In a poorly spelled article (See: What’s in a Name HEM May-June 2010) on the Wenatchee World’s site (WA) the concern with blurring the lines between homeschooling and public schooling-at-home comes into clear focus:
Home-school definition, identity blurs with new programs
There’s more than one way to learn at home, but not all of it is home school.
Home school families say they’re trying to make that distinction clear as more students flock to alternative programs — online schools or school-sponsored programs where students stay at home.
The worry is that if these public school programs are widely accepted as home school, then independent home school will be assimilated under government control. They see the blurring of the lines as a threat to their independence.
The difference is who is ultimately responsible for the child’s education: The parent, or the state.
“When public schools, ALE [Alternative Learning Experience] administrators and parents call what they do home schooling and home-schoolers don’t respectfully speak up about the difference, we allow that redefining, graying and ongoing lack of distiction between public school and home schooling,” she [Janice Hedin] said. “Ultimately home-schooling will only be allowed through government home-at-school programs.”
Beyond the distinctiveness issue, of great interest:
T[he] issue came to a head in February when the House Ways and Means Committee proposed cutting all funding to elementary ALE programs, including online school, kindergarten to sixth grade.
Rep. Pat Sullivan, D-Covington, said the proposal was based on a 2004 study that said most ALE students would home school if their program were cut. State education officials say they do not know how many current ALE students came from a home-school background.
Read the article here.