Friday, July 14, 2006

Rants, Raves and Comments - part 2

Continuing on from Rants, Raves and Comments - part 1

This is a response to a recent comment on our blog.

7/13/2006 2:25 PM JEANNE said... It is also a midwestern phenom.

FACT: Homeschoolers live in all 50 states.

The US Department of Education estimated that in 1995, 1.4% of the US population age 4 to 17 are homeschooled. The homeschooling rate varies from state to state, but is at least 1% or higher in every state. Many agree that this estimate is low.

If you live in Florida, you cannot really really do it due to the cost of it all. Homes are $400,000 here, so women do,will and have to work.

Fact: Homeschoolers find a way to make it work in a variety of financial situations and locations.

In Bay Area of California where I live, there are many homeschool families as evidenced by the number of homeschool groups. In Santa Clara county, the median home price is over $750,000.

My dear husband and I are in our 40s and have no children. We cannot afford to adopt and well, y'all are soooooooooo off the wall.

Fact: Adoption is very affordable when done through the foster-adopt program.

According to the Florida Department of Children and Families, Florida does not charge to place foster children in adoptive homes. The main costs for a foster care adoption are court costs and attorney fees. In most cases, these costs are less than $500 and may be reimbursed by the state. The state of Florida will even pay for 4 years of college for the adopted child.

I DARE YOU ALL TO TAKE THE fcat. You would not pass that test. Your lessons are no good. Prove to me what lessons you do.

Fact: Parents of homeschoolers had higher levels of educational attainment than did parents of nonhomeschoolers.

Educated parents would have little problem passing a high school level test. Here's some sample questions from the fcat.

We could go round and round on the pros and cons of testing. I don't think testing necessarily measures what some think it does. However, we do use standardize testing as a tool. I use it to see if I'm missing something and to give the kids practice at that type of testing. I don't base my curriculum around the test and I don't report the results to anyone.

For example, when my oldest daughter was in 2nd grade, she tested a little below grade level. We didn't change what we were doing, just continued on the same. As she matured, everything changed. In 4th grade, she tested at a 12+ reading level. The test confirmed what I already knew. Somewhere around 8 years old, reading finally clicked for her.

How children test in 2nd grade, 4th grade, 9th grade and so forth really doesn't matter, but it gives them practice. When they take tests like the ACT or SAT before college, they should feel comfortable with the standardized testing game and know how to work the system.

I have used 3 different testing services. The easiest and cheapest is I've also used Bayside Educational Services to take the CAT/5 test. It is more expensive and slower, but you get neat printouts with graphs comparing your child to the norm. I admit, I like the little graphs, charts, and percentiles. When I go over the results with the girls, I point out their top results and say, "This can get you a money for college."

By the way, I will be home doctoring next week. Brain surgery. I learned it in homeschool. Do you teach that too?

FACT: Teacher certification does not improve academic performance.

Again, From Education Policy Analysis Archives, Volume 7 Number 8 March 23, 1999

"...Controlling for grade and parent education level, there is no significant difference in the achievement levels of home school students whose parents are certified and those that are not."

" every grade level, the mean performance of home school students whose parents do not have a college degree is much higher than the mean performance of students in public schools. Their percentiles are mostly in the 65th to 69th percentile range."

Remember, this isn't brain surgery.

To continue see Rants, Raves and Comments - part 3

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Anonymous said...

I wish childless people could get a clue as to how ridiculous they sound when they "give advice" on parenting!

Do these people tell their lawyers how to practice law? Do they tell their plumbers how to fix the leak? Do they instruct their accountants in the best way to add 2+2?

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your response to her total non sequitar regarding her supposed inability to adopt! Priceless!

ChristineMM said...

Weird comments.

Practicing medicine without a license is illegal so that brain surgeon wanna be had better watch out!

Sprittibee said...

Wow. It's a good thing that teacher didn't come to my blog and post a nasty, mean comment like that. Now I can't wait to get my test results and see where my son fit in. I'm quite sure he did well on it. I'm sure that just rubs the test-givers raw having to sift through the homeschool results.

Hanley Family said...

A little ot, but the fost-adopt got me. I know this varies widely, but here in NE, you get paid as a foster parent. I believe starting at $250 per month? I worked for an agency, and parents working with agency based children receive $750 per month (and up, if they have higher needs kids). Anyway, the adoption is paid for by the state AND you get a stipend which includes their Medicare and up to one dollar less than you were making prior to adopting.

I've enjoyed your ranting series. Have you seen the carnival of the rant? You should submit : )

Janine Cate said...

>Have you seen the carnival of the rant?

No, I've never heard of it.

I will have to go check it out.


Anonymous said...

I cannot believe the fCAT give the student instructions on using the calculator and then also gives the mathematical formulas! Ooooo, tough test. What a laugh.