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Friday, March 30, 2012

Home School Fragments (and a Puppyism)

Half Past Kissing Time presents Friday Fragments.  Today I will share some Home School info that might not otherwise make it into it's own post.

SB 136 footnote.

Last year a state senator from Illinois made a name for himself in the homeschooling community by proposing that all home schools and private schools would need to be registered on the state level.  The proposed bill showed no understanding of Illinois  state law.  One reason for this is that Home schools in Illinois are considered private schools.  That means that the wording of the bill was redundant because  merely requesting that all private schools register would require home educators to do the same.  Alas private schools were never really the target of the bill and the wording was quickly changed to refer only to home schools.

The senator Ed Maloney introduced the bill and there was an instant reaction of the negative kind.  Home Educators after flooding their representatives with phone calls,  stopped what they were doing and headed to Springfield in the thousands to discuss the bill.  Ed Maloney was never able to give sufficient proof that homeschoolers were "falling under the cracks" and the bill was tabled without ever being voted on.

I wrote several pieces on the matter here and have become very interested in the career of senator Maloney.  He has decided not to seek reelection.  I did some research and found that one of the candidates running to replace him states that she is a  strong supporter of homeschooling at her campaign website.  Thanks again Mr. Maloney for bringing the people of your district a potential advocate to the institution you sought to alter.

Speaking of Frivolous Laws

One of the main reasons I opposed SB 136 besides the total lack of need to "fix" something not broken was the additional cost to taxpayers in doing so.  This is one of the reasons why I am opposed to SB 3259 which is a bill being considered to raise the compulsory school age in Illinois from 17 to 18.  The law is sponsored by Kimberly Lightford and co-sponsored by 6 other senators from her party.  Lightford like Maloney and 4 of the 6 co-sponsors received significant campaign funding from teachers unions.  I mention this because teachers and their unions are the direct beneficiaries of this law as more teachers will need to be hired if the age is increased. 

I am opposed to the bill for 5 reasons.

1. The proposed law will not be able to do what it says it will as there is no proven correlation between dropout rates and compulsory age.

2. It should be the job of parents and not the government to decide when their children should end their schooling.

3. By my reading it seemss the law would require home educators of 18 year olds to register with the state; and I think we all know how I feel about that.

4.  While the law would benefit teacher and unions and not neccesarily the students it purport to help (see objection 1) it would increase the tax burden of parent affected by the law.

5. It is a law that was conceived by lawmakers who didn't even consult with school superintendents to see if a law was needed.  There was also similar lack of reasoning for Sb136.  It has been told that Senator Maloney conceived SB136 after learning of a homeschooling relative while at a Holiday party.  Our tax dollars are certainly at work.

Mount Rushmore

I am teaching 2 classes about the Mount Rushmore Presidents at our home school co-op.  If you wanted to teach about one object in American History that encompasses more time than Mount Rushmore you might be hard pressed to do so.

The history of Mount Rushmore and the presidents thereof, goes back to the colonial period prior to the French American war and goes though to Depression Era works projects.  This has been a very enjoyable process for me and hopefully my students as well.

Non Home School Related Puppyism

Puppy sometimes pretends she's a wolf named Wolfina.  Just like when she used to play with pretend puppies on the bed she now brings pretend wolves everywhere she goes. 

On Wednesday we were visiting my Dad who is recovering nicely from a very successful prostate cancer surgery.  On the way home Puppy was sitting in the back seat and we had this conversation:

Puppy/Wolfina: Dad I left one of my wolves at Grandpa's house. 
Me: One of your Pretend wolves.
P/W: That's okay we don't have to get it.  He likes it there.

The funniest thing about the exchange was the was that Puppy said her last line as if I had fully intended to turn around and get the missing wolf.  When actually at about the same time she asked we had just passed a gas station selling it's wares at $4.52.9 a gallon.  (I had only paid $4.39.9, so that's a relief.

Well that's that for Fragments for this week and probably for a while.  I am participating in Blogging A to Z starting Sunday and if I think of a fragment idea, I will probably figure out what letter it starts with and share it on it's given day.

For more fragments click here.


  1. The history of Mt. Rushmore is fascinating...

  2. We only had one child with an imaginary friend - - - and it was a human friend - - - I think.

    Gas isn't that high here - - - - yet. Oh the joys of looking ahead.

  3. My mom was a little girl when they were carving Lincoln's nose on Mt. Rushmore :)

    I agree with your points about home schooling, you have to admit that all home schooling parents are not as dedicated as you. As a special ed teacher, I have come across a handful of deadbeat parents over the years who claim to be homeschooling their children, when in fact they are doing nothing. In Wisconsin (the last time I checked anyway, years ago), all you had to do to home school was fill out some paperwork; there was no accountability. It was hard for me to have students whose educations I knew would suffer greatly because of their parents' poor decision making. So...I can also see the other side.

    Thanks for linking up to FF :) Have a great week!


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