Sunday, 7 March 2010
Home education-the next generation
Many home educating parents are not over keen on schools because of their own experiences there. This has been a trend in British home education right from the very start; Joy Baker in the fifties did not send her children to school largely due to the wretched time she herself had at school. I'm not at all sure how good a motive this is for home education, but it certainly seems to be common enough. One cannot help but wonder what those who are currently being taught at home will make of it all when they are themselves grown up and have children of their own. Will they too become home educators in their turn?
The reason that I am curious about the above question is partly because of the way that we all determine to avoid at all costs the mistakes which our own parents made when rearing their children. Sometimes, this can lead to an over-reaction. If our parents were harsh; we are over relaxed about discipline. Often, the children who have been dragged to church become atheists and so on. Children whose parents drank heavily and smoked sometimes become fanatical non smoking teetotallers. This might well account in part for the reason that so many home educating parents seem a little bitter about their childhood experiences of school. Reading what a lot of home educators say, they seem to have a deal of resentment about their childhoods; perhaps they think that their own parents should have protected them by taking them out of school. Will this phenomenon result in parents who were themselves home educated, sending their children to really strict and formal schools in twenty years or so?
There have been a few high profile cases of children who were home educated being a little bitter about it in later life. Aaron Stern's daughter, she of the so called "Edith project" , was outspoken against home education as an adult. Ruth Lawrence has also made it plain that she would not have wanted to home educate her own children. There have been other examples. Does anybody know of any home educated person who has gone on to home educate her own children? We are reaching the stage at which there should soon be quite a few people in their twenties and thirties who were taught at home and now have children. Will home education become a family tradition for some, as sending a child to a particular school is now in some families?