Earlier this month, suburban Chicago’s DeKalb Chronicle ran an article on area homeschoolers and the recently started up DeKalb County Home Educators group. One of the group co-founders pointed out a reason many families set off homeschooling.
Home schooling an increasingly popular option for DeKalb County families By Felix Sarver
Patty Ruback, the co-founder of the DeKalb County Home Educators, said she decided to home-school her 5-year-old daughter, Saige, because she didn’t feel Saige was emotionally ready for preschool. Ruback didn’t want to push her daughter into an uncomfortable situation and dampen her budding learning career.
Patty Ruback was able to use her parental discretion for her daughter’s well-being. This spring, Illinois’ compulsory attendance age was lowered to 6 years of age from the previous age of 7. The sponsor, Senator Kimberly Lightford, wanted the age lowered to 5 years of age, but compromised at 6. President Obama’s state Senate replacement, Kwame Raoul, would like the age reduced to 3 years of age.
From the article:
“What I want for her to experience in life is a lifelong love of learning,” Ruback said. Illinois is a home-school friendly state, Jaros said. Home-schooled children are not required to register with the state and there are no testing requirements. Every couple of years, lawmakers try to make state registration and testing a requirement, he said. That goes against the idea of home schooling altogether. “That’s an ongoing battle to keep our freedoms and educate our kids the way we feel is best, without having to answer to our government,” Jaros said.
As shown by the compulsory attendance bill, the financial educational woes in Illinois are often ignored, while homeschoolers continue to fight for educational freedoms and choices for all families. Legislators like Lightford and Raoul will be back pushing hard for more “Early Education for All” initiatives, despite the feedback they get from constituents. We see the writing on the wall and the lesson learned doesn’t involve ABCs and 123s. Rather, it’s filling the building. Homeschooling is a great option in Illinois and homeschoolers will continue to fight for educational freedoms and choices for all families.