Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Baloney Baffles Brains

Today officially marks the beginning of our home-school year. What that really means is not that we started schooling - we've been doing that since the Evil Genius was born, really - but rather that we began doing paper work.

Georgia isn't as bad as some states when it comes to sticking the state's nose into our schooling and regulating it to death. They aren't the best, either. We have to fill out a declaration of intent every year and send it to the superintendent of our school district, and every month we must keep and mail in an attendance form. Because there might be a day when he skips home? Also, every three years (grades 3, 6, 9, and 12) he has to have a standardized test...although if he utterly fails to answer even one question right it won't matter, because the tests don't carry any weight - no consequences for failing them. Not that I plan to let him fail, no fear.

Aside from that, there's no regulation, but I am grumpy about having to fill in and mail an attendance sheet every month. I am grumpy about paying the postage, and I am grumpy because I just know I'll forget one month and all Hell will break loose. Even if we don't school one month (not likely), we have to send in the form. Sigh.

Still, it's not too bad a deal..I've simply had the last five years to school without worrying about regulation, so now this light harness is chaffing a bit.

So, do you home-school? Know home-schoolers? Have an opinion, thought, concern, or anecdote about it? Go ahead, you know you want to say something about it...

6 comments:

paisana said...

So, I want to know what made you decide to home school. Parents have all different kinds of reasons for making this choice, and it's something I'm very curious about.

You want me to sound off? Ok, it boils down like this: as a former teacher, I believe that while the quality of education is comperable (or better than) school, I think that there are social lessons that are best learned in a large environment and I have never once seen them taught at home. And yeah, growing up in school is painful, but it's painful for ALL of us.

Kit said...

I am also a former teacher, though I never accepted a full time position. (I ultimately wasn't comfortable trying to work with that system.) I have to say that the social lessons usually learned in a public school environment are not "lessons" that I feel are desirable or even necessary. Those "large group" social lessons that *are* helpful can be found in many other settings, and often with a lot more positive results. I don't think children have to be subjected to a "painful" environment in order to learn how to work effectively with other people- kids can still learn tough social lessons outside of school.

Writer Dad said...

As a general rule, I think the quality of education available in public school is a joke. I never sat through a class where I wasn't bored. Fortunately, we found a dual immersion program for our daughter, so the school is teaching her something that we can't. In addition, the students at the school are a part of this program and tend to be a bit more on the serious side, so the social lessons probably have more value. By the time our kids hit middle school though, we plan to be traveling and educating them ourselves. I don't think they'll be missing out on anything. Social or otherwise.

devilsivy said...

Sign an attendance form each month or get to a specific time and place twice daily five times a week? Feather-light harness, dear mama horse! May it brush you gently.

Kyddryn said...

Paisana, good question. I think I'll use my answer as blog-fodder - cheers!

Kit, if I had the dough I'd hire you to fill the Evil Genius' head with the good stuff, because I know you can do it. Oh, well...maybe we can get some activities planned soon...maybe...

Writer Dad, I intend to take the Evil Genius out on the road in a few years, teach him history, geography, geology, and a some other 'ologies, too. I traveled a bit as a kid, and seeing Normandy (and the graves there) made much more of an impression that simply reading about it.

Devil's Ivy, I am not all that put out...but if I didn't bitch, I wouldn't be me!

Thanks, y'all, for commenting - I am always interested to know why folks are home-schooling, or why they have concerns about it...and it's going to be a constantly evolving part of my life for the next eighteen years, so maybe your questions, comments, and concerns will help me shape the experience for the kid and me. I. Er...when do I have to cover that?? I better get reading...where's that grammar book...?

chris said...

I'm a big supporter of Public Schools but I also like parents to have a choice where to send their children to school.

As long as learning is happening, I'm all for it...Good Luck, if you need any help with lesson ideas, drop me a line...