Why Home Schooling Is Best: How a Teacher Became a Homeschooling Advocate

Having taught preschool and kindergarten for over 12 years,  I never in a million years thought I would become a homeschooling advocate.  After all, I had provided a stimulating environment for my students that centered on hands-on learning, social interaction, play, open-ended art, and lots of good books. Kids loved coming to my classroom and I loved teaching them. But, my feelings began to change when I had a boy with Down's Syndrome enter my class and along with him came his whole team of early intervention specialists and along with them came the weight of an entire overblown and broken down public school system.


I was teaching at a small private preschool where I had sent my son. I thought very highly of its owner, who was also a teacher at the school, and readily accepted a position when she offered it to me. Teaching there was the most joyous experience of my life...until "the team" arrived. Then I saw firsthand the shameless waste in our public school system and how children in need don't get the services they deserve. Most significantly, I saw how bureaucrats can take over a small private preschool, overthrow its owner, toss her curriculum, and destroy everything that was beautiful about it. Why would they do this? This answer is quite simple: to keep their cushy jobs and keep funds flowing to their program.

The Federal Government's Role Grows Bigger in Early Childhood Education But the Goals Get Narrower

My experience is not an isolated one. The federal government is becoming increasingly involved in early childhood education -- both at public and private schools. Here are some facts:

  • There's a push to create universal government-run child care for all three-and four-year-olds. This huge expansion in government will lead to a one-size-fits-all system that will hurt private preschools, in-home child care, Waldorf, Montessori, and other alternatives.
  • The federal government's involvement in preschools has already resulted in standardized testing and an emphasis on "academic rigor." The voices of experts in early childhood education have been silenced while bureaucrats call the shots. Now young children are supposed to master a narrow set of skills rather than develop a broad love for learning.
  • The federal government has run Head Start, a program for disadvantaged children, for over 5 decades. Their own research shows that it's been a costly failure with kids leaving the program no better off than when they entered.

You Can't Fight City Hall, but You Can Give

Your Kids a Superior Education

If you've ever tried to battle Big Government like I have, you know it's a David versus Goliath situation and sometimes it's better to just take your marbles and go home. This is especially true when it concerns what matters most to you in life: your children. Homeschooling gives you the glorious opportunity to leave the craziness of the bureaucratic educational system behind and focus on the uniqueness of your kids. 

They will learn SO much more with you one-on-one than they'll ever learn in a large group of kids. I can't begin to tell you how much I was forced to dumb-down the preschool curriculum to suit "the team." They ordered me to stop reading books to the class and tell flannel stories instead. They insisted I not ask questions that required critical thinking. I could not longer do small group projects in math and language arts because I needed to constantly watch the boy so he wouldn't hit and shove the other kids. He desperately needed speech and occupational therapies but got neither.  

Some parents, those in the politically correct crowd, thought it was "cute" to have this child (who was operating at the developmental level of a 2-year-old) in the same class with their 5-year-olds. Let me assure you, there was nothing cute about it. They were wasting their money and their kids were not learning nearly as much as they should have been. What was once a charming little preschool got turned into just another government-run debacle. I left and so have other experienced preschool teachers across the country. We're no longer educators but homeschooling advocates! 

A champion of  young children, Nancy Carlsson-Paige, talks about the importance of play.

Defending the Early Years is an organization that advocates for kids to be kids. It criticizes the demand for academic rigor in the early years and pushes for more play and creativity.

This book by Nancy Carlsson-Paige is a must-have for parents of young children. The evidence is overwhelming that play is the most effective way youngsters learn.

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