Friday, March 07, 2008

Closed Minds Make It Harder For Those That Aren't #2

Thanks for asking Jax.

Imagine me saying this! I wish we were as sensible about home education as England is. England’s home education language that a child must be educated at school or otherwise is exceptionally wise. When it works, it allows for diversity of educational theory; doesn’t lock parents into unattainable curricula and encourages the parent to focus on the child’s education rather than administrative hoop-jumping for the privilege of joyful sacrifice. (When it doesn’t work and the L.E.A. gets a jealous ferret up their judgemental arses - it can be bad. Luckily there are people out there to help.)

Because our founding fathers were concerned about State’s rights, we allow each state to put into law their own ideas about homeschooling. In relation to achieving a national standard, this is short-sighted, misguided and counterproductive to our collective national well being.

In my previous post, I was addressing both the family and the actual ruling. Perhaps I was confusing. (This is the problem with trying to post regularly. Snack-serving; boo-boo kissing and dog-toy throwing derail even the clearest thought train.)

In the case of the family, these are the real bad apples. The family was discovered after the children reported abuse. Many family agencies try to keep families together. The court appointed a barrister for the children. The issues were being discussed in a conference to discover how to achieve this goal. So, the barrister requested that the children attend public school so they'd have time away from the insane abusive mother. The parents brought the case to court because of the school issue. The children’s barrister appealed the original issue.

This family has put the homeschool community in a real bind. Whenever someone wants to bring homeschooling under scrutiny - they always point at some nutter who kills or abuses their children. The same issue is happening right now in Washington D.C.
The children in california won that case. So, good on them - they get what they want and need. However, when anything comes before a court of law, any decision will be taken into consideration in future courts. And that is why the homeschooling community is disturbed. My previous post quoted the actual ruling.

From what I’ve read, California’s laws are fairly tight. You have to register yourself as a school. This doesn’t mean parents have to be certified teachers. The judges ruling is so poorly done and is factually wrong regarding California law. Here’s an update on this situation be fair-minded people.

What upset me about this case is that a ruling can set a precedent. Under this ruling, the law could be interpreted to mean that homeschooling is illegal. But, worst of all, his opinion of what consitutes an good education is so subjective that a simple change in administration could make people like me - progressive, Black, open-minded, activist citizens - the target. And that made him a bad apple.


Karen James said...

The irony is that many of the great minds, including most of the founding fathers were home schooled.

One has to wonder what is behind such a passionate opposition to such a predominately peaceful family movement.

Christina Springer said...

As usual Karen - you're right on point. I wish I'd been saavy enough to have made that immediate connection.

Especially in light of the fact that any slaves who learned to read and write - against Antebellum law - did so in their homes. So many of the freedom schools founded were - in essence - cooperatives goverened by parents. From an Afro-centric position - until the battle for Civil Rights, we were responsible for our own. Then we got a bad case of "grass is greener." And in many highly motivated instances it was necessary..but....let me stop.

Bless you Karen for maybe kicking off another my copious free time.

Jax said...

ah, now I see where you are coming from. I've read around some more and I do agree that the judge's ruling seems more than a little confusing - there's a lot of debate out there about it.