Monday, January 18, 2010
It strikes me that the issue of home schooling is complicated. Some home schooling is very well done (with appropriate regard for the needs of children for opportunites to socialize with other children); some is not. It seems clear to me that this is an area that requires state regulation just as it is clear that the states may regulate private education. The issue can not be resolved properly by the invocation of absolute parental rights or by sweeping appropriate invocations of those rights away. The issue has to be addressed with attention to the facts on the ground and the facts may differ from locality to locality. One of the things I worry about is that political forces in some areas might render appropriate state regulation ineffective. I also worry that public schools are hostile to affording extracurricular opportunities to home schooled children (which privileges institutional considerations over the needs of children in their district).