Missouri is a hot bed of anticipated educational reform. Not much different than the rest of the country, actually. Since the inception of the Obama administration and its trend to nationalize “everything,” Arne Duncan, his education secretary, has been instrumental in pushing for the same in education. In Missouri, the legislature has struggled with finding a way to solve the problems of its abysmally poor performing public education system by way of various “school choice” and “educational reform” initiatives.
Why should homeschooling families be worried about what goes on in the public education realm? With Arne Duncan at the helm of the department of education, it may not be long before private schools and homeschooling will fall under the same mandates as public education. Common core standards have been adopted by most states in the country and Missouri has fallen in line with the trend. The promotion of Charter Schools is the latest school reform, flavor of the month in Missouri, but they promise nothing in the betterment of education as they are sure to fall under the same common core mandates as the rest of public education.
So, what’s a parent to do about the education of the nation’s future generations? Well, perhaps it is time to think outside the traditional education reform box, elect some non-establishment leaders and consider giving the decisions and responsibility of education back to the people. Bill Randles, candidate for governor in Missouri spoke to a group of concerned voters, recently, and thinks the people should make educational decisions for their children and their tax dollars should be directed as they see fit, for educational purposes, not the government. He proposes a voucher system for Missouri in addition to amending the Missouri Constitution to change how the budget addresses education.
Homeschoolers have always been wary of vouchers and HSLDA has issued a statement on their stance regarding the issue. Strings attached has always been a major stumbling block in wide spread acceptance of vouchers. Randles feels he can devise a system that will be free of the ‘strings attached’ problem and just give taxpayers their money back, to spend as they see fit.
Homeschoolers need to engage, int he current election cycle, and educate themselves about who will best represent them, and advocate for the freedom to choose the appropriate education for their own children.