Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Beware of Home School Demons

(This article was posted on another mailing list today and I thought I would share it with my faithful blog readers. This one really hits home, as my wife and I have been homeschooling our children now for seventeen years. We have been guilty of some of these areas from time to time and have had to repent and get back on track!!! This is a good checklist to make sure we keep the proper attitude in this area of educating our children.)

Much has been said in the debate on education about public schooling versus home schooling. The issues range from who is really responsible for the education of children, who can best educate them, and the problem of "socialization" for home schooled children, to name a few. From my experience, the socialization that takes place in school settings is usually a major problem itself.

Concerning the public government school system, much has been said about revamping, restructuring and renewing the system. All such talk is nonsense and misses the mark. To speak of fixing the system is tantamount to arguing over how to repair a watch that has been smashed under the tire of an eighteen wheeler. Replacement is the issue, not repair. And that is exactly what home schooling parents have chosen to do. Replace the broken government school system with an effective system known as home education. Thank God for the freedom parents have to exercise the God given responsibility to educate their children.

However, home education in itself does not guarantee quality education. The quality of education provided in the home will be determined by the education of the parents(to a degree) and their commitment(key word) to providing a God centered, holistic education with a true biblical world view, characterized by consistency. I believe home education is superior to the God-excluding government program offered in the current system. I am a home school parent, so naturally you would not expect me to say anything different. With that said, however, let's be realistic about some "demons" that can appear and hinder or destroy the effectiveness of home education.
  1. Lack of commitment. No one should begin home education unless they are absolutely committed to following through. It may seem like an easy alternative to some who pull their children from school because they are failing. But if they are failing in a public school, and the cause of failure is rooted in lack of commitment from the parents to initially support and assist their children, it will only get worse in home education, because it requires serious dedication.
  2. Not enough structure. I notice a tendency among some home schooling parents to be too laid back. Since home education is not "formal" education (and why shouldn't it be) requirements are sometimes not tough enough (and this can depend of the parents), schedules are not followed, deadlines are not always met and curriculum not completed.
  3. Lack of accountability. If some deadlines are not met and some requirements not enforced, who is going to know? If a parent tends to be too laid back with not enough structure, always waiting for that "teachable moment", lack of accountability adds to the problem. Teachable moments are a reality and are great, but structure and accountability are "evils" that are necessary. Besides, we don't wait for "eatable" moments and depend on "sleepable" moments, but schedule them.
  4. Denial of reality. Though I believe some real learning disabilities exist, they are not near as common as the purveyors of Ritalin would have us believe. But there can be a tendency among home school parents to go in denial about a legitimate problem that may exist, thinking, hoping, and praying that home schooling in and of itself will effect the remedy. Home schooling is superior, but is not a cure-all, fix-all remedy for real processing problems, genuine cases of dyslexia, etc.
  5. Arrogance. Here is a demon that Satan can use in a subtle way. "Our home school kids are better than the heathen in public government schools"

Actually, home school kids have the same level of depravity as all kids. They are inherently no better than other kids, but certainly have a better opportunity for a superior God centered education and less exposure to ungodliness than kids in government and private so-called Christian schools. Perspective will help keep this demon at bay.

Joseph Harris

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think home schooling is fine and to rip it is not good.

8:10 PM  
Blogger Tammy C said...

I have always admired people who homeschool,but this post just confirms the reasons that I don NOT homeschool!!

11:08 AM  
Blogger Jim said...


I think home schooling is better than fine. It is GREAT and I am glad the Lord has allowed us to homeschool our six children for the past seventeen years.

Please re-read the article... this is a word of warning to homeschoolers to NOT have those negative attitudes in their heart and actions. If a homeschooling parent exhibits those traits, they need to be ripped!!!


A homeschooling parent that exhibits those attitudes and actions gives homeschooling a bad name. Apparently, you have seen that attitude in those the Lord has placed in your path. Let me assure you not all homeschoolers behave like that... that is why I posted the article of WARNING for those of us who do!!!

Thank you both for stopping by and commenting....

6:08 PM  
Blogger Sis. Julie said...

I'm so thankful that the Lord had us to pull our kids out of the public school system and to homeschool. Has it always been easy....NO!! Have I always done things the way I should have....NO!! But I can tell you that I was able to get back on track as y'all did and that God has enabled me (I couldn't do it without Him that is for sure) and helped me to school my children. My last two are about to graduate in a couple of months and it humbles me that He allowed me to be used to make that possible. Y'all have been a great testimony and example to me and the example y'all have set has helped me to not get discouraged. Afterall...I only had three to homeschool....y'all have six!! If Sis. Rachel can do it with the help of the Lord then I knew I could too!!! Thank you both for being such a help to me although I'm sure y'all didn't know you have been!!!

8:05 AM  

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