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Friday August 12th 2022

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Readers, Please Help: Can Homeschooling Help Public Schools?

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Readers, Please Help: Can Homeschooling

Help Public Schools?

By Linda Dobson


The more, the merrier.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the recent uproar between parents and teachers that commenced with a teacher of the year’s advice to parents last week. I keep recalling my interview with Jason Taylor’s mom for Homeschoolers Success Stories in which she stated, “You can’t really see a system until you’re not in it.”

But then, I also recall a teacher’s review of The Art of Education: Reclaiming Your Family, Community and Self: “Well I’m still shaking. I picked this book up at a used book seller, its cover torn and the pages well used. I thought it might be an answer to the impass I feel as a first year teacher. The parent in me feels struck by lightening. The earth has moved and I’m wondering where to go next. Ms. Dobson has certainly changed the view of things in my mind. Her argument is remarkable, powerful, stunning. I’m practically speechless. I’ve picked up 4 more books on homeschooling just today and spent 12 hours searching the net in the last couple of days. How can I ever thank you? People… please, please read this book! Our children are at stake.”

Here’s a teacher who “got it.” Did she “get it” because she was “of” the system? Or did she get it because in her heart she was already out of the system?

See also “Politicians Blame Teachers, Teachers Blame Parents

In my heart, I know we possess knowledge that might help children and teachers stuck in the system. As you’re aware, though, it’s quite possible the only thing that will help is a dismantling of the existing system to make room for improvement, the wisdom inherent in “only an empty cup can be filled.”

Can Homeschooling Help Public Schools?

I write all this because, dear readers, as experienced homeschoolers, I want your help in the form of honest answers to the question, “Can homeschooling help public schools?” If so, how? If not, why not?

There’s no denying by anyone that the system is in bad shape. I’ve lost count of how many teachers, parents, groups and organizations, both formal and informal, are working hard to change the status quo. Some are tinkering around the edges because of a firm belief that the system must remain for equality. The vision of others goes much farther toward something totally new.

Your Valuable Homeschooling Experience May Be Key

It’s my hope that gathering the fruit of our collective homeschooling experience can be of assistance. We know that educational and life freedom is the foundation of homeschooling success for children. We could ponder whether or not homeschooling success is somehow transferable to the greater world of education. Parts of it? Enough parts to make a difference? If not, we can collectively figure out how to get word of homeschooling to ever more parents!

Please lend your voice, and share with homeschooling friends…the more, the merrier.


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5 Responses to “Readers, Please Help: Can Homeschooling Help Public Schools?”

  1. Cathy says:

    Homeschooling and especially unschooling can help, IMO, first and foremost because it would be unethical to run a large-scale, long-term experiment on kids in which you deny them something thought to be essential. When I say "something essential," I speak of course of "education," defined as most modern parents define it, as traditional schooling. However, Because many us parents believed that traditional schooling is NOT, in fact, essential and chose to homeschool or unschool our kids, we already have a large-scale, long-term experiment underway. If even half the kids who were home/unschooled are successful, learned, skillful, and happy, I would say that this gives educators a huge piece of knowledge about the "necessity" of teacher training, pre-ordained curricula, classes and tests and grades, even teachers. I would argue (although mostly based on anecdotal evidence rather than rigorous studies) that way more than half of home/unschooled "kids" who are now grown are successful, learned, skillful, and happy.

  2. I was going to post a response to this in a comment but decided that it would be too long. I have responded to this question in a post on my blog:

  3. dan says:

    Linda, thanks for asking!
    I do not wish to help public schools. Children, yes of course. Institutions, no. Society falsely believes public school as "for" children when everything it does is against children. I can volunteer my time to children and their families. We, as homeschoolers, need to show parents that learning happens all the time. Public schools say important things are learned from 8 to 3. I want families to believe in themselves and in the innate ability of their children to learn. Families have a choice on what their children learn. This includes learning such things as bullying in public school. Learning should not have such a high price to pay. Instead parents should be allowed to savor time with their kids.
    I do not wish to use my knowledge of homeschooling to help public schools. Instead I hope to show by example that homeschoolers are "normal", participating citizens who believe in children. I believe anyone can learn outside of arbitrary rules. This is something I am willing to share with families.

    • grandma_linda says:

      Thank you very much for reading and taking the time to share your thoughts…good ones, too! Very grateful you're a reader!

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