My wife and I home educated our children for 23 years. For the first ten years at least, we endured the typical questions: “Is that legal?” (America educated its children through home education for hundreds of years before public school districts were established throughout the country at the end of the 19th century. Yes, courts in all fifty states have upheld the legality of parents educating their children.) “How will they ever be socialized?” (Our kids took piano, swimming, soccer, dance, martial arts, speech and debate, art and went on numerous field trips with plenty of kids from every sort of ethnic/religious/economic diversity…and they turned out just fine.) Another one was “how will they ever get into college?” Two of my
children are college graduates (from regionally accredited colleges), and a third one is currently enrolled in college.
The last question was also often phrased as a statement. “How do you do that?” The idea of educating one’s own children by one’s self completely baffled many. Often they re-phrased it to “Oh I could NEVER homeschool! I don’t have the patience/education/time/organization….”
Now, due to the coronavirus, almost all Americans are educating their kids at home. I wonder how many are seeing for the first time that the way so many Americans were taught long ago, is actually a rewarding and enriching journey. Home education is how George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Helen Keller, George Patton, Thomas Edison, and most of our nation’s earliest “movers and shakers” were taught.
I wonder how many are realizing for the first time how much their children know…and what important things they don’t know…but should. I wonder how many now see that this is something that they could do for their children, with just a little bit of encouragement.
We’ll see. Meanwhile, welcome America, to the world of home education. How will this episode change how we teach kids in this country?