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Utah Yearbook: Special Edition


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Pong is his last name. His first name is actually Dammit.

Because a good teacher can provide better and more varied opportunities for that student to learn.   A student who is below grade-level finishes her book report. She does a so-so job, completes all th

A real simple solution would have been on picture day and having an administrator tell each student in "dress code" violation too call home and change cloths and comeback and get your picture taken. T

Home Schooling can be fine, I think it depends on the parent.

 

My oldest sister home schools her kids and they are informed, quick witted, artistic and by all accounts good problem solvers. Her oldest is a talented artist (comic book style) and a Marine, her second oldest is entering her college days and is a talented photographer. Rounding out the trio of older kids (she has more younger ones) is another daughter at high school age and seems quite gifted in the culinary arts.

 

Side: DFYS would probably care about that dress code, Cerina. lol

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Oh absolutely. I've been doing a lot of research lately on education options for my son and his special needs. Home schooling is easily winning as the best option available to us. But oh how I would love for you to tell me why it isn't.

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Well if your son has special needs, then homeschooling may very well be a good option. I have very little knowledge of special needs education and I have no idea what ailments he has, and whether or not homeschooling is effective in that regard. So you may be an exception. I dunno.

 

But I will say for a vast majority of children, homeschooling is a terrible idea. I'm not going to make a statistical argument, because I have noticed the studies on this are almost uniformly awful. The problem is the issue is so political and everyone has skin in the game- a lot of the research on the topic is either done by the national teachers' union, which obviously has a vested interest in publishing research criticizing the practice, and then you have legal defense groups that defend homeschooling, and gee, same thing. But having read much of the research before, I can say that anyone with statistical training, or just basic logic, can notice multiple problems pretty readily. Like, for example, one thing pro-homeschooling folks love doing is trying to quote standardized test statistics, because it gives the impression that they are being objective. However, they often make unfair comparisons, like for example, comparing homeschooled students with a national average, which obviously includes your idiots, your failing inner city schools and so on. It's an apples to oranges thing. I'd love to see a pro-homeschooling study compare the practice to say, graduates of Stuyvesant, you know, the school that produced 4 Nobel prize winners and 22 Intel Science Talent Search finalists. Something tells me that ain't happening anytime soon.

 

So for those reasons I'm not going to make a statistical argument. My reason is rather, much more simple. Putting a kid through homeschooling is marking the kid with a scarlet letter- it's like intentionally giving the kid an immediate disability just to satisfy selfish desires. It's sorta like when a hippie couple names their kid "Rainbow" or something.. I mean, just to satisfy their own childish amusement and because they think it's funny, they are essentially condemning a kid to immediate ridicule for their entire childhood, something the kid has to suffer and just bear, day after day, until they are finally of age and can go file a name change petition in court, get rid of that despicable nonsense and get a normal name that isn't met with chuckles by every single person they ever meet. I will say this, whether one likes it or not, the harsh reality of life is that when people meet homeschooled children, they make an immediate judgment that their parents are either a) poor, or b) jesus freaks, or usually c) both. I mean, there are very few things that more immediately mark a kid as from a poor class upbringing than homeschooling. It's just a little token of embarrassment that a child has to reluctantly admit every time they meet someone, something that becomes part of a initial impression, and no matter how small it is, it subconsciously forms a part of every first impression of every person they meet and plants the seed for a persona that the homeschooled kid will never be able to break. So that, in college, some time you'll have two people talking behind the back of homeschooled Jimmy or whatever, after Jimmy does something silly, then it's all- "hey, look at jimmy doing XYZ. It's probably because he homeschooled.. har har har." And then there ya go, Jimmy's person is set for his peers, and he won't get a chance to reinvent himself until 4 years later when he leaves college.

 

Not to mention you have your questions about how a kid is properly socialized in a homeschooled environment, but that's another post and I'm getting tired of typing. I mean, I just can't ever imagine doing something to my kid like homeschooling. I mean, I think I would make decisions based on what I think the kid would need, not what I just want, because it's the kid that has to live with it forever. So, I plan on raising someone to have the most normal freaking childhood possible. So I'm not going to name a kid "Rainbow," I'm going to name it something f-cking normal, like Catherine or Paul. And no, I'm not going to homsechool the kid. The kid will go to a normal freaking school so they can be around normal people and they don't have to go their entire childhood feeling like they're different.

 

I mean, there's a reason why certain countries like Germany have banned the practice. It's worth noting, of course, that Germany has one of the best educational systems in the world.

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Guest El Chalupacabra

I have to agree somewhat with CM, but also with Cerina to a point, too.

 

Homeschooling can and does have success stories. I personally met a student from a few years back, who at the age of 18, finished her BS in Nursing, and 2 years ago finished pre-med at the age of 20. What happened after that, I don’t know, because I lost contact. She was homeschooled by both parents, who both happened to be teachers.

 

But I think the main issue with home schooling is inconsistency in education. Not every kid is going to have a story like that. Also, my brother is a school teacher, and has several other friends who are school teachers. Every one of them says a lot of home schooled kids they run across often are no better off than public schooled kids educationally, sometimes worse off, and many of them have issues with adjusting to classrooms with other kids, socialization, and some cases, they have too high a self-esteem.

 

Basically, it can be successful, but is only as good as the parent or tutor.

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I'll agree about the statistical argument. I've searched the internet looking for research done by an unbiased party, but haven't been able to find anything. I do, however, know quite a few people who were home schooled or who home school their children, and I can say for certain that home schooling absolutely is not for "poor" people. Just think, the family will have to survive on one income while the other parent stays home, and many states do not offer any financial assistance to home schooled families so they have to provide their own curriculum, materials, and pay for their own field trips (which are a major part of home school education). It may be the stereotype, but it's a very illogical one.

 

On one hand, you're probably right. Being home schooled will probably paint a target on his back, but so will damn near everything else. Kids are cruel, and people in general just love making fun of someone different. Essentially you could almost make the same argument for anybody born black, Hispanic, female, etc. But unlike being born into a negative stereotype, home schooled kids aren't walking around with their home schoolness painted on their faces or anything. Honestly, when have you ever been questioned about your school (not college) as an adult? When do you ever even mention it? It's not even on any job applications.

 

But now I'm wondering exactly what peers you're thinking are going to be making fun of a kid for this? He's not going to be in a school environment. Most home schooled kids are in co-ops with other home schooled kids, but are they going to make fun a kid for being just like them? (Probably actually, God kids are horrible.) So then where? At the mall? Grocery store? How would they know? Or are you talking about from his little league teammates or the other kids at church or the other kids at swim lessons or maybe kids from some other extra-curricular activities/lessons? If so...I'm thinking that pretty much explains where this "socialization" is going to come from.

 

A lot of people fall into the trap of thinking that the only way someone can be socialized is in a classroom. But in a classroom kids are forced to be corralled into a room with 25-30 other kids the exact same age with nearly the exact same socio-economical background for 8 hours a day where they're told (repeatedly, in my case) NOT to socialize with each other outside of the designated 30 minutes or so they get for recess. That's not real socializing. People are socialized by being in out and about and interacting with people of all backgrounds.

 

I don't think home schooling needs to be the education of choice for everybody, but it's a perfectly viable option for many. Of course, like anything, it's going to depend on the parents as well and how much legitimate effort is put into it.

 

What I like about home school as an option is that I'm not going to be fighting with teachers, counselors, administrators, and whoever to ensure that my kid's needs are being met sufficiently, and I can keep him doing work on his level without the ridicule of other children who don't understand his learning differences (what? less ridicule by not being in public school? weird). Plus, now we get to fill all the time he would be wasting in a classroom doing nothing with actually doing something productive. (I say "we", but I mean the kid and my husband. I'm totally not doing this myself.)

 

Our public education system is setup to cater to typical children with typical learning abilities and rates. It's not a bad option for everyone. I'm sure a lot of kids get a lot out of being in that environment, but not all. The system just isn't capable of handing the individual needs of everyone that comes through there.

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I think the general negative opinion on home schooling has more to do with lazy "dumb" parents, religious or otherwise "hip", that don't themselves have the ability to teach even at the elementary level let alone above.

 

To say you need to be an Astrophysicist to home school is ridiculous on a level I thoroughly appreciate, but ridiculous never the less.

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The biggest problems with home schooling:

-It's slowly becoming more mainstream, but it's mainly weirdos who do it. Weirdos have weird kids, so home schooling gets blamed, but I think it's more just the parents.

 

-Parents think that just because they want to teach, they should. Teaching is hard. Not everyone can do it, and not everyone should. All of the people I've seen survive home schooling and come out not acting like Milton from Office Space were taught by a mother who had a background as a teacher.

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Oh man, not to derail more or anything, but I'd say some 60-80% of teachers in public schools shouldn't be teaching either. I already pretty much held this belief after attending public school, but watching my husband get a teaching degree and hearing stories about the other students in his class...I don't even have the words to express how much it frightens me. I have, I think, maybe 5-6 teachers in my Facebook friends, and there are only 2 I would want teaching my child.

 

And your "weirdo" assumption is wrong and offensive.

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It isn't an assumption, and it isn't wrong. Between working for a public library and two churches, I've known dozens of home schooling families and can count on one hand how many aren't borderline cult members. Now, most of that group comes from more recent exposure, hence my comment that it's becoming more mainstream.

 

And I also live in Ohio, which has a an incredibly difficult market for teaching positions. Out of my wife's education classes, maybe 10% actually were able to get jobs as teachers, and I work with several failed teachers.

 

And as for the "poor" title -- Carrie means anyone with less than seven figures in investment accounts.

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That's a relatively narrow sample you've obtained. Home school families from churches are probably much more likely to be "cult like". I'm not going to compare sample pool sizes with you here, but I've met many home schooling families in the past year or so since I started considering it as an option for Noah and very few have been "weirdos". But again, most of my sample pool have come from forums and meetups for parents of gifted and other special needs children. So my experience is probably just as narrow.

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And your sample also addresses exactly what I was saying: it's becoming more mainstream, so it's not just the weirdos now. But they weirdos gave it a negative connotation.

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To show you my vested interest in this-- I am reading Carrie's posts and skipping Cerina's. Mostly because I have a short attention span that has already been spent. But on topic, there's a girl on my roster named "Raynebowe." We've got some other great ones too, like "Quadnishia" and "Quantelle." I came across an older, terminated employee who took the cake though-- it was something like "Mushroom Cloud" or "Nuclear Blast" or something to that effect. I laughed for what seemed an hour when I came across that. I don't remember the exact name because it's been many months and I'm too lazy to run a query just to find that name.

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Reese, here's your problem. It sounds like you want "schooling" to be about education and fun and optimizing the development of your child. Horse shit. That's not what school is for. It's indoctrination into being a cog in the economy. Think about it. You're corralled into a group of demographically diverse people and told to do things. Teacher asks you a question, you respond. If you get it wrong, you get marked down. Just like work. Your boss asks you a question/tells you to do something, if you come up with the wrong answer too many times, you're out of a job.

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