Would you take this as an attack on home schooling? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 11 Old 04-02-2011, 11:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
Lisa1970's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 2,526
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

At another website I go to sometimes, but try not to frequent as I have seen people through the years just be attacking and really say awful things, there was this person who comes in and posts what I thought was anti-home school stuff. Basically, she posted that she was concerned about this family of home schoolers. She claimed that the kids were seriously behind. She claimed the oldest, 13 yr old, is at a 4th grade level. Mind you, she only knows these people casually and is not a professional who has done diagnostic testing. She claims the younger are so speech delayed that they are incapable of communicating. But then she claimed when they try to speak to her and others, no one can understand them at all so everyone just smiles and nods. She also went on to say that when she discusses this family with others, everyone agrees that this family has all these problems. She also said that the family has moved several times and never stays in the same place long..meaning..she has not known them long. She also complains that the father is domineering. She feels if only the children were in public school, they would be up to grade level (whatever that is supposed to mean) and they would not be speech delayed and would be getting all the help they need. She wants to know who she can report this family too. She did not say what state they are in.

 

I told her that she needs to butt out. I told her without formal testing, she does not really know where they are academically. If she only knows them casually, then she really likely has no clue where they are at. I also told her that the public schools were not a magic solution and that there is nothing to say they would be better off there. I shared that our local public school had 3 suicides in the last month. Also, if they do have special needs, then the one on one and individualized environment of home schooling may very well be what they need. She then kept harping on how the public schools could fix all the problems and that some of the children seem very spoiled. I pointed out that the public schools cannot find "spoiled." That at the end of the day, the kids will still go home to the parents, who can very well spoil them there still. I reiterated that the public schools are not a magical catch all cure for everything. I also went on to say that while speech therapy can possibly speed up speech development in a child, in many children, it does not. In the ones that it does, it might only speed it up by months. With the exception of very specific cases like hearing impairments and stroke damage, most kids simply overcome the speech delays on their own anyway. It might not be on someone else's time schedule, but it will still happen. Again, she harped on the idea that the kids would not have any of their problems if only they were in public school. She started to say stuff like they were failing to thrive. Someone made a comment that some people home school to cover up for child abuse. I then asked how she could know they were spoiled or that the oldest was at a 4th grade level, if they were incapable of communication? I then pointed out that while she may wish to blame home schooling, public schools have their own problems. They have way higher rates of suicide, lower average literacy rates and test scores, higher rates of drug abuse and self esteem issues. Bullying is a major problem in the schools right now, and bullying is not what it was 20+ years ago, it has taken on an all new dimension. All sorts of things have been going on in the schools from kids having sex on school property at 12 yrs old (happens here) to dealing drugs on property, and so on. So I said, the point is, that public schools are not a magical cure all for all the worlds problems so while she keeps harping that if only they were in public school, they would be so much better off, she really does not know this. I also suggested she stop gossiping because she keeps talking about how much she has discussed this family with other people. 

 

SO....then I was attacked and told that I was saying all public schoolers are bad (I never said that) and that all home schoolers are perfect (to the contrary, I actually brought up a home school family I know of where they had a child who is horribly spoiled, but sending him to school won;t change that because at the end of the day, he will still come home to his parents). One person made just a one sentence response to me saying "did you forget your medication today?" which obviously was meant as an attack. I made it clear when I said "on average,..." and "statistically speaking...." and said stuff like while there are home schoolers who have this problem, there are plenty of public schooler who have these problems too. Public school did not cure it. 

 

I really feel this person was being anti homeschool. I have heard too many times through the years where someone looks to a home school family and has preconceived notions about the family and they cannot even see the truth about that family at all. For example, I was home schooling my other children, but not my child with autism spectrum disorder. A particular person KNEW I was not homeschooling the child with ASD (at that point in time, he is home schooled now) and started in on me how they think that home schooling is causing his social problems and he did not seem to understand how to socialize with the other kids. I had to remind her that that child, the one who had troubles socializing, was my only child in public school. I did comment on the other website that I do have a child with autism spectrum disorder who has been in school for K-2nd and this was his first year home schooling. But that I am certain if he had home schooled all along, that I would be told his autism is caused by home schooling. 

 

Anyway..wouldn't you feel like this person was attacking home schooling? She just kept making claims about the family and the levels their kids were at that sounded almost impossible..and made conflicting remarks about it. Made claims to know exactly what grade level the oldest child was at. But then also said her relationship with them was casual and that she has had many conversations with other people discussing those children. She claimed the younger children were incapable of communication, yet, they tried to speak to her but were intelligible. She claimed to know their reading level (how could she if she could not understand their speaking and had not tried to test them, she has only a casual relationship with the family so when could she have tested them?) She was claiming the 9 yr old was not capable of speech, but tried to talk to her. She also claimed the 13 yr old was specifically at a 4th grade level in most subjects. Again, she only has a casual relationship with this family and claims their speech is so far gone that they cannot communicate, but managed to figure the 13 yr old is at a 4th grade level. And specifically, she wants to know how to report this family so she can force them in to public school where the kids can get the education they need. 

 

I even posted that while I understand there may be plenty of fine experiences with public schools and some fine staff members and so on, public school is not a catch all solution for problems and will not cure everything. She also wanted the public schools to cure the fact that she perceives the dad as too domineering and that she perceives the children are spoiled. 

 

She just reminds me of every single person you ever hear that says while they don't know any home schoolers themselves, they just know home schoolers never have contact with the outside world, they never socialize, they are not educated, they have emotional problems, they cannot function in the world, etc etc. I guess after...how long have I been at home schooling? Eight years. I have heard enough from bigoted people that when I see it, it is very obvious what they are trying to say. When someone claims to have assessed a home school family in such a derogatory way just based on a brief casual relationship and have drawn all these conclusions and want to find a way to force this family in to public school, it just says to me it is anti homeschool. How would you have taken all this?

Lisa1970 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 11 Old 04-03-2011, 12:00 AM
 
Naturallove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Washington State
Posts: 125
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

There is another website that I go to occasionally, though not very often because the people on that board are pretty "mainstream" and do not seem to do any research on things that they practice and believe. Any who, There was a very similar post there recently about a family of "unschoolers" and some busy body was sure that they were neglecting their children by not providing them with an education and they were reporting them to CPS and all sorts of nonsense. duh.gif

 

While, like you, I am completely upset and taken-aback that people think this way and would report on families they have limited knowledge about, that more likely than not aren't causing their children harm. I just think at the end of the day people who are ignorant and bigoted aren't easily persuaded to listen to reason and I have reached the point of exhaustion trying to make them.

 

I am sorry that the people on that board were attacking you. I agree that that woman and the other people on the board agreeing with her are totally out of line. It may be kind of a defeatist move, but I have opted to just roll my eyes and move on to the next post when I see nonsense like that.


Wifey buddamomimg1.png to DH jammin.gif, Mama chicken3.gif to DS 8, DS 6, DD 1
 
homeschool.gif   lactivist.gif    h20homebirth.gif    goorganic.jpg

Naturallove is offline  
#3 of 11 Old 04-03-2011, 12:44 AM
 
moominmamma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: In the middle of nowhere, at the centre of everything.
Posts: 5,808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 95 Post(s)

You know, I think this is just another one of those situations where you have to be very careful not to implicitly attack other parents' choices just because you're defending your own. I think you likely got into trouble when you pointed out that "public schools have their own problems," and gave specific examples. Rather than doing that it probably would have been best to just say something like "It's really hard to know exactly what's going on inside a family like this. In my experience homeschooling is not an easy way out, and school offers parents a lot of perks, so parents who homeschool tend to take it seriously and have good reasons for their choices. I don't think it's our place to judge. If you're concerned about the kids, see what you can do to offer the family the kind of support that they'll appreciate and be receptive to." 

 

Truly, any time you use the negatives of public school to make a point with parents who have chosen public school, you're likely to get get hostility. It's just a fact of life. Live and learn.

 

Miranda


Mountain mama to two great kids and two great grown-ups
moominmamma is online now  
#4 of 11 Old 04-03-2011, 08:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
Lisa1970's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 2,526
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

I was just trying to explain that while she may feel this family is so behind or has all these problems, there is nothing to say the public school can fix it. I used an example of a home school family I know where the child is extremely spoiled, since she was complaining they were spoiled, and that I have thought of suggesting he go to public school, but that in reality, the public school cannot fix bad parenting because at the end of the day, the child still comes home to the parents. I said this happens in public school too. So I was just trying to explain that it all goes both ways and there is only so much the public schools can do. See what I am saying? I thought when I used the example of a home schooler who had problems, it was showing that,yes, there are home schoolers with these problems. but there are public schools with these problems too and sending off to public school is not fixing it, but the ones at home or at the school.

 

When I was a teacher, if a child acted up (they did a lot) there was nothing I could do. I could ask him to stop, please sit, please pay attention. Worse comes to worse, I could send him to the office, but he would be back the next day not caring and acting the same. Point is, I was there to teach, and not fix every single problem a child had from a domineering dad to spoiled child, etc. Even now, I feel parents often just think the schools will fix everything. Think of the movie "Waiting For Superman" and how most of the families thought the school should do way more than just educate. They thought they should come in and fix all. That is just expecting way too much, and it really would take a super hero to be able to children 180 days a year for 7 hours each and completely change their lives and rid of every single problem they have. And while there are plenty of good parents and good kids who do go to public school (most of our friends do do public school, or work there, or both) there is just this unreasonable expectation from some people that public schools are supposed to move continents and make someones life perfect and it just does not work that way. I have seen wonderful teachers quit teaching over stuff like this. But at the end of the day, parents still need to parent their children. And if someone is failing to do it, a public school cannot fix that. Heck, there are parents who will threaten to sue if their perfect child gets told no, ever. 

 

But the point of the whole post was, the OP admitted to barely knowing the family and to having spent a bunch of time gossiping about the familiy to others. Then made conflicting claims that because they were home schooled, they had every problem from a bad domineering dad (that public school could fix) to being so speech delayed that they were incapable of communication to being academically delayed to the point where she was able to state exactly what grade level they were supposedly at. It all struck me as someone who met a home school family and was incapable of seeing them and just drew conclusions on these people just based on preconceived motions.

 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post

You know, I think this is just another one of those situations where you have to be very careful not to implicitly attack other parents' choices just because you're defending your own. I think you likely got into trouble when you pointed out that "public schools have their own problems," and gave specific examples. Rather than doing that it probably would have been best to just say something like "It's really hard to know exactly what's going on inside a family like this. In my experience homeschooling is not an easy way out, and school offers parents a lot of perks, so parents who homeschool tend to take it seriously and have good reasons for their choices. I don't think it's our place to judge. If you're concerned about the kids, see what you can do to offer the family the kind of support that they'll appreciate and be receptive to." 

 

Truly, any time you use the negatives of public school to make a point with parents who have chosen public school, you're likely to get get hostility. It's just a fact of life. Live and learn.

 

Miranda



 

Lisa1970 is offline  
#5 of 11 Old 04-03-2011, 09:49 AM
 
moominmamma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: In the middle of nowhere, at the centre of everything.
Posts: 5,808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 95 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa1970 View Post

I was just trying to explain that while she may feel this family is so behind or has all these problems, there is nothing to say the public school can fix it. .... the OP admitted to barely knowing the family and to having spent a bunch of time gossiping about the familiy to others. 


Oh, I agree with everything you said! I think you're completely right. It's just that I've discovered that it is not such a great idea to share those truths with a public schooling audience. I would have tried to sidestep the whole issue by just reminding her not to judge and instead, if concerned, to offer meaningful support to the family.

 

Miranda


Mountain mama to two great kids and two great grown-ups
moominmamma is online now  
#6 of 11 Old 04-03-2011, 10:33 AM
 
Aeress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Neat the Shores of Lake Erie
Posts: 6,397
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Not to pin this on media, but they certainly haven't helped the homeschooling community- when they share stories, they only share the problem cases. There was a family in the Allegany Mt area of PA who were living without water, heat and electric, the children had un-addressed medical probems, who weren't registered in the town or anywhere, and everyone assumed they were homeschooling because the kids didn't go to school. The kids weren't schooling what-so-ever, not homeschooling, not public schooling. This wasn't a case of those weird homeschoolers, it was a case of true child neglect. (Not saying that you have to have heat, electric, etc- just stating that those were some of the reasons sighted for why they removed the children)

 

In cases like this, it has nothing to do with homeschooling, yet the homeschooling community was told, "you homeschool to hide child abuse." It was a huge leap and it really turned a negative eye onto homeschoolers.

 

People who have negative views of homeschoolers are those who probably are critical of anything outside of the norm. Heaven forbid you question their reasoning for public schooling, but they are welcome to question your reasons for homeschooling. It is a debate that you can never win, because they will always use generalties that while they can't back them up, they will refuse to be able to argue any other point and as you found it, they will make it about you.

 

I can see the value in many arguments for homeschooling or against homeschooling- for public schooling or against. What I can't see the value of, is those who can't even imagine what it might be like to walk in someone elses shoes.


Dhjammin.gif, Me knit.gif, DD 10 REPlaySkateboard04HL.gif, DD 7 cat.gif, DD 4 joy.gif

We reading.gif, homeschool.gif, cold.gif, eat.gif, sleepytime.gif not in that order

Aeress is offline  
#7 of 11 Old 04-04-2011, 11:01 AM
 
ikesmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,168
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Sounds like the woman on that forum had a problem with homeschooling and had something against the family because she wasn't trying to help them. She seemed like she was trying to go against them. I would not engage with the woman whether you think she was pro or anti homeschooling. This may sound terrible on this part of the forum , but honestly I've grown tired of defending homeschooling. I look at people who are anti homeschooling and think so what? who cares? I don't want to be the one to convert them. It isn't my mission to make them see how great homeschooling can be for a child or a family. There was a time I felt that way, but I don't anymore. I think I feel comfortable and I don't need to defend anymore because I have faith in what I am doing. 

We had some friends(husband and wife) that were homeschooling their boys when we met them and then they decided to switch to public school. They were cub scout leaders in our troop as well. As they became more and more involved in the school some issues started to surface that clearly showed they no longer felt homeschooling would be "providing a child enough opportunity" to be their choice of words. I can honestly say I felt very hurt with this on my heart because although I had never seen things eye to eye with this couple on so many other issues I always felt that they supported us in the homeschooling area since they had been prior homeschoolers themselves. I let the hurt die down and realized that it wasn't about me..it was about them and what they were doing and they needed to feel that public school was the best..and they needed to say that homeschooling wasn't the best because they weren't doing it. Whatever people are doing for their kids or themselves they need to tell themselves and believe it is the best. If I work 80 hours a week to pay for my big fancy new Tahoe so I can drive my kids to the Lake on Saturdays.. I tell myself that it is for the best. I only work 16 hours a week so I can spend the week homeschooling my kids.. I tell myself its for the best. Some people think I am lazy and just use my kids as an excuse. Everyone wants to say their way is the best. My advice is don't wait for someone to tell you..tell yourself and tell the ones you love..and don't listen to anyone who tells you your not!

 

P.S

 

YOUR THE BEST!

ikesmom is offline  
#8 of 11 Old 04-04-2011, 11:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
Lisa1970's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 2,526
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by ikesmom View Post

 

P.S

 

YOUR THE BEST!



Thanks!

Lisa1970 is offline  
#9 of 11 Old 04-04-2011, 02:49 PM
 
Roar's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 4,419
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I think it is okay for homeschoolers to admit that there are probably some kids who are homeschooling who might be better served by being in school. I've known families who weren't necessarily abusive in ways that would result in children justifiably being removed by child protective services, but at the same time probably enough that kids might have been better served to be in another environment for some of the day. I can't say I know the solution that. I'm pretty sure it isn't ranting online like the poster you are talking about. And, I'm pretty sure it isn't any form of state regulation. But I don't think in order to believe in or advocate homeschooling you have to maintain it is always a good idea.

Roar is offline  
#10 of 11 Old 04-05-2011, 03:10 PM
 
onlyzombiecat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Northeast Kansas
Posts: 7,237
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I can understand why it frustrated and annoyed you.The person may have been anti-homeschool or may have just had something against that family. I do think some of the other posters were anti-homeschooling.

 

Your points were all true and valid.

I think the thing to do would be to tell her that if she was concerned she could do xyz instead of just telling her at length that she is wrong and ps aren't cure alls. I would encourage her to help rather than report... get to know them better rather than judge them on a few encounters. In the end I'd roll my eyes and stay out of it since the person is most likely not going to do anything either way but maybe they'd be less defensive.

 

 


Kim ~mom to one awesome dd (12)

onlyzombiecat is offline  
#11 of 11 Old 04-05-2011, 10:41 PM
 
Savoir Faire's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Nowhere near a shady tree.
Posts: 1,093
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Personally....I'd stay away from that website. Homeschooling arguments are, quickly, becoming like discussing politics or religion. I just don't go there. You're probably not going to change her mind... and it doesn't seem as if she really wants to listen to you.

 

 


Welcome to the Real World she said to me, condescendingly, take a seat. Take your life; plot it out in black and white.
Savoir Faire is offline  
Reply

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off