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Topic : 11/24 Great School Debate

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Created on : Friday, November 17, 2006, 12:57:50 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
Parents want the best for their children, but what’s the best way to educate them? Dr. Phil’s guests face off in a debate about whether to school, homeschool or unschool. Dana and her husband, Joe, call themselves radical unschoolers. They say education happens as a side effect of life, and they don’t believe in tests, curriculums or grades. Are their three kids learning what they need to know? Then, RaeAnn says public schools are death traps and wants to homeschool her children. Her husband, Steve, says their kids are safer at school than they are at home. Can this couple reach a compromise? Plus, Nicole feels like an outcast at 26. She says she hated being homeschooled, and couldn’t relate to other kids. Share your thoughts here.

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November 18, 2006, 5:52 pm CST

From a Home School Teacher/Parent

I have two kids I home school (6th and 9th grade). One of my children has High-Functioing Autism and Bipolar and the other is a math/science whiz which Public School tests to show.
We chose to stop Public school because my district was failing (not even trying to teach) my youngest with Autism. Teachers just stick her in a room by herself all day or told me to pick her up because they had no clue what to do with her (their words not mine). I now home school both because it's me choice and I could not stand to fight the schools or see my children pushed aside any longer. Not all schools systems are the same. I WISH they could go to Public school...but it's not a choice right now.

#1) I do not think any parent should home school unless they have an education of at least a high-school level. I say this, as a college educated person,. because you can't teach what you don't know. My pet peeve is people talking about things they no NOTHING about.

#2 I teach my children using curriculum, that I picked from thousands, to give them the best education possible. You don't have to spend and arm and a leg for this either. I have curriculum that uses weekly/quarterly test, 180 days of instruction, up-to-date information, and one that requires my kids to think.

#3 I base my kids classes in high school on what the Public School requires so they can get into a good college.

#4 We live in a college town and ALL three said they take home schooled children. All I need to do is have a transcript made out, give them classes they require on a high school transcript, and have them take an SAT/ACT.

#5 I belong to (Home School Legal Defence Assisiation) they give you all the tips and tools needed to make your child's education the nest it can be (special needs and all) AND they defend our rights as well as educate the rest of the world about home schooling (squashing myths and pre-judgments)

#6 My kids make A's, B's, and C' like all other kids.....if I gave them all A's for nothing...well ACT/SAT would proove I did not; I am just as hard as my teachers were on me.

#7 We teach out children to be individuals and not act like everyone else. We socialize them from church, clubs like 4H and Girls Scouts, getting an after school job, or voluteering somewhere.

#8 My child will be able to pay for college with Stafford loans, Pell grants, their parent's help, AND scholorships.

Please do not knowck home schoolers unless you know ALL the facts.
November 18, 2006, 6:32 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

To Homeschool or not to Homeschool, that is the question.

I think if you are educated in the REALITY of Homeschooling, and you have the patience, time and energy for it, Great for you, power to you.

If you can afford a private school setting that you are comfortable with and has the standards you wish for your child, again Power to you.

But for the great unwashed masses, there is the much maligned public school system.  The overworked underpaid teachers, the administration that thinks they can get away with sub standard education for our children, and the parents who are the FIRST to sue if little Johnny is kicked off the almighty Hockey or Football team because he hasn't kept up a "B" average as per the agreement.

So who votes for the schoolboard members ? Who signs the paychecks of the teachers administrators and the best yet POLITICIANS ?

That would be the MASSES, yes that would be us.  That being said, why do we put up with our schools being in the state they are in ? COMPLACENCY plain and simple, very few want to do ANYTHING until a tradgedy or travisty happens then we want to blame everyone else for the problems except ourselves.

For heavens sake people, stop with the excuses already, I work full time and still find the time to volunteer at my kids' high school and tutor children with reading and basic English.  If there is a problem ( and with a child who is ADHD and Dyslexic there have been many ), I have no problem with going to see the teachers, or principal to try to find a solution, I haven't been intimidated by School Board officials, when a teacher calls with a concern I am one of those rare parents it seems that will not say " My little Johnny wouldn't do that ", or " well you hurt little Johnny's feelings "  YOUR little Johnny is only ONE of 30 kids in that class.  I KNOW what my little darlings are capable of.

Yes, there are teachers that shouldn't be teaching and they are protected by the Unions ( at least here in Canada they are ) but again, we the TAXPAYERS should be fighting for or schools and our kids, And the boards should be held accountable.

If you are one of those parents making the lame EXCUSES for not being involved, then shut up and stop complaining when Little Johnny can't read or add one and one and get two, if you are one of those parents that thinks your child should not be penalized for not keeping their grade point average by being kicked off the sports teams, then don't whine when your kids graduates illiterate and unable to support themselves, and please if you do not attend your High Schooler's Parent Teacher nights, then don't bitch about the teacher.

Sorry to anyone named John or Johnny, I don't want to insult you, just a generic name to use and as a Public School educated person, I am proud to say I can string together a simple sentence and I am Literate Thank You.


November 18, 2006, 6:47 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: movillecowgirl

For the people who seem to think that homeschoolers are "behind" or "under-socialized", I was homeschooled pretty much my whole life.  I was active in a homeschool co-op which many NON-homeschoolers do not realize are in almost every city, took piano for 9+years, took horsemanship lessons (and showed!), took Tae Kwon Do, the list just goes ON AND ON.  Not only this, we went through an accredited school, where I graduated with a 3.87 GPA.

When I went to college, I did so well on my placement test that I tested out of math AND English, and at graduation, I was the top of my class (in my field).

Why was I homeschooled?  Because the public school could not keep up with me and did not want to "deal" with me due to my ADHD which caused me to be extremely bored.  Our public schools are NOT for everyone, and I know that I would not have gone as far as I did if I would have continued down the destructive public school path. 


P.S.  Two of my younger sisters graduated public high school (this is one of the best public schools in NE Texas!) in all HONORS classes and could not tell you the difference between a noun and a verb nor could they do advanced math.  Yes, public schools at thier finest there!

 Wow! The public school I went to had  College credit courses. Also, the teachers were not afraid to give out F's and hold you back. They also had Gifted classes. I don't remember any ADHD kids. The teachers worked hard to keep kids stimulated and interested. If you weren't "with the rest of the class" they wanted to know why. Often, it was because a child was bored, or learned differently. So, the teacher's would move the kid to a class better suited to him/her. I was in 5th grade reading in 2nd grade and by the time I was in 6th I was working on my own in the back of the room.

I guess, it all depends on the district and the teachers

November 18, 2006, 7:19 pm CST


I think it is rather distressing the extremeness that is implied in the show for Nov. 24th.  I can imagine that there are many homeschool families that do not do their jobs in the way of educating their children.  But I believe that the ration of those families to those who actually do teach their children is probably no different as compared to the same children that attend public or private schools.


I can assure you that a homeschooling family who are doing what they are supposed to be doing (even in the case of unschooling) have not choosen the lazy way out.  Teaching is a full time job, no matter who is doing it.  Now try to teach two or more curriculums/unit studies/or be organized enough to teach your multiple children's spontinaity of interests and you will find you have little time to clean, shop, or even get your hair cut. 


I also believed (before deciding to homeschool) that every school, teacher, or school administrator and the parents were the key to a child's education.  If a child had active parents and teachers, then the child would learn.  There was no such thing as a bad school.  I believed this until we moved to our new location.  Teachers on EVERY level would not talk with me, answer notes or return phone calls.  The principal told me she did not deal with certain grade levels.  NO ONE attended my preschooler's IEP meeting that was scheduled at the school staff's confinence.  My children told me that teachers tore up art projects, screamed at children, and there were fights daily.  Perhaps they over exaggerating?  I have no idea, I couldn't get ANYONE at the school to respond. 


So I pulled them from the school.  I attempted to wait for the school to notice my children were not attending.  Worried about getting a truancy report, I called the school after 4 days to inform them I was applying to the state to do a homestudy program.  They asked me if I was coming in early to pick them up and take them home early for the day???


Yes on most levels in this country, our children are blessed with the free education they recieve.  But I too am blessed with having a strong desire to learn and an even stronger desire to give my children the best.  NO ONE will ever convince me that the public school district where we currently live is the best learning environment for my children. 


Do I believe that all public schools fall into this catagory?  NO  I have members within my family and friends whom are educators.  I have adored some of my children's teachers in the past.  Some have truely helped my children overcome some personal issues.  But on the other hand,  I am very glad I have the option to bring my children home. 


I truely believe that this show will do a great disservice to the many people in this country who not only have serious reasons to decide to homeschool, but who are doing great jobs at it. 


November 18, 2006, 7:22 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: manda7

I never said I was better than anyone, I said that I studied and worked hard, but thank you for putting those words in my mouth.  I would like to point out how you use phrases like "those of us paying for our children's education" and ask which of us really has the better than thou attitude you accused me of.    It is wonderful that you can afford to send your daughter to public school, I was not so fortunate.  Children can get an excellent education in private school, but does it prepare them for real life where they will have to make the best of what the get and deal with all kinds of people.  You seem to be one of the growing trend today that is not comfortable when someone says something which holds people responsible for their own actions.

I realize that some people try hard and still have trouble. However, I am referring to the vast numbers of students who are failing or dropping out.  Many of them decide they just don't want to do their work or even don't want to go to school any more, and that is their fault not the public education system.  You can get a good education in public school, but you have to reach out and grab it, whether you do so is up to you. As for learning disabilities, the public school system has special education programs for those students.  I don't think that public education is a wonderful, flawless thing, It definitely has it's faults, but that is not an excuse to do poorly.

You say that private schools do not "prepare them (kids) for real life where they will have to make the best of what the get and deal with all kinds of people".  How do you know what every private school is like and what cultures/races go there?  Children interact with kids and adults OUTSIDE of school which is a fact that some seem to forget.

"I am referring to the vast numbers of students who are failing or dropping out."

Yes, but WHY are they dropping out/failing?  This is NOTHING new.  Why do you think this is an "our generation" thing?  People for CENTURIES (well those lucky enough 100 years ago to go to school to learn) have been failing and dropping out.  Look at the schools in Texas.  EVERYTHING is geared towards the TOS test for EVERY grade EVERY year.  Wouldn't you get bored if all you were "taught" if you were actually paying attention was going to be on a test?  Where is the joy in learning?

"You can get a good education in public school"

Yes, but many do not.  I left Texas after being homeschooled and went to a SUNY school where many of the students there were the "top" of thier class and tested "high" on thier final tests.  Why is it being after being homeschooled I was helping these kids write basic english papers do Math 101 (if they were even that far advanced), and yet, I was in Honors Freshman English (by choice.. I tested out of English) and I took no math as I also tested out of it?

I can tell you why.  Because my parents saw what the public schools did, and decided to homeschool me.  Could my parents have done that with me staying in a public school.  You betcha!  They would have been doing the SAME thing as homeschooling though in making sure I understood everything going on and teaching me BEYOND what the "text" does. 

Parents who are not involved in thier child's education (I'm not talking about ragging your kids to get thier school done, watching thier grades, or joining PTA!) should not be gripping about parents who homeschool thier kids and help them to learn.  I know several wonderful, involved parents of public school kids, and they are there for EVERY aspect and are constantly talking to thier childrens' teachers about how to encourage them and expand thier minds.

All that being said, i believe that a parent essentially has to make the BEST decission for thier child(ren) whether that be going to a public or private school, homeschooling, or unschooling (which I have seen successful and very UNSUCCESSFUL cases of).  Each child is different.

November 18, 2006, 8:16 pm CST

home schooling

I would like to say I am 26 years old and grad from high school in public school. I know what school was like for me, some teachers care some don't. I got pushed a long even if I did not know my stuff! I remember what I was doing in school right along with all my friends and I know what others where doing as well. When parents are not around kids do some pretty bad stuff and some get teased because they are not doing the "cool" thing. I had my daughter at a young are because of peer pressure I fell into. Yeah it was my choice but you will be amazed at what that much pressure can do even to an adult! I chose not to put my child in public school for many reasons. She went to a very good private Christian school and even there we had good and bad teachers. God tell us to train our kids up they way they should go, how can you do that if your not around eight hours of their day? Plus public schools teach about evolution but not Christianity. I think if they can teach one they should teach the other. I pulled my daughter from school in first grade when her teacher said she needed medication for ADHD. During this time my husband was deployed with the US Army she still got no mercy even in tough times. All I know is no one can love your child like you do! Most parents want the best for their children so if homeschooling is what they feel is best let them be. They are not raising your kids. We have been homeschooling now for 2 years with my children both thriving and learning so much more than they did in school even different lang at a young age how many public school kids do that?Top collages are now recruiting home schooled children because they are well behaved and have a love of learning! Unlike kids in school stuck behind a desk most of their life who want to break free! I also wanna enjoy my children thats why I had them. Most people don't like homeschooling for one reason its different and today if you are different you are not normal in most peoples eyes. God is good and will provide no matter how the show gos we know homeschooling is a much better alternative than any other school out there! I give big props to all moms and dads who home school its a hard job but worth every second. You wont look back and say man I wished I spent more time on my kids or I should not have let so many others raise my kids that was my job and I didn't do it!
November 18, 2006, 9:54 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Here's my take on the entire homeschooling debate.


Why on earth in many many states simply by being an egg or sperm donor qualifies one as a teacher?


Shouldn't there be nation wide criteria for such and undertaking??? 


I'm NOT against homeschooling, yet I do shudder at the fact, that many who are NOT educated themselves are so freely given this option.


I think that anyone, ( parent, guardian etc) that chooses to become a home school educator SHOULD be tested, and or / take a teachers college final examination and go from there.


I understand that people have many issues with teachers, hey they are with our children more oft than we are. 90% of teachers are doing a bang up job......the 10% (likely less) are who end up in the media.  Ratings people.........gotta sell everything! 


Regardless, those teachers are qualified and EDUCATED people that have an extensive education in teaching.


It's just nuts too me that some grade 10 drop out can home school just because they wanna, because they gave birth or delivered the squiggly wiggly to the egg???


If I were an educator, I would want to shake a few people by the shoulders and say " hey so you failed out of school miserably, yet you feel you can explain Algebra, Physics, English and grammar..........mathematics........all the sciences.........


Well that's just insane to me!


Of course I fully understand that there may be many many competent parents that would be a benefit to homeschooling their child.


Yet without regulations and country wide standards I find the idea as a whole quite frightening.  Really that is really blowing my mind.  It's like this...........


have a baby, and decide that even though I'm a drop out that can't spell, nor multiply I can homeschool!!!  REALLY there should be some standards put in place.


And although I am not in the teaching profession...........I say without certain standards and criteria in place it is an absolute SLAP IN THE FACE to the teaching profession.






November 18, 2006, 11:13 pm CST


Quote From: purplepenny

"I will agree that homeschooling is not for everyone, it is only for people who truly care about the education their child recieves."

Wow..that's a bold statement. I know many people whose kids are in public school and they do care deeply about their educations.
I think you all are misunderstanding this statement.  I took it to mean that the only people who should homeschool are people who truly care about the education of their children.  People who won't make the commitment should not homeschool.  The poster never said that the only people who care about their child's education are homeschoolers.
November 19, 2006, 12:35 am CST

11/24 Great School Debate

This kind of topic is introduced, I think, solely to get people to argue. Trying to prove which type of education is right for any or all children is like telling how ALL parents should parent. It's impossible because people and their families are so dynamic that one 'thing' (whether it be the type of education, how you parent, whether to breastfed, etc) is a decision for that set of parents for their own children and circumstances/ beliefs/ priorities. And the debate, more or less, is trying to prove that one decision is better than the other. How can that be when what is best for one person, will not be the best for the next?


Homeschooling or public / private schooling isn't perfect or horrible. There are pros and cons with each. Thank our government for giving us the freedom to decide for ourselves just which option we'd like to pursue for our families.



November 19, 2006, 2:03 am CST


I find that many people, like myself in the beginning, simply do not understand homeschooling and as such form a negative opinion. However, through educating ourselves on matters we lead the way to understanding.

We have been homeschooling our children for about four years. We homeschool for several reasons but here are a few main points:


1. Homeschool students academically outperform their public school counterparts.

The relationship between median composite scaled scores for home school students, Catholic/Private school students, and the nation is shown in the Figure 1. At each grade level, the test performance of Catholic/Private school students is above the national performance levels, especially in the higher grade levels. Also at each grade level, the performance of home school students is above the performance levels of students enrolled in Catholic/Private schools. The differences between these groups are considerable. For example, the median score for 7th graders nationwide is 239; for Catholic/Private school students the median is 257; for home school students the median is 276. Another way to look at this chart is to examine the grades corresponding to a given composite score. A composite scale score of 250, for example, is typical of a home school student in Grade 6, a Catholic/Private school student in Grade 7 and students nationwide in the later stages of grade 8.


Figure 1. Academic Achievement of Home School,
Catholic/Private and the Nation's Students




2. Public school is a dangerous place to attend.
School-Related Violent Death Summary Data


School Year
Total Deaths
(From 8/1/06 to present)


3. Socialization
(psychology) The process whereby a child learns to get along with and to behave similarly to other people in the group, largely through imitation as well as group pressure.


Remember when your mother warned you, Those kids are bad news. You need to stop spending time with them.? Remember also how your mother really had little control over who you associcated with outside of the home?
As an adult can you understand why your mother warned you?


As a homeschool mother I can control who and where my children interract and therefor emulate.

Yes, one day all children will come across a contrary individual and need to stand their own ground. For this reason, we believe our children should be prepared for this instance before they are introduced to the situation.


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