Country Living Series

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Homeschooling: The legacy effect

Here's my WND column for this weekend, which was originally titled "Homeschooling: The legacy effect."


As usual, some critics disagreed, notably as follows:

In my opinion, your case is a rare one. Most kids I know of that were home schooled are social misfits and cannot relate with other people. Very few have skill enough to get through college and some of the ones that do go have completely rejected the Christian life their parents tried to keep them in. If you're in a school system totally corrupt, maybe it's the best option, but it should be a last resort. If homeschooling parents devoted the same amount of time working with the school, volunteering, attending school board meetings, etc, conservatives can have an impact on children for the better. Jesus wants us to be salt in the earth and not hide our light under a basket.

And another:

Notwithstanding the wisdom of embracing the merits of homeschooling, I was expecting the result to be that both girls were students at Harvard. The results are that one is an 'au pair' and the other a part time student at an unnamed college. Neither sounds like a rousing success. And denigrating colleges as graduating students with "useless degrees in Entitlement and Victimology" is an insult to all institutions of higher learning, many of which teach meritorious disciplines and confer degrees that have practical value. There also are many conservative/Christian schools and three service academies that produce some quality graduates, most of whom were likely not home schooled.

Regardless of the snarks, we certainly have no regrets about educating our girls at home.

39 comments:

  1. You forgot the link.

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    1. Oops, sorry! Link is in place now.

      - Patrice

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  2. I have known wonderful, well socialized,home schooled students who are successful in college and students who have completed regular public and/or private education who are rude, disrespectful and so self centered they disrupt a college class. Either student can be a success or a failure. I do know that between the extremes of the two types the homeschooled are usually easier and more pleasant to be around. Natodakn

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  3. And we have no regrets, either. Our son graduated with honors from a community college and is now attending Texas A&M with straight A grades. Our oldest daughter attended a private university and was on the Dean's list when she decided to get married and leave school. Our second daughter graduated from Union University (private university) and graduated with honors. Our third daughter graduated Univ. of Idaho and attended a university in Malta as a visiting student in her senior year. Each of them had success in jobs after school, has been active in church and in their communities. The women are now mothers and have decided to homeschool their children. This is how this woman defines success in her life. Meary

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  4. I began my career as a pre-school teacher, was VERY actively involved in my childrens public school education. I was shocked and unprepared for problems that arose in their high school years, not with my boys, but with the culture and system. I realize now, that even as my chidren grew up in the public school system, I was 'home schooling'. Is learning confined to 9-3 pm? By the time they graduated high school (1990) I was already saying, "if I had young children today, I would home school" I meant it, and encourage others to look into it. As my children branched out into the world, I ended up working as a Social Worker, going to from school to schoool, teaching things such as violence and substance abuse prevention, peer mediation, helping students to create bully-prevention programs in their schools. Why are these things needed. requested, begged for in public schools? I have seen students as young as 12 dragged out of classes in handcuffs, teachers crying before, during and after classes, police patrolling schools, etc etc etc. Now let's add Common Core, Globalism (as in there are 5-20 different languages in any given student population, a revised history that seeks to avoid national pride and embrace 'global citizenry') metal dectectors, slow but sure erosion of Christian expression, and other unasked for agendas pushed by a liberal teachers union.Let's bring it back down to size again. What decent parent really agrees that putting thousands of 12-15 year old boys and girls together with minimal supervision is a good idea? I give you the normal, average middle school.
    I strongly endorse Home Schooling in it's many various and creative forms, and other alternatives (charter schools, small religious schools) whole heartedly. Yes the 1 % of public school grads will 'survive' and go on to college. (These days, is that really the ultimate??) Most will be lost, traumatized and confused. Parents.....take control and MAKE SURE your kids are taught morals, values, critical thinking, reading writing and 'rithmatic. Please don't leave your child at the mercy of public school these days.
    The issues I describe here has nothing to do with great teachers in public school, and I know there are many. I also know many frustrated, and disillutioned, my son being one. He taught one year in public high school and got out, never to return, The problem is that the system may not be what you expect or want or as parent, and society has created a more aggressive, unmannered even violent student populace.
    Look into these things, and consider options.
    Thank you for another great article Patrice. Thanks for letting me share this passionate rant!!

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  5. I have known about 20 home schooled people. Some were teen agers and some were in their 40's. They were all outstanding folks. I can same the same thing about mormons. With 2 notable exceptions every one that I have had dealings with were very nice and smart as well.

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  6. I think the above complainers "protesteth too much." It must have hit too close to home.

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  7. The two greatest gifts that parents can give their children are Jesus Christ and schooling at home. You and Don accomplished both.
    Montana Guy

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    1. I totally agree. Knowing Jesus is what it's all about.

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  8. In answer to the first persons comments; what world are you living in? A single person or even several will not change the mind set of the usually very liberal school boards, principles or teachers. If they were able to help plot the course of their schools, we won't be having so many schools catering to Muslims, allowing them either time off to pray or dedicating a class room for them to pray in. Or allow them to force our girls into wearing the Muslim garb. The parents go out in force at the school board meetings and are usually either forced down or out and declared as racists. For the second person, home schooled kids do go to colleges and when they do they are head and shoulders ahead of their public school fellow students. Just because these girls chose a path that you don't agree with doesn't make them wrong, poor students or permanently flawed. They are well educated, well informed and perfectly capable of choosing for themselves what they want to do with their lives. Not everyone wants to go the Harvard, it's not a sign of success, nor does everyone wish to give so much of their lives to the military which they'd have to do. I grew up in the Chicago school system and it was/is terrible, so I educated myself by reading and learning on my own. I hold two degrees, one in industrial engineering and the other in criminal justice. Not to brag but I graduated with honors with both degrees. Yet I had classmates from public schools who couldn't read words with more then 5 letters in them, couldn't count past 10, do simple math or find their hometown on a map. So don't tell me that it's a mistake to homeschool, to not put your most precious lives in the hands of the public schools and then hope/pray they don't really screw the kids minds up. I made it through, despite the extremely poor education I was given at Chicago's public school system, but many are not so lucky and are hampered the rest of their lives by the damage done to them there. And finally, you don't have to like or agree with this family's choices, you can just ignore it and go your own way without being the jerk about it and denigrating what they have successfully done, even if it doesn't meet your personal standards.

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  9. Oh my goodness! I'm a teacher in a public school, and my children attended a public school. I know kids who were home-schooled and those who attended private Christian schools. I can show you kids from all three who are successful. I can show you kids from all three who are lazy bums. I can show you kids who are academic successes, academic failures, those who attended college, those who attended trade school, those who are successfully employed, those who refuse to work, and those who are struggling financially. I attended a "no name" university. My no name high school graduating class was a big whoppin' 43 kids. I have a B.S, a M.S., and an M.A.

    Quit judging others because they don't fit your idea of what people should be. These two young adult girls appear to be doing what they enjoy. As long as they're able to support themselves, what do you care?!

    End of rant.

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    1. Well said Grammy! Generalizations tend to muck up the works. Everyone has a different purpose in life. Even with all the mistakes I've made with my own kids, God has worked out some wonderfully miraculous things.

      What should be generalized is the idea that the federal government knows what's best for our kids...or anything else.
      Julia

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  10. WOW! Stupidity is alive & well. Sad I know many home schooled people. Both are professionals one an MD and one a CPA...

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  11. If I had children these days, I would also choose to home school, knowing what I know now. And I did volunteer in my children's parochial and public school classrooms. All I got from the teachers is how overwhelmed they were. As an aside, I attended parochial school through grade 8. When I went to public high school, the teachers almost overwhelmingly loved the parochial students because we were so better prepared. Fast forward to my children in parochial school, and it was absolutely no better than the public schools.

    Patrice, you and Don have done a wonderful job with your daughters. I see them both as successful in life.

    College isn't for everyone.I went right out of high school, and partied my way out. I did go back later in life, when I was better prepared and had some life experience. But I see absolutely nothing wrong with trade schools. We actually NEED more folks to go to trade schools!

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  12. The two "snarkers" wouldn't know their own bias if it slapped them in the face. Truly IMO homeschooled students are vastly ahead of their public school counterparts. Time and time again we see examples. Our first snarker could not come up with any examples. HMMM! what does that tell you?

    We home schooled our two boys. The elder has an associate degree in computers.... yet he is now a computer systems engineer with a prominent international company with a very well paying job. The younger got an associate culinary degree but unless you are willing to really invest a lot of time, $, etc. to own your own rest.... well, you get the picture. He has a benefit in that he also has great computer skills and is well compensated for his work in a tax software firm. They are both on their own and NOT living in our basement with a useless BA or BS degree in whatever field.

    Kudos to all homeschooling parents for waking up to the reality that public education is the least desirable choice.

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  13. Saw today that Dr. James Dobson (Focus on the Family, Family Talk) is encouraging Christian families to pull their children from public school, and endorsing home school.
    Also....I certainly do agree that Patrice and Dons' exemplary daughters are wonderful success stories!!

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    1. Unfortunately a lot of children nowadays are being raised by one parent. That parent has to work and cannot home-school. If the parent is on welfare, they often lack the discipline and/or resources to home-school. Since I was a single mom (unfortunately) I sent my daughter to Catholic schools most of her life. So, it's not always easy, but so necessary. Yes, Patrice and Don are wonderful success stories. God is good.

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  14. Living in Idaho we are surrounded by many home schooling families, one concern that might be mentioned is...Many but not all home school mothers and fathers elevate their children by home schooling into aa elite or holy then thou status. Parents if home schooling please don't instill an environment where your children walk around telling other children they are better then others for that up bringing. Please consider the false elevated status that is so often present by home schooled children... Not all but some...

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  15. Our public school system is really great, we have dropped to number seventeen in the world, in education. If you want to see more examples of public school failure, look no further than member of congress and our own state elected officials. Home school and private school are the only hope. Sixty per cent of my tax bill goes to schools and I get nothing in return, except more mush brained people looking for a job, that they can not do.

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    1. Nowadays they get indoctrinated and not educated. So sad for our future generations.

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  16. I was speaking with a friend in the public school system on Saturday. She has a student in her classroom that attacked the principal at another school, was removed by his parents, and now attends her school and is in her class.

    She told me that many of the older teachers are retiring while the younger teachers are leaving the field out of frustration with the paperwork, the curriculum, and the lack of recourse for violent and disruptive students. She works at an elementary school in one of the top school districts in the state.
    As for friend, she'll be leaving at the end of the school year after nine years.



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    1. About twelve years ago, I taught at charter schools and one private school in Detroit Michigan. The children in the charter schools were mostly a terror. Most of them were very disrespectful and I would never want to teach there again. One white teacher (all the rest were black, as well as 99 percent of the students) got beat up by a parent. This white teacher gently pushed the black student and she went and exaggerated to her mom. That was the last time I saw the white teacher. I have many other stories, but government schools are definitely not what they used to be when were young in the 60's.

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  17. After sending my kids to public schools, I often wish that I would have home schooled. In my experience, about 1 out of 3 public school teachers is good or above average. Not good odds.

    The leftist indoctrination that they receive is intense, but easy to counter, as we have taught our children to ask questions and think for themselves. They see through all the marxist nonsense quite easily. Just the fact that we can give satisfactory answers to their questions and back them up with independently verifiable facts always wins the day. Plus, as their parents, they obviously trust us.

    Don't despair of public school kids. Raised correctly, they still can turn out ok, despite the lousy school systems. But they definitely graduate a step or two behind the home schooled kids, IMO.

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  18. Words matter. The word is baby not fetus, homosexual not gay, illegal not undocumented, murder of innocents not collateral damage.

    How about using 'government school' vs 'public school'?

    Montana Guy

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    1. Absolutely!! Words do matter. My thoughts exactly.

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  19. My goodness!! I wonder what your snarkers would consider a "rousing success"??

    Very thankful I'm not their kid...

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  20. Hello my dear Patrice,

    It's been a while since I've written, but I couldn't resist this. There will always be haters and ignorant and or dumb folks. If I knew then what I know now, I also would have homeschooled my only daughter. I did send her to a Catholic school her first three years and her last two years. The Spanish teacher and Religion teacher were both lesbians, but I couldn't do anything about that, since I had to work full-time and that was the only decent school in our Detroit area. She graduated with a great GPA and got accepted at U of M and Michigan State. She decided on UofM and that was a disaster. She lived on campus and did the drinking, sorority and other crazy things for four years. She ended up majoring in Women Studies, of all things; after realizing she hated pre-med. She's in her 30's, lives in liberal New York, a lesbian and a successful entertainer. I have to wonder how she would've turned out, had I done things the "right" an "moral" way. I would not allowed her to live on campus and I definitely would have preferred her to be a stay at home mom with a few children. You and Don have done an awesome job with your two girls. It's very admirable what they've lived from you two and I know they are and will contribute to society in very positive ways. The men they marry will be blessed men, for sure. God is good and has blessed y'all in many and mighty ways. Always in my prayers. Hugs and many more blessings...Alicia (south Texas homesteader)

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    1. Keep praying for your daughter. People have turned their lives around in amazing ways with God's help.

      - Patrice

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    2. I'm genuinely curious, not trying to insult you, but if your daughter is "successful" as you say, and if she is happy, why can't you simply be happy for her? Why do you insist on complaining about her for hundreds of anonymous strangers to hear? That's not how I treat my daughters, even if I don't agree with everything they do.

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    3. I didn't read her comment as a complaint. It read as a concerned parent, and she is anonymous. This is a good forum for advice of all kinds, not just homesteading or prepper advice and information. We're here for each other. I refer to the regular commenters as my "stranger-friends." (As in strangers who are friends, not weird friends.) I have never met these people, but they are here to give me advice and information. I can take it or leave it as I see fit.

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    4. Thank you Patrice. You're right, with God's help she can repent and come to the realization that she needs to turn her life around. No, Anonymous, I'm not insulted. I know what I know and my daughter may be successful to the world or her peers. I'm not complaining about her. I'm stating how important homeschooling is and how bad her experience was at a overrated university that I regret encouraging her to go. I love my daughter very much and she knows that. She also knows that she can never bring her "girlfriend" to our home for dinner or anything, to feel like we approve or accept that way of life. Love the sinner, and hate the sin. She's confused and needs Jesus. Hopefully she repents before it's too late. God is good and merciful.

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  21. I think it is telling that one negative commentator considers older daughter's choice of being an au pair says she is not a "success". Just like being a stay at home mom, her job is critical in shaping the lives of these children. Some measure success by having a fulfilling career of choice rather than making big bucks nnd the stress that it often entails. I am a public school teacher who has witnessed the best and worst of homeschooling. If parents are conscientious in their curriculum it can be the best there is.

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  22. I did not homeschool my daughters, and thankfully the school district was excellent (with the exception of "new math" in the 1990s). However, I insisted on a Christian college because I wanted their faith built up instead of ripped apart. That was worth every penny. They met their spouses and made close friends there, their faith increased and both are doing very well. The older daughter and her husband were missionaries for 5 years in Europe, and they now homeschool their 4 wonderful children. The younger daughter is an airline pilot (Letourneau University has their own fleet of planes) and has a toddler and infant. In today's climate with common core, the liberal social engineering, etc. home schooling is the only logical choice. If I was a young mother today, I'd definitely educate at home.

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  23. Whenever I hear people make that claim about home schoolers, I ask for examples and don't get any.
    I have known many home schooled children as adults and they are universally intelligent, kind, and well spoken. I was public schooled, however I was fortunate to attend a very good public school system, both excelling in academics and minimizing progressive agendas. We were encouraged to discuss opposing views, use primary sources, and covered contentious subjects as theories and open to debate, not set in stone like some schools do.

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  24. When my daughter was in public school, the school system in that town was exemplary. With one change in administrators the situation changed completely. Within a few years two excellent Christian schools opened with as many students as they wanted to enroll. The public school has one track for the really excellent students and one that teaches nothing at all. If a student is lucky and has parents who make enough noise, he or she can get tracked into the excellent group. If not there is little hope although they recently revived the trades programs which at least gives some hope.

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  25. The emphasis from some comments seem to be the homeschooled lack what the "world" deems important and, therefore, those whom hold that opinion have no understanding of what is actually priceless and worth more than money and fame. Most homeschool families have dofferent values than what the world holds dear.

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