New School Protocols Will Guarantee a Homeschooling Surge

 

The only polling data we have on how parents are feeling about homeschooling in light of all of the coronavirus restrictions is from a school-choice organization, but the results were shocking:

A survey of just over 2,100 people, conducted by the school choice advocacy group American Federation for Children, says 40% of parents are considering continuing to teach their kids from home.

Frankly: I don’t think it’s that high. But it is higher than most public policy advocates realize. There are parents who suddenly realizing how little their kids were learning in school and that they are capable of educating their own children. But a large number of parents who opt to homeschool next year will choose to do so based on the way schools will be reconfiguring their classrooms in a post-COVID world.

In my state of Maryland this is what it’s shaping up to look like:

The “new normal” for school districts likely includes:

  • Mandatory masks
  • Daily temperature checks
  • Enhanced/more frequent cleaning procedures and sanitation methods
  • Enforced social distancing, especially for elementary students in areas like playgrounds.

Class sizes are likely to be reduced so that all desks can be kept six feet apart, and schools may choose to host classes outdoors or in large, open spaces like gyms or cafeterias. Some classes or meetings that involve hands-on instruction (art, PE, parent-teacher conferences) may be hosted virtually, and large school gatherings (assemblies, school dances) may be reduced or canceled.

Would you send your kid to a classroom where they can’t get near another child, play on a playground, and sit in a desk all day in a mask? And then there are the parents who understand the painfully obvious: Kids are not going to social distance and there’s no keeping this virus at bay. And for those with at-risk kids or individuals at home, they know that they’ll be bringing home COVID no matter what.

If there is a significant surge in homeschooling, it’s going to be because schools are forcing parents’ hands by enacting anti-child policies in a hopeless effort to keep the virus out of the building.

Published in General
Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

There are 16 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Weeping Inactive
    Weeping
    @Weeping

    Bethany Mandel: Would you send your kid to a classroom where they can’t get near another child, play on a playground, and sit in a desk all day in a mask?

    I wouldn’t want to be one of the teachers under those kinds of conditions. There’s no way he/she will be able to force the kids to wear a mask all day – no way.

    • #1
  2. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    It is an ill wind that blows no good.

    • #2
  3. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    That is good news. Ann Coulter endeared herself to me years ago when she wrote something close to this: The kids are doing really well in fourth grade, not as well in eighth grade, and very poorly by tenth grade. In what other industry does such failure survive? :-)

    Bethany Mandel: There are parents who suddenly realizing how little their kids were learning in school and that they are capable of educating their own children.

    I’m sure that is the biggest reason. I’ve always said that if more parents were present in schools each day, education would change for the better.

    • #3
  4. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Parents need to realize you don’t have to have a degree in education to teach children.  My mother taught me the ABCs (reading and writing) when I was little.  Even when I was 3-4 years old, I could read the menus behind the counters at the various diners we would go to.  When I got to first grade, I flipped through Fun With Dick and Jane so fast the teacher got p*ssed and made me sit in a corner for not reading aloud along with the class . . .

    • #4
  5. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Nope. Not gonna happen.

    • #5
  6. James Gawron Inactive
    James Gawron
    @JamesGawron

    Bethany,

    Our education system both K thru 12 and University has been going from bad to worse for a long long time. If there is any silver lining to the dark cloud of the virus it is the chance this has given every one to reevaluate the education system.

    Given the indoctrination that has been unleashed on the youngest children, I think that all parents should be prepared for the necessity of homeschooling if they can’t afford a private school. Meanwhile, the University has been unmasked as wasteful, perverse, and anti-democratic. It is time to challenge the whole structure. If online universities want to provide quality educations at affordable prices it is time to force their accreditation. 

    The kids must go back to school but the schools aren’t going to hold their monopoly over parents anymore.

    Regards

    Jim

     

    • #6
  7. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    Bethany Mandel:

    In my state of Maryland this is what it’s shaping up to look like:

    The “new normal” for school districts likely includes:

    • Mandatory masks
    • Daily temperature checks
    • Enhanced/more frequent cleaning procedures and sanitation methods
    • Enforced social distancing, especially for elementary students in areas like playgrounds.

    Class sizes are likely to be reduced so that all desks can be kept six feet apart, and schools may choose to host classes outdoors or in large, open spaces like gyms or cafeterias. Some classes or meetings that involve hands-on instruction (art, PE, parent-teacher conferences) may be hosted virtually, and large school gatherings (assemblies, school dances) may be reduced or canceled.

    Those rules are asinine for kids whose risks for the cornoavirus are about as close to nil as is possible.

     

    • #7
  8. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    tigerlily (View Comment):

    Bethany Mandel:

    In my state of Maryland this is what it’s shaping up to look like:

    The “new normal” for school districts likely includes:

    • Mandatory masks
    • Daily temperature checks
    • Enhanced/more frequent cleaning procedures and sanitation methods
    • Enforced social distancing, especially for elementary students in areas like playgrounds.

    Class sizes are likely to be reduced so that all desks can be kept six feet apart, and schools may choose to host classes outdoors or in large, open spaces like gyms or cafeterias. Some classes or meetings that involve hands-on instruction (art, PE, parent-teacher conferences) may be hosted virtually, and large school gatherings (assemblies, school dances) may be reduced or canceled.

    Those rules are asinine for kids whose risks for the cornoavirus are about as close to nil as is possible.

    Also, didn’t we just read that Montgomery county in Maryland is instituting LGBTQ-whatever classes in their elementary schools. Soon, there will not be room on their calendar for such ancillary things as reading, writing and arithmetic.

     

    • #8
  9. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    The new rules seem to rule out:

    • Football
    • Basketball
    • Band

    … and most of the other things that the politicians threaten when they try to ram through authorization for new school bond issues.

    “But homeschooled children won’t be properly socialized” they’ll moan.

    Neither will the kids under these new rules.

    If there is to be any indoctrination going on, I’ll trust the parents to do it.

    • #9
  10. Hammer, The Member
    Hammer, The
    @RyanM

    All to fight what is roughly a 0% risk to children. Sounds reasonable.

    • #10
  11. Jules PA Inactive
    Jules PA
    @JulesPA

    MarciN (View Comment):
    The kids are doing really well in fourth grade, not as well in eighth grade, and very poorly by tenth grade.

    Another way to look at that progression is the strengthening will of the child and the choices they make. 

    In too many circumstances good teachers are hamstrung by administrative and parental foolishness, which only exaggerates the rather expected child foolishness. 

    I assure you, the parents of the most challenging children will not be keeping them home in the fall, and will curse the Governors for any decision that does not get their kid back into the teacher’s hair, and out of their own. 

    On a good note, I applaud any parent who takes action to educate their kid directly, especially when they are in K-6.

    I wonder how many parents have changed their mind about daycare for the under 4 age crowd?  

    • #11
  12. Lilly B Coolidge
    Lilly B
    @LillyB

    Thanks for sharing Maryland’s plans for opening schools. I understand why Maryland is considering starting elementary schools earlier than middle and high schools, since I can see that online learning works much better for my 6th and 9th graders than my 3rd grader. However, I also feel much better able to home school my 3rd grader. I am planning for that just in case, and perhaps regardless of whether schools open. If they open with weird distancing rules, I won’t send her. The demands to follow rules at her elementary school were already stifling enough.

    As a resident of northern Virginia, I am not confident in our schools re-opening in the fall. They are discussing options, but I have a hunch that the shut-down enthusiasm in my area will continue into the fall. If the schools do re-open, it seems likely that many of the extracurricular activities like band, chorus, and theater, which are very difficult to replicate online, will be eliminated. That’s a huge reason to send them, as again, we could more easily do the course-work online. 

    My kids participate in athletics outside of school, but our local sports leagues will almost certainly follow the school district’s lead on whether to open. This spring, the loss of sports, and even access to fields, tracks, and pools, has definitely taken a toll of my kids’ fitness (and happiness). It’s nice that they have time to ride bikes, but they are missing their team sports. Summer swim team seasons have been cancelled in our area, which just adds to the disappointments.

    As I mentioned in my symposium post, we are really wondering why we live in an expensive and crowded area when we can no longer enjoy the benefits of the schools and leagues that this population typically supports (and my husband isn’t allowed to go to work at the office). We are considering where else we could live that would not only give us more space if we do need to continue work and school from home, but that might also be less likely to continue draconian closures of outdoor facilities. Any ideas?

    • #12
  13. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    Lilly B (View Comment):
    Any ideas?

    Give up on public schools. Homeschool. They can learn more in 2-3 hours doing a homeschool than all day at work. Join a local homeschool group to provide “socialization.” If you are nervous about your ability to pull together a curriculum, go with Calvert, which is structured. (A Supreme Court justice was educated using Calvert.)  We used Calvert the first year we homeschooled.

    If you are homeschooling you can live literally anywhere. If you don’t mind hot, consider Texas. Otherwise if you are committed to staying in the middle Atlantic states, relocate to the Shenandoah or further west – something convenient to the coast on a 2-3 hour drive, but far enough to be in the production belt (anything outside the core cities where things are actually grown and manufactured).

    • #13
  14. Lilly B Coolidge
    Lilly B
    @LillyB

    Seawriter (View Comment):

    Lilly B (View Comment):
    Any ideas?

    Give up on public schools. Homeschool. They can learn more in 2-3 hours doing a homeschool than all day at work. Join a local homeschool group to provide “socialization.” If you are nervous about your ability to pull together a curriculum, go with Calvert, which is structured. (A Supreme Court justice was educated using Calvert.) We used Calvert the first year we homeschooled.

    If you are homeschooling you can live literally anywhere. If you don’t mind hot, consider Texas. Otherwise if you are committed to staying in the middle Atlantic states, relocate to the Shenandoah or further west – something convenient to the coast on a 2-3 hour drive, but far enough to be in the production belt (anything outside the core cities where things are actually grown and manufactured).

    We have been looking at exactly those places! Maybe Houston and maybe Lexington. I have only been to Texas twice, and we are trying to figure out how to go again soon to explore housing. But I‘m so used to the mid-Atlantic climate…Thanks for the specific recommendation to use Calvert. I’ll check it out.

    • #14
  15. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Percival (View Comment):
    “But homeschooled children won’t be properly socialized” they’ll moan.

    What they really mean is, “Homeschooled children won’t be socialized by the government.”

    We knew a lot of homeschooled families here, and they socialized like crazy.  Politicians act like homeschoolers are the only house for miles with any children in them.  Obviously they’ve never lived in normal neighborhoods . . .

    • #15
  16. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    What is interesting about school socialization is that when it began the idea of keeping large numbers of children of the same age together and only socializing with others near their own age (and their schoolmasters) was seen as a bad thing. If you read books (especially novels) written in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries (when this type of thing was starting) you can see it was accepted as an evil, but one that was necessary to get the specialized education needed with the Industrial Age. So how did it go from being a necessary evil to a positive benefit?

    My three (homeschooled) did a lot better in general society than my nieces and nephews (public schooled) because they were used to dealing with people of all ages.

    • #16
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.