Click to: riverhouses.org/2020-05-research
On the third Tuesday of each month we post a quick roundup of some recent academic publications and news about homeschooling, offered for your interest. These are typically university research papers, and they may have a positive, negative, or neutral outlook on home education — and if they don’t seem appealing, just scroll on by. The title links generally point to the full text of each publication, which is often a printable pdf file. (Facebook readers should click to the attached blog post to find these links live.) In some cases, a paid subscription may be required to read the whole article. The article abstracts and introductions below are quoted in full whenever possible, without editing.
We have five items this month. The first is an interview with anti-homeschooling Harvard law professor Elizabeth Bartholet, whose work has received extensive media coverage in the last few weeks, most of it negative. The fifth item is just one of the many pro-homeschool responses to Bartholet that are now in circulation. (We first took note of Bartholet’s call for a “presumptive ban” on homeschooling in June of last year here at the River Houses, well before it attracted widespread public attention.)
In happier news, the third item below, Homeschooling and Libraries: New Solutions and Opportunities, is an edited volume of more than 20 chapters, all on how libraries can work more successfully with the homeschool community. Why not recommend it for purchase at your local library this month!
(1) A Warning on Homeschooling — E. Bartholet, interviewed by L. Mineo (2020)
Introduction: Nationally renowned child welfare expert Elizabeth Bartholet wants to see a radical transformation in homeschooling. In an article in the Arizona Law Review, “Homeschooling: Parent Rights Absolutism vs. Child Rights to Education & Protection,” she argues that the lack of regulation in the homeschooling system poses a threat to children and society. The Gazette sat down with Bartholet, the Morris Wasserstein Public Interest Professor of Law and faculty director of the Child Advocacy Program at Harvard Law School (HLS), to talk about the problems.
(2) A Qualitative Study of the Factors That Contribute to Successful Homeschool Graduates — D. Garlington (2020)
Introduction: The purpose of this study is to focus on attitudes/practices/techniques/strategies that appear in several different homeschooled families that could help point to a commonality that other parents could point to as a necessary factor for a successful homeschooled student. The sample consisted of 2 homeschooled families with 13 children who were taught in a homeschool environment. The study interviewed only the parents of the students. The data for this qualitative study consisted of a survey created by the researcher and interviews with the parents of two homeschool families. The parent survey asked parents questions about their classroom environment, attitudes about school, and methods of instruction used in their homes. The interviews took the results from the two surveys and went more in-depth to understand the responses that were given on the surveys. Results revealed that several practices and similar attitudes were reflected across the families interviewed that have positive effects on the students. The homeschooled students are positively impacted when parents take the time to get to know them and tailor education to fit their needs. Parents who allow their homeschooled children to have a say in their curriculum, and how they are taught, is an excellent way for parents to provide each student with equal opportunities to succeed in a homeschooling environment.
(3) Homeschooling and Libraries: New Solutions and Opportunities [Book] — V. Gubnitskaia & C. Smallwood, eds. (2020)
Publisher’s Introduction: As families are looking for better ways to educate their children, more and more of them are becoming interested and engaged in alternative ways of schooling that are different, separate, or opposite of the traditional classroom. Homeschooling has become ever more creative and varied as families create custom-tailored curricula, assignments, goals, and strategies that are best for each unique child. This presents a multitude of challenges and opportunities for information institutions, including public, academic, school, and special libraries. The need for librarians to help homeschool families become information and media literate is more important than ever.
Abstract: Global citizenship education (GCED) has moved to the forefront of U.S. education policy. The core tenets of GCED are knowledge, skills, behaviors, actions, attitudes, and values. Through these tenets, GCED strives to prepare students to be contributing members of society through making positive change. In this study, I examined the extent to which GCED was integrated in homeschooling education in eight families located in four Northeastern states, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
The findings derived from individual interviews and surveys with homeschooling parents and their adult children as well as document analysis demonstrate that seven of the eight homeschooling families who participated in this study favored GCED as an educational approach, with the primary focus on attaining GCED knowledge, skills, values, and attitudes. The one family, who did not favor the GCED educational approach, indicated that their educational focus was more on national citizenship not global citizenship. These findings have the potential to contribute to better understanding homeschooling as an educational approach and to broaden the research of GCED to include families who choose to homeschool their children. Further research can explore variances in socio-economic, racial, or linguistic differences in homeschooling families as well as how travel experiences or lack thereof can impact their approach to educating their children.
(5) The Social Realities of Homeschooling — D. Sikkink (2020)
Introduction: In a recent University of Arizona Law Review article, Elizabeth Bartholet, a Harvard law professor, claims that the “homeschooling regime poses real dangers to children and to society.” Bartholet’s legal argument is that homeschooling is an infringement on child rights, placing children in inferior, socially isolating, and dangerous educational environments. This threatens democracy, she says, since homeschooling is not likely to provide the kind of civic education available in public schools, especially regarding democratic values. Besides the risk of child abuse and indoctrination, the strength of far right-wing religious conservatives in the homeschooling movement ensures that children will be forced into submitting to patriarchy, leading, Bartholet fears, to “female subservience.” If that wasn’t enough, she goes on to charge the homeschooling movement with links to white supremacy and racial segregation. According to Bartholet, the future of our democracy depends on “freeing” these children from unhappiness and ignorance.
What interesting homeschool news and research have you come across this Leo Term? 👩🏻🎓
❡ Explore more: If you’d like to investigate the academic literature on homeschooling, the best place to start is Google Scholar (scholar.google.com), the special academic search engine from Google. Just enter a search term or phrase of interest (“homeschool,” “unschooling,” “classical homeschooling,” “deschooling,” etc.), and Google Scholar will return a list of academic publications that mention your topic. 🔎
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