Sounds familiar, right? But in the hands of Sharon Harris, the phrase takes a surprising turn. This article was one of the first to get me thinking “outside the box” (literally) when it came to my kids’ education. I remembered it after reading Triple Hash’s fine article.
Mind you, it wasn’t the end-all to changing my mind but it sure got me thinking. Of greater influence were various articles written by John Taylor Gatto. A visit to the local school and conversations with those within the home-schooling vanguard clinched the deal.
You may be telling yourself, “My local school isn’t that bad.” And you’re probably right. However, you may wish to rephrase the statement just a bit. Like so: “My local school isn’t that bad… yet.”
Certainly, the home school way is not the only way, nor is it the best way. It’s just one way which may be the best for some, and it was a hard-fought legal battle to make it so.
A good test of a nation’s freedom can be found in the amount of voluntary choice that exists for those who live there. With regards to education, attendance is mandatory, as is the payment of large chunks of money toward its end. Not very free, and certainly no one opts out without political, legal, and social repercussions, and while the ability to home-school suggests that educational choices are freer here than in other countries, we could do much better.
Maybe vouchers would be a good way. Personally, I would leave the entire ordeal to those people who should be first and foremost responsible for their kids: the parents. If that makes many people shudder, so be it. Such a reaction, in my opinion, belies this country’s belief in liberty.
At the heart of government education can be found the socialist ideal. Make it voluntary, and it instantly becomes something quite different. How many would make education voluntary and paid for solely by the parents and any philanthropy that came their way? To disagree makes you a socialist to some degree, since you are then advocating forced education and the forced theft of money to pay for it. Keep in mind that all positive rights are grounded in socialist theory.
Surely, extreme examples of parental misconduct are headed my way as justification for forced schooling. Be warned, for every heinous example you wish to offer up, I have hundreds of thousands of horrific examples with which to counter. Socialism demands its payment at the end of its run and the cost, in the universally understood denomination of lifeless bodies, is far greater than most minds wish to consider up front.
I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it. – Thomas Jefferson