Thursday, June 04, 2009

Those Safe Public Schools?

Hillsborough County prosecutors allege the four boys raped the 13-year-old victim multiple times over two months with a broomstick and hockey stick.

The prosecutor said the victim's screams could be heard outside the boys' locker room at Walker Middle School, in southern Tampa, where the allegedly assaults took place.

Multiple people witnessed the attacks, but no one reported the incidents, including the victim, Hindman said.


Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Who does the brainwashing parents or public school teachers?

JESSE SCACCIA seems to think homeschool parents brainwash their children, these are what he feels are the risk of homeschooling and my rebuttal.

1. The “Othering” of Public School Students

Apparently it's OK for Jesse Scaccia to criticize homeschooling, homeschool parents and homeschool students but how dare we turn the tables and criticize the public schools and public school students. Apparently it never dawns on Scaccia that he is guilty of the very thing he is accusing homeschoolers of, intolerance. That said the majority of kids who attend public schools are nice kids, unfortunately it is the the trouble makers that make the headlines. Just as homeschoolers are stereotyped at geeky public school students have been stereotyped as troublemakers, sex crazed and drug users. Stereotypes that are not fair to either homeschoolers or public school students.

2. Too Much Control From One (Or Highly Limited) Information Sources

The problem with homeschooling is that the parents construct the learning environment. By so doing, they hand choose what elements of society their child is exposed to. If you don’t think this is dangerous, I don’t know what to say to you. A child taught by parents– even a group of parents– is being made privy to a paucity of the viewpoints and perspectives out there. Given that the homeschooler is likely to choose like-minded suplementary teachers (morally, ethically), this leaves the child, basically, in a position of being brainwashed.

Homeschooling isn't about control and our information sources are not limited. Just like public school students homeschoolers use the Internet, they watch TV, listen to the radio, download MP3's and chat with friends. We do not live in a vacuum.

3. It Takes A Myriad of Worldviews To Build A True Educational Environment

Even more importantly, we all agree that accepting others with different viewpoints is paramount to being a good, well-rounded person. Well, how can a child learn to accept and appreciate others if they aren’t around them?

Apparently it's impossible for Scaccia as he appears to be incapable of accepting homeschoolers, even though he is a product of the enlightened and tolerant public schools. As hard as it for Scaccia to grasp we do get out of the house. We meet people in our neighborhoods, in our community, at the grocery and at various other places.

The goal of education should be to teach one to think for themselves. Not as Scaccia believes to ram beliefs down a student's throat. Scaccia's real problem with homeschooling seems to be that he will miss the opportunity to "brainwash" some students who are lucky enough not to wind up in his classroom because they were homeschooled.

The Case for Homeschooling

Public school teachers must be really worried about their job security if they have to stoop to writing post criticizing homeschooling The case against homeschooling By JESSE SCACCIA. HT: Principled Discovery Do homeschoolers care too much?

Here are my (JESSE SCACCIA) top ten reasons why homeschooling parents are doing the wrong thing:

10. “You were totally home schooled” is an insult college kids use when mocking the geeky kid in the dorm (whether or not the offender was home schooled or not). And… say what you will… but it doesn’t feel nice to be considered an outsider, a natural outcropping of being homeschooled.

This reeks of desperation. I mean ADULTS are suppose to make educational choices for their children based on insults college kids use. Am I to infer that Jesse Scaccia would advocate removing children from public schools if college kids were to start using the phrase "You were totally public schooled" as an insult. And while Jesse Scaccia may view homeschoolers as "outsiders" others do not.

9. Call me old-fashioned, but a students’ classroom shouldn’t also be where they eat Fruit Loops and meat loaf (not at the same time I hope). It also shouldn’t be where the family gathers to watch American Idol or to play Wii. Students–from little ones to teens–deserve a learning-focused place to study. In modern society, we call them schools.

I like to think the world is our classroom.

8. Homeschooling is selfish. According to this article in USA Today, students who get homeschooled are increasingly from wealthy and well-educated families. To take these (I’m assuming) high achieving students out of our schools is a disservice to our less fortunate public school kids. Poorer students with less literate parents are more reliant on peer support and motivation, and they greatly benefit from the focus and commitment of their richer and higher achieving classmates.

As a parent I am responsible for making sure MY CHLDREN get the best education possible. No one has a problem with wealthy parents sending their children to the best colleges or the best private schools, so why are homeschoolers accused of being selfish for providing their children with the best education available to them. Jesse Scaccia argument smacks of socialism. I suppose Scaccia thinks we should all live in public housing because not everyone can afford a nice house.

7. God hates homeschooling. The study, done by the National Center for Education Statistics, notes that the most common reason parents gave as the most important was a desire to provide religious or moral instruction. To the homeschooling Believers out there, didn’t God say “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations”? Didn’t he command, “Ye shall be witnesses unto me”? From my side, to take your faithful children out of schools is to miss an opportunity to spread the grace, power and beauty of the Lord to the common people. (Personally I’m agnostic, but I’m just saying…)

Well personally I could care less how God feels about homeschooling, apparently Jesse Scaccia is one of those people who believe those stupid homeschool stereotypes. Memo: ALL HOMESCHOOLERS ARE NOT CHRISTIAN FUNDEMENTALIST. In fact there are agnostic homeschoolers.

6. Homeschooling parent/teachers are arrogant to the point of lunacy. For real! My qualifications to teach English include a double major in English and education, two master’s degrees (education and journalism), a student teaching semester and multiple internship terms, real world experience as a writer, and years in the classroom dealing with different learning styles. So, first of all, homeschooling parent, you think you can teach English as well as me? Well, maybe you can. I’ll give you that. But there’s no way that you can teach English as well as me, and biology as well as a trained professional, and history… and Spanish… and art… and counsel for college as well as a school’s guidance counselor… and… and…

And we all know ALL public school teachers are as well educated as Jesse Scaccia (LOL). The beauty of homeschooling is PARENTS DO NOT HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING THEMSELVES. We join homeschool co-ops where parents teach classes that they are proficient in, we hire tutors, we enroll our children in college classes for dual credit, we take advantage of classes offered by museums for homeschool students. The list of resources available to homeschoolers is endless.

5. As a teacher, homeschooling kind of pisses me off. (That’s good enough for

As a homeschooler Jesse Scaccia attitude toward homeschooling pisses me off. # 5 is a poor reason on Jesse Scaccia's part, apparently Scaccia was grasping at straws to find a #5. I know many public school teachers who are supportive of homeschooling. In fact I know some public school teachers who have "retired" in order to homeschool their own children.

4. Homeschooling could breed intolerance, and maybe even racism. Unless the student is being homeschooled at the MTV Real World house, there’s probably only one race/sexuality/background in the room. How can a young person learn to appreciate other cultures if he or she doesn’t live among them?

Jesse Scaccia displays a remarkable lack of tolerance for homeschoolers. Could it be because he is a product of PUBLIC SCHOOLS????? This criticism is so OUTDATED. Scaccia please keep up with the times, homeschoolers are a diverse bunch (more on homeschool diversity here) and there are INCLUSIVE Homeschool Groups.

3. And don’t give me this “they still participate in activities with public school kids” garbage. Socialization in our grand multi-cultural experiment we call America is a process that takes more than an hour a day, a few times a week. Homeschooling, undoubtedly, leaves the child unprepared socially.

Really that explains why the "Soccer Mom" didn't realize there were four homeschooled kids on her sons soccer team, see my post But They Are So Normal.

2. Homeschooling parents are arrogant, Part 2. According to Henry Cate, who runs the Why Homeschool blog, many highly educated, high-income parents are “probably people who are a little bit more comfortable in taking risks” in choosing a college or line of work. “The attributes that facilitate that might also facilitate them being more comfortable with home-schooling.

”More comfortable taking risks with their child’s education? Gamble on, I don’t know, the Superbowl, not your child’s future.

I don't think homeschooling is gambling with your child's future. It was very rewarding for us. My eldest son started college at 16. This is his senior year and he will graduate with a BS Degree in Computer Science. My youngest son starts college this fall.

1. And finally… have you met someone homeschooled? Not to hate, but
they do tend to be pretty geeky***.

Nice if you can't come up with a good reason insult them. I attended public school there were "geeky kids" , "weird kids" and other "social misfits" in my public school classrooms. Even though they had attended public school their whole life they never really fit in. If you attend public school be honest; you know some too.

Public School Teacher shoots live in companion

A Moss Point High teacher has posted a $25,000 bond and been released in a criminal charge alleging she shot her live-in companion, said Police Sgt. Joycelyn Craig.

The Carnival of Homeschooling - the Baby Bop edition

The Cate's welcome their son into the family with Why Homeschool: The Carnival of Homeschooling - the Baby Bop edition