While I was composing my last post on various arguments against homeschooling, I came across this article, Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids: Why teaching children at home violates progressive values at Slate.com. Hat tip to Joanne Jacobs for bringing the article to my attention. While the actual arguments made by the author aren't particularly new or clever, the responses are very enlightening.
Not so long ago, leftists, liberals, progressives, democrats, or whatever people on the center to left of the political spectrum call themselves, were fairly consistent in their disapproval of home schooling. They wanted to outlaw it, regulate it, test it, restrict it. When homeschoolers proved too legally savvy to defeat in court, liberal types instead mocked it. "Conform!" was their rallying cry.
But things have changed. Despite the author's appeal to progressives' innate sense of duty to enlighten and improve the rest of us by setting good examples, most of the responses to her article were in favor of home schooling! Self-declared liberal after liberal skewered her arguments and defended the rights of parents to do what they consider is best for their children, not what some ideologically driven members of society think is best.
And best of all, they recognize the totalitarian nature of assuming society, or anybody, has a right to demand we give over our children for the good of society. We do not have a moral obligation to support public schools by turning our children over to them. Public schools serve us, not the other way around. Let's not mix up educating our children with social engineering and redemption.
Anyway, it's great to see a greater swath of our society accept home-schooling.