Saturday, November 24, 2007

Elizabeth Edwards on homeschooling

Christine Escobar interviewed Elizabeth Edwards about homeschooling. This post of the interview comes up easier for me.

Elizabeth Edwards talks about the decision to homeschool. Four years ago when her husband, John Edwards, ran for president they found it was hard on their children. They decided to go with homeschooling during the 2008 campaign as a better option for their children.

"Well, we knew that from our previous experience campaigning was going to require a lot of time away from home. And taking several months for campaigning and seeing the children only every few days, it was not ideal for us. And the way we'd be able to see them more, include them more, let them be part of the experience..., you know they were young the last time, it was easier to pull them out, but in public school, in 2nd grade and 4th grade, you shouldn't be pulling them out willy-nilly just because that's a convenient time for you, even if we could get away with it, it would leave the impression that our children were entitled to special treatment and we do not think that."

They are using a tutor. The children go over to a specific room at their house which sounds like it is set up as a school at home. Elizabeth says the children get to choose if they want to attend an event for their father.

The interview is long. Elizabeth says they like homeschooling but they are very supportive of public schools.


Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education


Anonymous said...

normally, i do not like to comment on how other homeschoolers homeschool (i.e. unschooling or traditional book method) however, i resent this being called homeschooling. mrs edwards hired a teacher who has direct contact with the kids' teachers in the school they would be attending normally. the district provides the same books, worksheets and such that the kids in the classroom use. they also take the same tests which are forwarded to the public school teacher. this is NOT homeschooling. this is public school at home. it is the same as when a student is too sick to attend school and the school sends a sub with the work from school.
mrs edwards, like most politicians, is trying to win votes with one group (homeschoolers) while not offending another (public school teachers)

Happy Elf Mom (Christine) said...

Mrs. Dani read my mind, only I'm more steamed about it than she apparently is LOL! I had to write my very own blog post about this one, complete with venting LOL!

Mrs. C

Happy Elf Mom (Christine) said...

OK I posted the link but it didn't seem to work when I checked it. Try this one and if that doesn't work, just click on my ID and scroll down. Sorry.

Rebecca Mecomber said...

I agree with Mrs. Dani. This method sure doesn't sound like homeschooling. Since whenis private tutoring considered homeschooling?

What classifies as homeschooling? Isn't homeschooling also more of a lifestyle? Isn't homeschooling more meaningful than just as the opposite of public schooling? For example, if I don't send my kids to public school, therefore I homeschool? That's wacky.

Henry Cate said...

The term homeschooling means different things to different people. Clearly Mrs. Edwards is not using the term like I normally use the term.

I think she is in between a public school model and a more traditional homeschooling model. For me one of the important points is she and her husband have taken at least partial ownership of the process of educating their children.

Anonymous said...

i hate to argue with you mr. cate, but she has NOT taken any ownership of her children's education other than where it is held.

she is not inbetween a traditional homeschooling model and a public school model unless all you are commenting on is where the school takes place. as i stated on my website, the teacher is contacts the public school teachers on a daily basis to make sure the kids are in the exact same place as their comrades. there is no in between models here.

Henry Cate said...

Mr.s Dani, you are doing fine. It is OK to have polite disagreement on this blog.

From my prespective the Edwards have taken ownership for the education of their children because they have asserted that they are responsible and can make the choice. As parents they have said, to a small degree, that they don't have to be sheep and do what public schools tell them to do.

I do agree that because of politics they are trying to have it both ways.

kat said...

The Edwards are living in North Carolina which has strict guidelines for what is considered homeschooling. The legal definition is:

GS 115C-563a "Home school means a nonpublic school in which one or more children of not more than 2 families or households receive academic instruction from parents or legal guardians, or a member of either household."

In the FAQ I was sent:
May an "outside of household" professional educator be used exclusively to provide academic instruction directly to my child?


So... either the Edwards are having a live-in tutor provide instruction OR they are homeschooling illegally.

kat said...

After reading the article and looking at the FAQ list from the NC Division of Non-Public Education it is apparent that the Edwards are not homeschooling:

"that they're not entirely removed from their school. The kids do go over, they periodically have lunch with the classes which they were assigned, they actually visit with their classmates... But they have them largely with their public school friends.
We're also using the curriculum from [the school] that their assigned teachers have for the year, so that they stay on course."

They are doing public school at-home, they are using the public school curriculum, the teachers, they visit the class they would be in regularly, and they even eat school lunches. Yuck!

Later on the interviewer asks if they have had much support from the homeschool community, "Well, not really." I wonder why? Maybe because they aren't REALLY homeschooling?

Anonymous said...

I just read that entire article and was pretty steamed about it. Mrs. Edwards is NOT homeshooling. They are using the public school curriculum and a paid teacher. They are keeping the kids involved with school activities, even lunch sometimes.
But what really gets me is how she separates her family from actual homeschoolers at every turn. She points out that they are only doing this because of their unique situation, and because they have the resources, space, money, etc. etc. She does not support homeschoolers, in fact her comments about her own inability to teach math show her true ignorance about the nature of homeschooling. I'm keeping my eye on this now that Edwards is running around with Obama (VP???)