I discovered Penelope Trunk this year. I’m slow, I know. I don’t agree with lots of things she says but boy, she says things brilliantly. There is no inhibition in her writing or thinking.
I was intrigued to see Penelope Trunk interviewed on The Pioneer Woman earlier this month. She’s brilliant. Have I mentioned that?
What most intrigued me was that she called me a liar: “The biggest lie homeschoolers tell is that it’s not right for everyone. School is totally ineffective. We all know our schools are broken. We are trying to fix them. So the kids in the schools are guinea pigs.”
Many schools are broken. But I must disagree with Ms. Trunk; homeschooling isn’t for everyone. It isn’t for the abandoned wife or single mom who cannot pay her rent without working full-time outside of the home. It isn’t for families who can–and want to–access free private eduction because one of the family members works at the private school. It isn’t for parents with substance abuse issues. It isn’t for families in which the children look forward to going to school–to escape their home life. It isn’t for families who don’t believe it’s for them and have no passion for educating their children in a relationship-based, family setting. It isn’t for families that think it through and peacefully decide that another schooling option is the best choice for their child, their family, their futures.
And I’m not going to lie and say that it is.
It can be for anyone if they want it enough. Consider…even illiterate parents have taught their children to be studious, hard workers (Dr. Ben Carson is the example here).
And for us ordinary people? Can impatient parents learn to semi-patiently teach phonetic rules and times tables? Well, I seem to be proving that it can be done.
But homeschooling isn’t for everyone…and I’m not going to ruin any relationship in my life by insisting that it is.