BURLINGTON COUNTY, NJ -- The killings at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut of 18 children and seven adults marks a new, very sad, low for American public schools. This type of incident in the American public school system is completely intolerable. There is a positive alternative however, homeschooling. Homeschooling facts reveal homeschooling to be non-violent and a supportive learning culture.
In the wake of the Connecticut shootings, debates have been reignited over U.S. gun laws. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, founder of the advocacy group Mayors Against Illegal Guns, said it was "almost impossible to believe that a mass shooting in a kindergarten class could happen." "We need immediate action. We have heard all the rhetoric before. What we have not seen is leadership - not from the White House and not from Congress," Bloomberg said. "That must end today."
Unlike homeschooling which has yet to demonstrate any obvious incidences of violence, public schools over the past decades demonstrate a tide of violence which has spread outwardly. The use of metal detector wands to check random students is chilling. Is this public school environment really the most productive atmosphere for children to learn?
Again, unlike homeschooling, violence is not the only thing spreading through the public school system. Drugs entered the schools and have crept into the lower grades consistently throughout the years. There have been trends toward increased promiscuity, teenage pregnancy, cheating, and lastly, suicide. This type of at risk behavior has yet to be identified as existing in the homeschooling environment.
Homeschooling is one of the healthy alternative trends in American society. According to D. Brian Ray, it is estimated to be growing at about 15% per year. Dr. Ray's estimates are supported by the U.S. Department of Education's National Household Education Survey program. There will probably be a huge increase in this percentage as violence continues to grow within the public system.
Test score studies has found that the homeschooling students score average or above on standardized achievement tests up to and including college-entrance SAT's. When homeschooling learners go to college, they tend to earn excellent grades during their first semester (according to a survey of Pennsylvania Homeschoolers graduates).
Homeschooling students grow up sharing their parents' religious values. Most homeschooling families emphasize the concept: "Learning + Values + Family = Homeschooling." Homeschooling parents tend to promote wholesome values in their children while instructing with programs and support that emphasize educational and homeschooling facts.
A University of Florida doctoral dissertation by Larry Shyers found that homeschooling children socialize well together. They are cooperative and friendly. Shyers theorized that homeschooling students learn how to behave toward others by modeling their parents, not their peers. They learn from their families.
With the increase in public school violence, many are choosing the positive alternative of homeschooling. Homeschooling facts reveal homeschooling to be non-violent and a supportive learning culture. Most homeschooling students will tell you how grateful they feel to be educated in a safe environment, home.