I support people who want to homeschool. I don’t agree that parents can’t get others to instruct their children. As parents, we should all want our children to be at least as successful as we were, perhaps even more so. That frequently means letting or hiring others to teach our children things that we cannot.
There are simply some subjects that I don’t feel qualified enough to teach others. So I subcontract it out.
The problem with today’s education is that parents have abdicated much of their parental duties to teachers. School has become more of a babysitting service than it has a place of learning. Parents need to be involved in their children’s education. They aren’t. Even most of the ones who think that they are involved aren’t involved in their education, they only care about their child’s GRADES, and that is not the same thing.
- What are your kids learning in school this week?
- Do you know the names of their teachers?
- Is your child behaving? Who are his friends? Does he hang out with one of “those kids?” Is your child one of “those kids?”
- Have you seen his text books? If you are in Florida, schools involve parents in the selection of textbooks. Did you know that? If you did, have you participated in that process?
- Did you know that most teachers maintain a web page that lets you know what your child is studying? Do you check it frequently?
- Most schools have online gradebooks. What grade did your child receive on his last 5 assignments in each of his classes? If you don’t know, do you at least know where to find out?
Or do you just wait for report cards to come out, and make sure his grades look good?
Look, after the seven years I spent as a teacher, I can tell you that there are many problems with our kids’ education. Yes, there are poor teachers. Yes, there are poor schools, and poor school boards. The way that we got there was through parents not being truly involved in the lives and education of their children. This didn’t happen overnight.
I had parents who were surprised at the end of the year to learn that their child was failing my class. Every week, I would call the parents of students who were failing my class, so we could work together to salvage their grades. I couldn’t get ahold of most of them. Some even deliberately gave the school the incorrect phone number so they wouldn’t be bothered by “all of those phone calls from the school.”
You are the single best advocate for your children. No one cares more for them than you do. So act like it. If your school involves parents in the selection of textbooks, get involved. If your teacher has a website explaining what is going on in the classroom this week, read it. Learn the names of your kids’ teachers. Go to open house. If you can’t be bothered to spend two hours a week being involved with your child’s education while he is in school, you sure aren’t going to be any better at homeschooling.