Message Boards

Topic : 11/24 Great School Debate

Number of Replies: 4215
New Messages This Week: 0
Last Reply On:
Created on : Friday, November 17, 2006, 12:57:50 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
Parents want the best for their children, but what’s the best way to educate them? Dr. Phil’s guests face off in a debate about whether to school, homeschool or unschool. Dana and her husband, Joe, call themselves radical unschoolers. They say education happens as a side effect of life, and they don’t believe in tests, curriculums or grades. Are their three kids learning what they need to know? Then, RaeAnn says public schools are death traps and wants to homeschool her children. Her husband, Steve, says their kids are safer at school than they are at home. Can this couple reach a compromise? Plus, Nicole feels like an outcast at 26. She says she hated being homeschooled, and couldn’t relate to other kids. Share your thoughts here.

Find out what happened on the show.

More November 2006 Show Boards.

As of January, 2009, this message board will become "Read Only" and will be closed to further posting. Please join the NEW Dr. Phil Community to continue your discussions, personalize your message board experience, start a blog and meet new friends.

November 18, 2006, 3:12 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: faeryedark

 My kids are in public school and are doing great. However, they may be going to a private school or home schooled in the coming years. Our district is in a war right now about building a new High School and consolidating Elementarys. My sons attend a wonderful little (one deep elem.) I know all the teachers and they're very good. My kids score at the top of their groups But, now the district is coming in and wanting to consolidate the smaller older schools into one big one. Meaning, my kids would be bused,(they live a few blocks from their school and walk everyday).. Also, their Grandma lives right nearby and the library's right next door  And there would be 4 classes per grade and to me they'd lose a great deal all in the name of progress. Add to that the fact, that the site of the new school would be on a community park. The district has "generously" allowed the use of the school's playground to the community after school hours.  I won't even get into the whole thing about the new high school. If things keep going the way they are my children won't be attending any of these schools.
And I think this is a problem with a lot of schools, they "seem" to think that the bigger the school the better, but I think a smaller setting is better but of course that is my opinion and that is why I chose a school that is smaller in size. I still think my daughters class is too big but it is smaller then the school classes down the street that she would have went to.
 
November 18, 2006, 3:17 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: steiwhleur

I graduated from an upper-middle class high school in 1990.  I thought I had learned what needed to be learned so that I could go on to college.  WRONG!  In college I had to pay for REMEDIAL math classes!!! I was so angry.  But then I looked around at who was in my remedial class and they were all students from North Hills High School!!  I wanted to bill the high school for my remedial classes, but my parents said I should just drop it.  I wish I had sent the high school a bill.  Maybe it would have caused them to take another look at their sub-par cirriculum!!

 

That was all hapening 16 years ago!  I now live in New Mexico and the schools here are horrific.  Graduates can't read, write, do math, spell....nothing!  My niece is in the 9th grade and probably reads on a 4th grade level.  She can't spell correctly if her life depended on it...and it does.  No one wants to hire someone too stupid to spell or add or divide correctly.  And her speaking is just as bad.  She sounds like a dullard.  This will haunt her for the rest of her life.  People will assume she's an idiot, not the kind, sweet, beautiful girl that she has become.

 

New Mexico ranks 43rd out of 50 for our inadequate schooling, yet our govenor refuses to address it.  Yes he's trying to throw money at the problem, but we need to start requiring more from the teachers and principals before we can make such demands on our children.  New Mexico also has a "don't ask" policy about if a child is an illegal or an American citizen.  Therefore our schools are flooded with illegals who only speak Spanish.  This adds to the teachers' burden---the teachers must learn and teach Spanish to "accomodate" these illegals.  No wonder we rank so low!!  New Mexico is like a 3rd world country in many ways.

 

Home schooling sounds like the way to go so long as the parents meet all the required credentials and they are diligent about teaching at home.  Home schooled kids should have some kind of network so that they can be around like-aged kids.  That way they can learn the socialization skills needed out in the real world.

 

For our retirement we are looking to go to the mountains of Montana -- maybe we'll find some smart people like us up there!!

There are networking opportunities in the homeschool field. There are support groups and opportunities to meet others and go on field trips and all that plus there are many ways to socialize kids, not all kids who go to public school have good social skills, parents just have to know what they are doing and have their kids best interests at hand.  My kids are only 3 and 5 and they have absolutely no problem socially, and my litttle one is a little shy but the child has a new best froend every time I turn around it seems,LOLLLLLLLL.
 
November 18, 2006, 3:29 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: kschmittz

My husband and I are very "concerned" with our children's education, therefore, we moved to a higher end area with good public schools.  My oldest son is 8 and in 3rd grade.   He is almost a year younger than most of the other kids as their Moms kept them back a year.  He is doing above average work and not having any issues.  I think there is A LOT of mis-understanding about public schools.  First, in my son's class there are LESS kids than the average area's private schools.  Next, there are boudaries set by the district on w hat they can teach your child that do not exist in private school.  In private school (I found this out after we checked out private schools and from a teacher) they can teach whatever they see fit.  Also, it is up to the parent to be involved in their child's education.  If you see your child is struggling in any way, then go to the teacher and work something out.  Public school has a multitude of programs to assist you and with the "NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND" there's really no excuse (learning disability or whatever) to not have your child succeed.  We have what is called a 504 plan for my son.  Basically, it is a legal document that will follow him through High School.  I can dicatate (if need be) every move/action the teacher makes in regards to my son.  It is NOT that way now but the option exists.  This is available to all parents at any public school.  Last, I can claim all you do about my son's public school.  That is why we are "dishing out the money" to live in a nice area.  Therefore, the crime and bullying you speak of really isn't an issue where we live.   If it does happen, then my son will take care of it with help from his Dad and I.  I think a lot of people are very mis-guided about not only private school but homeschooling and unschooling as well.  Part of education is not just academics.  There is so much more.  In today's world, there is very little chance for self-sufficiency without a decent education.  Also, you need to have skills beyond that.  If you can't deal with people or situations that may come up in life (like bullying) you are not likely to have a lot of job offers.  In a public school setting, although not perfect, there is much more to learn on a social level.  You learn to wait your turn, respect others and that there are consequences for your actions that can affect your whole class.  Anyone who thinks the majority of private schools kids are perfect, think again.  When I was young, these were among the most wild of us all.  They just had the $$ to get out of most any trouble. 

 

All in all, a good education can come from a good public school.  I agree, not all are good.  There are some even in my district I would not send my kids to.  That is why my hubby and I are very careful if we decided to buy another house in this area.  We want to make sure we stay within school lines that we like.  Also, if a parent expects the school to teach everything to their child then they are in error.  I am in my son's class every week helping out.  No, I am not  Room Mom every year but I am there.  I have been on Field Trips and helped out with parties and such.  I consider myself lucky to be able to do this even though I work full time.  There is academic education which I believe needs to be done by people who are qualified- someone with teaching credentials. For what it's worth, I also believe anyone who homeschools/unschools should have these same credentials. Then there  is the other edcuation which is about life.  This is up to parents. 

 

Last, don't assume every kid in public school has parents who don't care.  Just as you assume this there are people who assume things about you and your choices.  You are not the only parent who is involved in your child's life the way you are.  I have many many friends who are teachers in public schools and I can tell you they are far more trained than anyone realizes.  They are concerned and they do teach every child no matter how big their class is.  Also, in public school in 1st and 2nd grade the class size has to be UNDER 20 kids...again lower than most private schools.  My friends also say their biggest battle is not teaching the kids but dealing with parents.  Food for thought. 

If you notice in my postings, I always  express the fact that parents need to do their research and be familair with the  schools and system in their area.  I am not downing any one's choices and if you feel that way about me, I am sorry that I have come across that way, we as paretns have the privelege and obligation to do what is right by our kids and if you noticed , my originall response was to the poster who basically said it is public or nothing (not in those words), Parents have choices and that is the way it should be.  I dont like every private school out there and I also posted about the one that I checked in to.  Kids  need to be on the top of our priority  list as parents, unfortuanetly every school district is different and the crime and all that is higher in some areas then it is in others. Again, I say Kudos to all the good parents out there putitng their kids first and seeking out the best options for them, too bad that not all parents do this or are they invlved int herio children's loves, let alone their education. We, as parents can tell if our children are benefitting from their education atmosphere and if they are not then it is our responsibility as parents to figure out the issue and solution and to make the right decission to benefit our kids. 
 
November 18, 2006, 3:43 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: manda7

I never said I was better than anyone, I said that I studied and worked hard, but thank you for putting those words in my mouth.  I would like to point out how you use phrases like "those of us paying for our children's education" and ask which of us really has the better than thou attitude you accused me of.    It is wonderful that you can afford to send your daughter to public school, I was not so fortunate.  Children can get an excellent education in private school, but does it prepare them for real life where they will have to make the best of what the get and deal with all kinds of people.  You seem to be one of the growing trend today that is not comfortable when someone says something which holds people responsible for their own actions.

I realize that some people try hard and still have trouble. However, I am referring to the vast numbers of students who are failing or dropping out.  Many of them decide they just don't want to do their work or even don't want to go to school any more, and that is their fault not the public education system.  You can get a good education in public school, but you have to reach out and grab it, whether you do so is up to you. As for learning disabilities, the public school system has special education programs for those students.  I don't think that public education is a wonderful, flawless thing, It definitely has it's faults, but that is not an excuse to do poorly.

I'm sorry that I have offended you, I really didn;' mean to. There are kids who are learning disability and for the life of them, they still fail even though they work hard. I have been exposed to kids from many life styles and learning styles and unfortuanelty those kids are usually looked upon as being stupid and lazy. I am not denying that there are lazy kids and parents out there, geesh, I have a sister who I already mentioned that has basically ruined her children's chances of succeeding in life, I know what is out there and I know that every system can benefit and work. Yes, private schooling can and does prepare kids for the REAL world, There is no escaping it. Parents have the obligation to do what is best and right for their kids and regardless of the system we choose for our kids, if the kids are high priority then they will make it just as well as any one else. Not every kid is gonna come out socially or academically ready to face the world, regardless of their education setting, sad but true, but a good, decent homelife, education as a high priority, a good and comfortable setting will help  a whole lot and I as a parent will make sure my children have this right along with anything else positive. Kids can succeed in every form of education, We have choices and we need to take advantage of those choices and do what is best for our own kids
 
November 18, 2006, 3:43 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: princess1

Most homeschool families  do have some type of networking.  In our state you have to be registered  with the state to legally homeschool.  I  just can't understand why people think homeschoolers  are unsocialized.   My  son was far more socially active when I homeshcooled than when he was in public school.   I ask,  what is more of a social learning experience;  sitting in a class with 25 other kids all of the same age group for several hours a day and not being able to  have social interaction with them (that is against the rules, we must be quiet little robots in the classroom)  or being out in the real world interacting with all kinds of people?  The whole "no child left behind " thing is a real joke.  What they have done is lower the standards so the slower learning kids don't get lost.  When I pulled my son out of the public school he was the 10th child to leave the school for homeschooling that week.  His teachers would give him credit on his math just for writing an answer down.  (it did not have to be the correct answer, once he put the answer to 2+2=fish and the teacher marked it correct)  Instead of working with him they told him he was not smart enough to learn math.  In 3 years he finished the entire high school cirriculum, and graduated last May at the age of 16.  He also has been accepted into college.   I will agree that homeschooling is not for everyone, it is only for people who truly care about the education their child recieves.

 I will agree that homeschooling is not for everyone, it is only for people who truly care about the education their child recieves.

 

So parents who don't home school don't care about the education of their children. Wow!

 

As a former school administrator who has watched countless children revolve in and out of homeschooling, I can tell you that your evidence is purely anecdotal and completely biased. I am sure you know many successful homeschooling families, but that doesn't mean there aren't many unsuccessful homeschooling families. You don't know them because they are not joining your network and keeping active in all the work and commitment it takes to educate a child.

 

I am glad your state has some sort of regulation. My state pretty much lets any parents simply say they are homeschooling, fill out a withdrawal form, and that's that. many parents pull their kids out of public schools because they are tired of the school informing them that children are not behaving or participating in their learning. Then they get them home and realize that their kids will misbehave, not cooperate, and refuse to learn at home too! HUGE surprise!

 

I have a Masters in education, and I have no plans to home school my two children. I take great offense at you insinuating that I don't truly care about my children's education.

 
November 18, 2006, 3:53 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: jettav

My daughter works on her own, I have work books here at home that she has access to and her teacher has extra worksheets and pages from different resources out in her  writting and free play area. She is not forced/pushed to do any thing, she does these things on her own. She is the type of child that watches you do something and figures it out on her own, if she was made to stay on the kindergarten resources, she would be bored and not challenged enough. She does the same work every one else does but in her free time is free to do her thing and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. I do not believe in pushing kids but to allow them to work at their own paces.

I like the idea that parents in our society have the honor, the privelege and the obligation to decide what is best for their children and we all know that there is negative all around us, no one, I don't think is unaware of what is going on around them, and that is why parents need to do thier research, check the systems out where they
 are and know thier children's personalities and  learning style and do what is best for  their kids.

Yes, there are those paretns who do not put the effort in helping with the education process and that is a sad thing, for they are not benefitting thier kids whatsoever and in the end, most of themw ill regret it I think but unfortuanetly there will be those who do not give a hoot, I have a sister who has basically ruined her kids because of her "I don't care" attitude, she has been offered help and encouraged to put her youngest ina good FREE program but she refused to do it, the child is now 18 witha  2 year old kid and both of them are in custody of the system and that is only one of her kids, So I know what happens to kids in this society good and bad, I have seen many expamples of good and bad parenting as I have wroked witha nd tutired kids of all ages, wonlt go there.

The Poster I had origianally responded to seems to think that it is public schooling or nothing that works just because she did well. Not all kids who fail are lazy and come from bad parenting, there are resources out there and it doesnlt have to come from the public school system. We have to do our homewrok as parents and encourage and help our kids along regardless of the educational system that we choose, kids can succeed from every form of education experience if their best interest is at hand. I like the fact that my daughter is in a good system and even though it does not fit every ones criteria, that doesn't bother me, I did my homework in making sure she is in a good atmosphere and that she can learn and be happy in the systemt hat she is in. I believe in education and will always encourage my kids to do th best they can and to go for learning, homeschhol pubkic, or private, they can all benefit kids but not all systems are right for every family and yes, I chose the school that teaches biblical truths such as Respect, Loving God as well as others, the ten commandements and the Lord's Prayer is taught at htis School, afterall it is a Christian school and right along siode of all that, they are getting a good education and statistics fromt his school show it, no way am I gonna send her to the school walking distant to my house that she would have gone to, they do not ID any one who is there to pick up a child, I have walked in to pick up a kid I was babysitting and no one questioned who I was, Kids are running up and down the hall way after school with no suprvision,  and the school rating is not very good,I am not saying that is the way it is with every public school but the school that my daughter would go to and I am not comfortable sending her there and besides there is nothing wrong with the Christian school atmosphere, The school my daughter goes to has a peaceful feeling about it and I think that is a good thing.

So, bottom line to my message is that parents need to do their homework and seek out the best option for their kids and realize that there are resources and options out there, that one size does not fit all, kids have their own personalities and learning styles, not every school has the same criteria and security options, gotta do what's right for the kids. I choose the private school that my daughter goes to because it is a good school, great reputation, and a great staff to communicate with and my daughter looks forward to school every day, her excitement for learning is wonderful. I checked out one private christian school  and was not impressed for the office was in a different building then the preschool and kindergarten, grant it, they all had intercoms and  security devices but I feel that the office (principal) and younger kids especially should be easy access and in my opinion that set up was not and I as the parent of my child did not feel comfortable with that so she did not get enrolled there. Obviously, some paretns are ok with that set up as it is a good school so that option for them was ok for those families, We are all different in what we feel is imporant and all and that is something that every one needs to accept especially when it comes to the best when it comes to educating our kids as well as doing our part to keeping them as safe as possible,
Jetta, many parents do not have a "I don't care" attitude about schooling. Many parents simply do not have a choice to home school or to private school.

We live in a country that offers FREE education to every child regardless of background. That is amazing and that is something never to be taken for granted. Parents who send their kids to public schools, even the ones you find bad are simply taking advantage of something that is simply amazing in this world. They may not have a choice to look into home schooling and private schools. Public school may be their only choice. And, if you look at the entire world you realize, it's a GREAT choice.
 
November 18, 2006, 3:54 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: julie1418

Crime and bullying do NOT come from the public school system. We don't teach that as a special elective class! LOL! Crime and bullying come from people - and from kids. It's not inherent to the institution of public schools. Just because public schools have to deal with the problems of undisciplined children doesn't mean they are the CAUSE of those problems.

 

While I do not argue that private schooling or even homeschooling may be the best choice for some families, I am a bit concerned over the idea that just any parent is qualified to educate his/her children. It is a VERY serious commitment that requires time, dedication, and ability. I cannot tell you how many children are returned to public schools after parents get bored with homeschooling, and the children are woefully behind not only in academics but in social skills.

 

I know there are many homeschooling success stories, but I think it is misleading to say that any parent will be able to be successful in this area. Some simply do not have the ability, the education, the time, or a full understanding of what is required. I disagree that EVERY parent knows what is best for his/her child. If that were true, we wouldn't have the problems we have today. I know a lot of great parents, but I also have met many who absolutely SHOULD NOT homeschool.

And I agree that not all parents should be homeshooling and unfortuanetly there  are some educated teachers who cannot teach. it's one thing to be book smart but another to actually be able to do the job, Again, Parents have to do their home work, seek out  what is best for their kids and know that they are doing the right thing. No system is perfect, but the priority has to be on the kids, and I think those cases where the kids are not the high priority, whether they are the parents or the system, are the ones who have kids out of control and the more unsafe atmosphere.

Again, bottom line is it is parents responsibility to give their  kids the best of the best opportunity, especially when it comes to their education and which means kids need tobe ina safe and good living atmosphere and teachers/staff need to be working on the goal of providing the best education possible, unfortunetly there are parents and teachers failing in these areas and of course the kids reap the consequences. Again, i say kudos to all the good parents out there searching the best education for their kids and follwong through as well as the good teachers who put kids first regardless of the system they are in.
 
November 18, 2006, 3:54 pm CST

successful homeschooler

For the people who seem to think that homeschoolers are "behind" or "under-socialized", I was homeschooled pretty much my whole life.  I was active in a homeschool co-op which many NON-homeschoolers do not realize are in almost every city, took piano for 9+years, took horsemanship lessons (and showed!), took Tae Kwon Do, the list just goes ON AND ON.  Not only this, we went through an accredited school, where I graduated with a 3.87 GPA.

When I went to college, I did so well on my placement test that I tested out of math AND English, and at graduation, I was the top of my class (in my field).

Why was I homeschooled?  Because the public school could not keep up with me and did not want to "deal" with me due to my ADHD which caused me to be extremely bored.  Our public schools are NOT for everyone, and I know that I would not have gone as far as I did if I would have continued down the destructive public school path. 

Jessica

P.S.  Two of my younger sisters graduated public high school (this is one of the best public schools in NE Texas!) in all HONORS classes and could not tell you the difference between a noun and a verb nor could they do advanced math.  Yes, public schools at thier finest there!
 
November 18, 2006, 3:55 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

Quote From: kschmittz

My husband and I are very "concerned" with our children's education, therefore, we moved to a higher end area with good public schools.  My oldest son is 8 and in 3rd grade.   He is almost a year younger than most of the other kids as their Moms kept them back a year.  He is doing above average work and not having any issues.  I think there is A LOT of mis-understanding about public schools.  First, in my son's class there are LESS kids than the average area's private schools.  Next, there are boudaries set by the district on w hat they can teach your child that do not exist in private school.  In private school (I found this out after we checked out private schools and from a teacher) they can teach whatever they see fit.  Also, it is up to the parent to be involved in their child's education.  If you see your child is struggling in any way, then go to the teacher and work something out.  Public school has a multitude of programs to assist you and with the "NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND" there's really no excuse (learning disability or whatever) to not have your child succeed.  We have what is called a 504 plan for my son.  Basically, it is a legal document that will follow him through High School.  I can dicatate (if need be) every move/action the teacher makes in regards to my son.  It is NOT that way now but the option exists.  This is available to all parents at any public school.  Last, I can claim all you do about my son's public school.  That is why we are "dishing out the money" to live in a nice area.  Therefore, the crime and bullying you speak of really isn't an issue where we live.   If it does happen, then my son will take care of it with help from his Dad and I.  I think a lot of people are very mis-guided about not only private school but homeschooling and unschooling as well.  Part of education is not just academics.  There is so much more.  In today's world, there is very little chance for self-sufficiency without a decent education.  Also, you need to have skills beyond that.  If you can't deal with people or situations that may come up in life (like bullying) you are not likely to have a lot of job offers.  In a public school setting, although not perfect, there is much more to learn on a social level.  You learn to wait your turn, respect others and that there are consequences for your actions that can affect your whole class.  Anyone who thinks the majority of private schools kids are perfect, think again.  When I was young, these were among the most wild of us all.  They just had the $$ to get out of most any trouble. 

 

All in all, a good education can come from a good public school.  I agree, not all are good.  There are some even in my district I would not send my kids to.  That is why my hubby and I are very careful if we decided to buy another house in this area.  We want to make sure we stay within school lines that we like.  Also, if a parent expects the school to teach everything to their child then they are in error.  I am in my son's class every week helping out.  No, I am not  Room Mom every year but I am there.  I have been on Field Trips and helped out with parties and such.  I consider myself lucky to be able to do this even though I work full time.  There is academic education which I believe needs to be done by people who are qualified- someone with teaching credentials. For what it's worth, I also believe anyone who homeschools/unschools should have these same credentials. Then there  is the other edcuation which is about life.  This is up to parents. 

 

Last, don't assume every kid in public school has parents who don't care.  Just as you assume this there are people who assume things about you and your choices.  You are not the only parent who is involved in your child's life the way you are.  I have many many friends who are teachers in public schools and I can tell you they are far more trained than anyone realizes.  They are concerned and they do teach every child no matter how big their class is.  Also, in public school in 1st and 2nd grade the class size has to be UNDER 20 kids...again lower than most private schools.  My friends also say their biggest battle is not teaching the kids but dealing with parents.  Food for thought. 

"Next, there are boudaries set by the district on w hat they can teach your child that do not exist in private school.  In private school (I found this out after we checked out private schools and from a teacher) they can teach whatever they see fit."

That is an excellent point. Private schools that get no public funding can teach whatever nutty thing they want and that worries me greatly.
 
November 18, 2006, 4:02 pm CST

11/24 Great School Debate

ok, I think I responded to every one's posting here,LOL.  I think the imporant thing is to know that our kids are getting the best education possible,that they are happy, learning, fullfilled, having fun, developing physically, socially, spiritually (for those of us who have that goal), mentally and whatever else is imporant, if they are not, then we as parents and even teachers need to figure out the solution and if they are, then we as parents and teachers are doing our jobs.  kids can succeed in all these options and we are very fortuante to live in a country that allows us options and choices when it comes to our families, we are not robots and in my opinion that is a good thing,LOL.I am done debating this subject, already spent too much time on it. Enjoy your kids every one, Life is short.
 
First | Prev | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Next | Last