Schwarzenegger will fight for home schools

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger finally remembered that he is a Republican, at least in one regard. “Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger called Friday for the reversal of a recent appellate court decision banning parents from educating their children at home if they lack a teaching credential. If the state Supreme Court fails to act, the governor vowed to push through legislation guaranteeing families’ right to home school,” according to the L.A. Times.

I don’t know where this court got the idea that home schools are a detriment to education. Generally home schooled kids are far ahead of their public school peers. Besides, many school districts are awash with uncredentialed teachers who are teaching on emergency credentials. And home schools don’t take money away from the public. They do rely on local public schools for textbooks and support, but that’s it.

My sister home schools her kids. The program is overseen by a local public school. She is regularly advised by credentialed teachers. That seems reasonable to me. My nieces and nephews are all very bright.

It is my understanding that some home schools are not overseen by local public schools. Perhaps the Governor can insist that they all do so. Or that they ally with a local private school. That would increase accountability and oversight to a certain extent.

At any rate, Schwarzenegger got it right this time. “Every California child deserves a quality education, and parents should have the right to decide what’s best for their children,” Schwarzenegger said in response to the ruling, which said children educated at home must be taught by a credentialed teacher. (San Francisco Chronicle)

Another alternative would be to give back tax money to families who are home schooling so they can hire a tutor. They are not using the tax money for public school, so why not let them use it elsewhere?

The O.C. Register published an editorial today decrying the move by a court to outlaw home schools. Their editorial also had some ideas for our state education bureaucracy, “It might help calm the nerves of home-schooling parents if he sent a letter to school districts asking them to be equally respectful of that increasingly popular and successful education movement.” Home-schoolers have understandably been reluctant to encourage the Democratic-controlled Legislature, with its alliances with the California Teachers Association, to consider a legislative fix, but there’s no reason not to pursue a “right to home-school” initiative.”

At any rate, I do hope that Schwarzenegger will do everything possible to help home schoolers, and I hope the State Legislature will back him. Education in California is in trouble, but the trouble doesn’t begin with our home schools.

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"Admin" is just editors Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, or Ryan Cantor sharing something that they mostly didn't write themselves, but think you should see. Before December 2010, "Admin" may have been former blog owner Art Pedroza.