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Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - Printable Version

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Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - magikarp - 01-26-2015 07:20 AM

Quote:Could such a go-it-alone ideology ever be truly progressive—by which I mean, does homeschooling serve the interests not just of those who are doing it, but of society as a whole?

In her N+1 piece, Taylor struggles to answer this question in the affirmative. Drawing upon her own upbringing, as well as on the traditions of the radical private school the Albany Free School, Taylor calls on parents and students to “empty the schools,” which force students to endure “irrational authority six and a half hours a day, five days a week, in a series of cinder-block holding cells,” she caricatures.

This overheated hostility toward public schools runs throughout the new literature on liberal homeschooling, and reveals what is so fundamentally illiberal about the trend: It is rooted in distrust of the public sphere, in class privilege, and in the dated presumption that children hail from two-parent families, in which at least one parent can afford (and wants) to take significant time away from paid work in order to manage a process—education—that most parents entrust to the community at-large.

Take, for instance, Sonia Songha’s New York Times account of forming a preschool cooperative with six other brownstone-Brooklyn mothers, all of whom “said our children had basically never left our sides.” Indeed, in a recent Newsweek report, the education journalist Linda Perlstein noted a significant number of secular homeschoolers are also adherents of attachment parenting, the perennially controversial ideology defined by practices such as co-sleeping with one’s child and breast-feeding for far longer than typical, sometimes well beyond toddlerhood. Meanwhile, in suburban New Jersey, one “hippy” homeschooler told the local paper she feared exposing her kids to the presumably negative influences of teachers and peers. “I didn’t want my child being raised by someone else for eight hours out of the day,” she said.

Recent reports of teachers and teachers' aides in Los Angeles and New York molesting children only flame the fans of such fears. But these stories make news exactly because they are so rare; there's something creepy about giving in totally to the terrors of the outside world harming one's child. In a country increasingly separated by cultural chasms—Christian conservatives vs. secular humanists; Tea Partiers vs. Occupiers—should we really encourage children to trust only their parents or those hand-selected by them, and to mistrust civic life and public institutions?

Moreover, being your child’s everything—her parent, teacher, baby-sitter, and afterschool program coordinator—requires a massive outlay of labor. Songha’s pre-K cooperative hired a teacher, but parents ended up putting in 10 to 12 hours of work per week administrating the program. Astra Taylor’s father was a college professor, while her mother supervised the four children’s “unschooling.”


http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2012/02/homeschooling_and_unschooling_among_liberals_and_progressives_.html


RE: Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - TheCancer - 01-26-2015 07:50 AM

It's funny that this supposedly "progressive" ideological guide doesn't mention just asking the kid if he or she wants to go to regular school or not.


Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - lisafromjackson - 01-26-2015 08:13 AM

I think that's really interesting. I'm pretty far on the left, myself, and definitely think choosing not to attend school is a perfectly find decision.


Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - MurkScribe - 01-26-2015 10:59 AM

Like anarchist left? But yes Liberals still have the same base ideology of people and boils down to the same fanatic dogmas like the church.


Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - brainiac3397 - 01-26-2015 01:08 PM

It doesn't have to be politics. This is just a case of people looking for the gold in the shit.

It's like everything in America has become some pseudo-political reaction. You made a left turn? you must be a liberal! You bought a red scarf? probably a conservative.

Bleh.


Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - Rule_BreakerXVIII - 01-26-2015 05:38 PM

I'm a pretty possessive person; I (sometimes literally) hiss and bite the people who try to take decisions regarding me or anything of mine- like my sister, my cell phone, or even my cat. So, this sentence really alarms me.

Quote:This overheated hostility toward public schools runs throughout the new literature on liberal homeschooling, and reveals what is so fundamentally illiberal about the trend: It is rooted in distrust of the public sphere, in class privilege, and in the dated presumption that children hail from two-parent families, in which at least one parent can afford (and wants) to take significant time away from paid work in order to manage a process—education—that most parents entrust to the community at-large.

Take, for instance, Sonia Songha’s New York Times account of forming a preschool cooperative with six other brownstone-Brooklyn mothers, all of whom “said our children had basically never left our sides.” Indeed, in a recent Newsweek report, the education journalist Linda Perlstein noted a significant number of secular homeschoolers are also adherents of attachment parenting, the perennially controversial ideology defined by practices such as co-sleeping with one’s child and breast-feeding for far longer than typical, sometimes well beyond toddlerhood. Meanwhile, in suburban New Jersey, one “hippy” homeschooler told the local paper she feared exposing her kids to the presumably negative influences of teachers and peers. “I didn’t want my child being raised by someone else for eight hours out of the day,” she said.

So, if a certain part of society cannot walk, will they force all of it into wheelchairs to make the disabled people feel better? There is no way in hell that I'd entrust anything important to the public; and parents really need to draw the line between private and public matters. It's the parents' child, not the society's.


RE: Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - megawatt - 09-02-2015 03:41 AM

What's not progressive about making your own decisions? Or does someone define progressiveness as collectivism?


RE: Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - no - 09-02-2015 07:59 AM

Life is so grand in our town....


RE: Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - Cianna200 - 09-02-2015 08:43 AM

(Hmph) Ah don't keep your children at home where they are more free, send them to us where we will restrict their freedom severely and crush their little minds so that they are ignorant enough to OBEY without question! "Sound trustworthy don't we?"


Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - schoolsux - 09-02-2015 10:38 AM

Exactly what should happen. Not.


RE: Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids - magikarp - 09-02-2015 11:18 PM

(09-02-2015 03:41 AM)megawatt Wrote:  What's not progressive about making your own decisions? Or does someone define progressiveness as collectivism?
Supporting certain public goods isn't inherently collectivist. It's fairly standard progressive belief to support things (e.g., public education) that equalize opportunity.

Saying that it might be bad politics to homeschool your kids is not equivalent to saying it shouldn't be allowed; it's not taking away that decision.