The infomercial site that I (will admit) glibly awarded the Worst Headline of the Week carried a new piece “A Brief Look at the History of Homeschooling.” I can not glibly dismiss this article, infomercial or not.
Not until a little before mid 1800s did institutionalized schooling became the norm. Many of America’s founders were educated by mentors, family and apprenticeships without any state-run education system. This is some of the background information and basis for homeschooling catalyst John Caldwell Holt’s book How Children Fail, which came out in 1964.
However, neither of his books addressed or proposed any alternative to education. Holt basically planted the seed for change and many other education dissenters started producing books and articles supporting the premise soon afterward. Author Harold Bennet had actually written a book that gave suggestions on how parents can keep their children out of school illegally.
Only after parents had written him regarding his teaching, stating they started teaching their kids at home, did Holt start producing literature on homeschooling. His last book Teach Your Own, published in 1980, contains his take on homeschooling.
(Oops, the author fails to acknowledge Holt’s Growing Without Schooling started in 1977.)
The piece goes on to talk about the work of Dr. Raymond and Dorothy Moore and then to state, “Studies have found that homeschooling parents are of the Christian faith in the U.S. — nearly 90 percent having been polled said as much.”
I sat with Raymond and Dorothy in both formal meetings and informal brain storming sessions discussing the dangers of dividing the movement along religious lines. We differed in strategy, but their words and deeds supported the diversity of the homeschooling movement and opposed the coming division.
Maybe this ‘brief history’ is innocent, maybe by design, or, the most likely, just good for selling Christian Curriculum. In any case, ignoring the history, which includes the diversity and the purposeful division along religious lines, continues to drive us apart and is not helpful for anyone’s freedom to homeschool.
For now, I will point you to the resource section of this post for more information.
Here is the infomercial.