March 26, 2008

do parents need to be ‘certified’?

Posted in education, parenting tagged , at 3:38 pm by weiszguy

This editorial from the Wall Street Journal addresses the recent debacle out of California: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120614130694756089.html

Do parents really need to be certified to teach their children?  What would a parent need to do to get certified?  Show mastery of educational history?  Understand classroom management techniques?  Attend seminars designed to show teachers how to teach homosexuality?

I’m not a certified teacher, but I can read, which means I don’t have any trouble following any of the thousands of pre-planned lessons available to anyone who wants them.  I also love my children, which means I care enough to make sure they know how to be respectful, how to be honest, and how to stand up for what is right, in addition to the 3 Rs.

The California case involves a couple who allegedly abused their children.  If true, that is a shame.  There are laws against child abuse, and when abuse occurs the children ought to be helped and the parents dealt with.  But remind me what this has to do with homeschooling?

There is no cause and effect relationship between school and child abuse. Any parent, regardless of the educational status of their children, can abuse their children.  Using the logic of the California court, we could just as easily pull all abused children out of public school, because, who knows, maybe the school is causing the parents to abuse the children?  And let us not forget, many, many children are abused by their public school teachers.  Why don’t we require those children to be removed from the schools?

Like the writer of the WSJ editorial, I would like to know where the presidential candidates stand on homeschooling.  Specifically, do they believe parents need to be certified in order to teach their children?  The answer to that one question would go a long way toward helping me make up my mind in November.

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