We are seeing more evidence that the future of homeschooling in these Fifty States is one of massive expansion.
It is no surprise to those who are familiar with the concept and may nave even done homeschooling. It is, I believe, a combination of factors:
- The Pandemic Panic and Lockdown, closing virtually every public and private K-12 school in the Fifty States.
- The Twenty-dollar Rebellion after the murder of George Floyd, with the massive racial unrest and violence and destruction.
- The reaction of teachers’ unions nationwide, demanding continued Lockdown and more socialist demands.
- The growing evidence of the failure of public schools to educate, instead indoctrinating and propagandizing their students.
- Increasing attacks by school officials and teachers on fundamental social, economic, moral, and religious beliefs of students and parents.
- The growing violence and predation in schools, including the ban on police in many schools.
- The increasing cost of “incidentals” to a supposedly “tuition-free” education even while “public” (taxpayer) funding increases more and more.
Certainly the fears generated by government and media, and the draconian Lockdown measures, in response to the Pandemic are the major factor in this surge of getting the children out of the schools and into homeschooling.
This is, clearly, a good thing: the government-run, tax-supported (“public”) schools are a major problem with government, and help perpetuate government of ever-increasing power, control, and reach. These systems are also a major drain on the public purse, which ultimately is stolen from taxpayers. Too many of those in the school systems are parasites, pure and simple. As time has gone on, they have contributed less and less to both our economy and our society.
Two recent discussions point out the way in which, finally, very large numbers of people are rejecting the government-controlled “education” system.
This first one, by the very able Kerry McDonald, shows how several fictions about home-schooling are being addressed. NOT through government fiat, but by common sense and voluntary cooperation. Parents and Teachers Starting “Learning Pods” Are Done Waiting for Permission from Foundation for Economic Education by Kerry McDonald. Not only is this a way for parents (and grandparents and extended family) to provide good knowledge about a wide range of subjects, despite their own often-poor education – and deal with the necessity of two-wageearning parents. This is also a way that addresses the often-claimed “problem” with home-schooling: that children do not learn to socialize. McDonald writes in part:
“The widespread ‘pandemic pods’ that are emerging as back-to-school alternatives this fall are models of parental ingenuity, educator adaptability, and entrepreneurial agility. These learning pods, or in-home microschools, involve small groups of families coming together to take turns facilitating a curriculum for their children in their homes, or pooling resources to hire a teacher or college student to lead instruction. They are a creative, spontaneous response to uncertain or undesirable school reopening plans that make at-home learning easier, more practical, and more enjoyable for more families. These pods are also a prime example of what Adam Thierer calls ‘permissionless innovation,’ where new solutions and discoveries are born without explicit regulatory blessings.”
Then we have this very challenging article, Subsidiarity Must Become a Reality in Education, from Heartland Institute by Larry Sand. Sand makes some good points:
“Originating in the Catholic Church, subsidiarity is an organizing principle that stipulates ‘matters ought to be handled by the smallest, lowest or least centralized competent authority.’ And our times are most definitely screaming for this simple but powerful concept to be applied to schooling. A perfect example is here in California, where Governor Gavin Newsom, in conjunction with the California Teachers Association, has decided to halt in-person schooling for over 2.5 million kids and 250,000 educators all over the state. For many parents and teachers, that was a welcomed decision. But what about parents and teachers who want to return to a traditional school setting without navigating through an onerous state-directed waiver mechanism? There is nothing they can do; they are powerless. Why not leave the decision up to an individual school — its parents, teachers and administration?”
However, I suggest that Sands does not go far enough. The smallest, lowest, least centralized authority is indeed the oft-maligned “nuclear family.” That is, the parents. We know that there ARE perverts, sick “adults” (based on age and physical characteristics) who abuse, fail to provide for, and even kill their children. But these evil people are far less common that the media and gossip would make us think. And certainly a threat to children far more miniscule than the threats presented by the circumstances of “public” school: politicians, bureaucrats, staff, faculty, and even other students. Combined with the threat of abusive, unloving parents.
Much of the crisis facing the Fifty States (and much of the world today) can be blamed with much justification over the cesspools called “public schools” and those who have been allowed to run (and ruin) them for more than a century. This will come to an end; the only question is how and when.
More and more people – in particular parents – are starting to understand not just HOW to school their own children at home, but WHY it is important to do so. And thereby weakening the power of government over the new generations. And doing it sooner than later.