Thursday, March 22, 2012

Warning! I Am on My Soap Box!

So you were warned!  I have my knickers in a twist today!  What has me all riled up?  This article or at least the responses to the article.   For those of you not from SC or a nearby state, you may not know what is going on.  Well, I will tell you.  A county in SC approved the right of home schoolers to play sports in the district where they reside.  Some people got their panties in a bunch and now it is a bill that is going to the state house in Columbia.  Here is my opinion(for what it is worth).....
.....I pay taxes in my state.  I pay the same amount as any other person in my bracket pays.  I educate my children in my home.  I am a productive citizen of my state.  I vote!  I volunteer!  I work!  I attend church!  I support my local economy when I can!  So what does my local or state government do for me?  Not a thing!  My kids can't play anything but rec league sports.  I don't get the benefit of using my local schools or the facility without paying for it(I tried to secure a softball field for rec league practice and I was told I would have to pay).  As far as I know, my taxes go to the schools in my state and since I pay federal taxes, too, I suppose education around the nation.  Since my kids are not adding to the teachers' or the schools' burden, shouldn't I get something for my money other than criticism for my choice or others telling me my kids are unsocialized?  That is up for debate!  I think we should or if not, then give me voucher for my money.

What really has me up in arms are the numbers of people who think that children who school at home are unequipped, shy, backwards children who cannot possibly know how to survive in this world.  They won't know how to handle peer pressure and bullying. They are inept, awkward nerds who cannot function without the benefit of public, traditional school.  Let's see...traditional schools are failing American kids.  Our education system is the worst it has ever been, not to mention the most violent.  Many people home educate because they don't want their kids exposed to that kind of behavior.  Scientific research on the brain suggests that people don't reach full maturity until after the age of 25.  That means we are sometimes incapable of making wise decisions until that age.  I want to help my children to learn to think for themselves, critically.  I don't want them to think only about themselves.  I want them to learn that socialization occurs among different age groups.  In the workforce, there are so many different ages, not just others of the same age.  My kids socialize in that way now!  We visit nursing homes and preschools and hang out with the youth in our church.  My 9YO can converse just as easily with anyone from children to the elderly.  Gone are the days where home schoolers stay on their mountains or in the back woods and hide from society.  We are taking field trips and dual enrolling in college and volunteering and playing sports.  I know that there are still some families out there like that and good for them!  That is their choice!  There are awkward children in the public school who cannot get along with their peers.  Please, do not generalize.  People who do are committing a great disservice to themselves, their children, and their own education.  Stereotypes are bad when race is brought into an argument so they should be bad in all circumstances!

I was schooled in a public school in the very county mentioned above.  I did well in school.  I was the type that would have done well in any school situation.  Going to public school did nothing to prepare me for college.  The socialization of high school is very different than that of college!  I was not taught to make wise choices and I did not always do what was right.  I had to learn all the same lessons that private school what few home school children there were did.  Time management, saying no, studying, choosing friends and activities.  Can anyone explain how high school properly prepared them for a residential college atmosphere?  Maybe a few but no one is fully prepared  until they are in that situation.  So let's change the argument.  The socialization one is old and tired. 
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