree with yearly testing. I hate it in the (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FloridaSNMOM, Nance, kkkkate

      public school system.

       You have no idea how many students I have seen break out in hives or cry at the mention of that state's yearly standardized test (I have taught in multiple states).  To insist that home school  be brought in as if they must be under a microscope and tested on a test that the student has not been "prepared" for in the way a public school student has to be made "ready" to take, is not only cruel but would not assess anything properly.

       Public school students are drilled for the test daily, and taught to the test daily and made to learn for the test constantly.  They are taught how to take the test, what prompts might be included, and what will be looked for as far as the scoring is concerned.  

      Other subjects such as history, social studies, community,  the arts, music, or anything beyond whatever that test will cover etc are all put to the sidelines so the test can be passed on the level that school needs for their "numbers".  I guarantee that if you took any one of public school students and did not teach to the test in the way it is currently done, and then had them take the test without preparation...you would find out quickly how "preparation" (and I don't mean actual knowledge gained) makes for the proper numbers a school wants to see.

      To promote it as worthy of making a valid call of other students or even how well a students is learning is nonsense.  It should be banned for everyone as it is.

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