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BreakPoint: Homeschooling, Worldview, and the State


Beyond the crazy guilt-by-association stories, the discuss over homeschooling boils down to this: Who is obliged for the kids’ education?

Hi, I’m John, and my wife and we homeschool the children.

I wish in the future that’s not how we’ll have to deliver ourselves as a arrange of open warning to others. But make no mistake, the phenomenally successful homeschool transformation does have its enemies: enemies constantly operative to spin open opinion against relatives who have selected this way to pursue their children’s education.

A new and -obscene instance comes from the New Republic, where author Sarah Jones is using the terrible story of the woe inflicted by David and Louise Turpin on their 13 children as a means to attack the thought of homeschooling itself. Under the inflammatory headline, “The Turpins Won’t Be the Last: How Lax Homeschooling Laws Enable Child Abusers,” Jones argues that this offensive case is representative of a incomparable trend of child abuse enabled by the leisure to homeschool.

Now folks, to use a word we introduced a few weeks ago on BreakPoint, this is nutpicking nonsense. There’s zero elemental to homeschooling that creates abuse. Abuse happens in all educational, parenting, ecclesial, and for that matter, informative contexts.


My BreakPoint co-worker Shane Morris, a product of homeschooling himself, tackled Jones’ cheap-shot essay in a sharp-elbowed but required response to Jones at The Federalist. I’ll couple you to it at BreakPoint.org. Shane writes, “In [Jones’s] mind, the fact that some homeschooling relatives abuse their children is explanation that something is wrong with magnanimous homeschooling laws. But we competence also request her line of logic to open schools.

“In New Jersey,” he continues, “93 teachers pleaded guilty to passionate relations with students from 2003 to 2013.” And “Reuters reports that in 2014, ‘almost 800 school employees were prosecuted for passionate assault.’”

It would be absurd to interpretation from these statistics that open and private schools “assist abusers.” No one thinks that way.

But that’s accurately what Jones does to homeschooling, when she and other proponents for increasing law worry that what they call the “state of deregulation” “actually assists violent parents.”

Not surprisingly, Jones also questions the motives of groups like the Homeschooling Legal Defense Association and downplays the considerable educational feat displayed by homeschooled children, as good as the investigate “that shows homeschooling produces, on average, better-educated and some-more college-ready students.”

There are, as Shane writes, good schools and bad schools—schools that furnish college-ready students by the boatload, and there are schools that connoisseur kids who can hardly read. In the same way, there are relatives next at homeschooling and there are those that aren’t. If you’re not job for the state to desert open preparation for the bad apples, you’ve got no business job for a crackdown on homeschooling since of the immorality deeds of these two California parents.

In the end, we consider Shane is right: “On a some-more elemental level, those who wish to place additional barriers in the way of homeschooling families have a opposite worldview. They see the state, not the family, as eventually obliged for rearing and educating children.” That’s a worldview that Christians don’t share, no matter how we select to hoop the own children’s education.

Kids go to God, who entrusts them to parents. Whether relatives select homeschooling, private education, licence schools, open education, or like many of us  do some alliance and multiple of those options, the bottom line is, kids don’t go to the government.

And that means at slightest two things for us. First, Christian relatives ought to take that shortcoming just as seriously and intentionally as it sounds. And second, we should call out the distortion that abuse—which sadly happens everywhere—discredits an educational choice that’s sanctified over a million-and-a-half kids.  Instead we should ask what’s broken in the multitude that’s making abuse so common.


Homeschooling, Worldview, and the State: Who’s Responsible?

Click here to review Shane Morris’s mainstay in The Federalist, “Don’t Blame Homeschooling for Child Abuse Cases Like the Turpins’.”

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