From an article in the Seattle Post Intelligenger about Seattle Public School’s “Homeschool Resource Center” :
Homeschool-public school bonds growing:
More parents are supplementing lessons at home by embracing public school partnerships
The author writes:
“In the two decades since Washington families successfully fought for the right to teach their children themselves, thousands of kids have been educated at their own kitchen tables. But in the last 10 years, homeschooling has quietly evolved.
Now, more parents are joining public school partnerships, or “alternative learning programs,” to supplement their home lessons — and more school districts are reaching out to them, offering such programs as the fast-growing Homeschool Resource Center in North Seattle.”
Does a return to public schools indicate an evolution of homeschooling? Am I a Neanderthal for thinking it does not? I posted the following in the Soundoff section:
The parent-partnered programs offered by school districts in Washington state, while similar to homeschooling, are distinct in several important areas.
Students using the programs are enrolled as full or part-time students for the purposes of state funding and accountability. Accountability includes submitting learning plans and periodic meetings with a teacher/advisor.
Education for students homeschooling under our Home-Based Instruction law is not funded by the state. We are self-supervising and free to choose methods and resources suited to our students and families.
I don’t see the public school programs as an evolution of homeschooling because they are a different option, operating under different regulations. Perhaps these programs could be better described as an evolution of public schooling, in that they incorporate many of the positive aspects of homeschooling in a public school model.
It’s great if parents are finding a good fit for their children in these programs, but homeschoolers should not buy in to the notion that homeschooling independently is too hard. It is certainly a different lifestyle requiring a different orientation to living and learning.
Homeschooling challenges both the parent’s and the student’s self-direction, creativity and resourcefulness and hones these skills at the same time. It is a humbling and satisfying path.
posted by Sandi Chelan