Monday, October 20, 2014

Never Let A Crisis Go To Waste

They're shameless, they really are:
In Connecticut, Governor Dannel P. Malloy’s Sandy Hook Advisory Commission has returned a curious and controversial draft recommendation: the state should increase its oversight of homeschooled children with emotional or behavioral challenges. The proposal has outraged the state’s homeschoolers, who, like homeschoolers everywhere, are keenly aware of their sometimes conditional freedoms. In Connecticut, as elsewhere, the law allows parents to homeschool if they choose. But the practice has always been viewed as threatening by left-wing academics, social architects, and teachers’ unions—all well represented on Malloy’s 16-member panel. Sadly, this is only the most recent assault on the rights of Connecticut homeschoolers.
Lanza didn't shoot people because he was homeschooled, he shot them because he was crazy.  To single out homeschoolers like this, and to use that shooting as the reason for doing so, is only slightly less crazy than Lanza was.  It's also blatant manipulation of a tragedy for political gain, something that decent people everywhere should decry.


PeggyU said...

Lanza spent virtually all of his educational career in public and private schools and was only pulled out and home schooled when it became apparent that he could not function. He was home schooled during his final year, but even then took online public school classes and graduated from Newtown High School.

allen (in Michigan) said...

I commented on this over at City Journal but in short, great idea!

To take a trip down memory lane, in the mid-nineties the number of homeschoolers was surging as faith in the public education system fell off a cliff. Homeschooling was taken up by young, white, non-religious parents in significant numbers. A demographic quite different from the traditional homeschooling parents.

Naturally, the change drew the attention of a number of petty tyrants who sought to bring this unseemly phenomenon under the control of the appropriate authorities. The targeted parents went from zero to "you've been served" in a shockingly short length of time setting those petty tyrants back on their heels before they knew what had hit them.

The parents organized into coherent, effective groups that packed school board meetings and legislative committee hearings. The sought out the press and showered them with press releases about rallies. They hired lawyers and got injunctions. They raised money, identified allies and opponents and dealt with each accordingly. They went from being a random assortment of individuals to the sort of politically-savvy pressure group that causes their political opponents to frantically "clarify" their comments since being run over by a bulldozer will really ruin your day.

But as every teacher knows lessons have to be periodically reinforced and it has apparently been long enough that officialdom's forgotten that lesson taught twenty or so year ago.

maxutils said...

It should be noted ... and maybe not in the Lanza case, as his mother actually tried to get him mental health care (should have kept her guns locked up, though) ... I think it's highly more likely that a student with mental illness or learning disability will have that recognized in a traditional school setting ... and public, at least, he's more likely to get extra help and/or care ...Agree with Peggy U. Lanza definitely had problems ... and his school wasn't able to help, which is a shame ... but had he been home schooled all of his life? I think it's entirely possible that his problems would have gone unrecognized. It's one thing for a parent to try to be a teacher, and be knowledgeable about all the subjects (which, frankly, I find to be ludicrous) but to also be able to recognize deeper issues, when the student is not being exposed to societal norms or competition is asking a lot.