There were over 300 kids, who are educated *outside the system* in New York City, at this year’s Central Park picnic. Last year there were substantially less.
And I heard the other day that *filing* (to opt out of NYC government schools) was up a full 10% from 2011.
Okay, these numbers might not seem impressive to people in Texas, California, and Florida where parent-led education is far more prevalent…
Still this continued, rapid growth in the Northeast is important because, well, this is where the influence-peddlers reside. Over the last few years there’s been a palpable shift in the tone of Big Media publications that had been previously very hostile towards the idea that children can thrive in individualized, unregulated learning programs.
So why is this movement growing so strongly? (Don’t for a second believe the *2 million nationwide* number. It’s more like 3 million kids!)
Well for one thing, dissatisfaction with the school system is running rampant. Almost every single family my wife and I know airs their copious, vehement complaints when in our company – everything from unhappiness with bullying/teasing, to unchallenging material, to too much homework, to complaints about the *pick-up* line, and to having to hire expensive tutors like myself to compensate for poor instruction.
Here’s the deal….I predict things will only continue to get FAR WORSE.
First of all, schools never really *worked* naturally. The mass compulsory system is only 150 years old and it only seemed to work early on because it was subsidized by male chauvinism. What do I mean by that?
Well, up until the last couple of decades, all the smartest women became teachers. But today they become doctors, lawyers, investment bankers, entrepreneurs, etc.
Secondly, parents work more these days. Not long ago, there were more stay-at-home parents AND for the working parent, a *long day* would have meant being home by 7 or 8pm. But now many parents work so much that they NEVER even see their children. Many have to travel, faraway, often. (In fact my wife just flew to Zurich, and will be working there all week long.)
This increased work has all but eliminated parent-child interaction, the little bit there used to be anyway that served to reconnect the family.
But now the home is empty, kids are *managed* by strangers, organized activities, and the television, and instead of it being the anchor-place of a family, it’s now merely a boardinghouse for ghosts.
So is it any wonder that the problems children are facing in school – whatever they may be – seem more overwhelming than ever before? Is it any wonder that parent frustration is boiling over?
I was articulating these ideas the other day….when a young mother interjected and corrected me.
She said, “Now the SMARTEST women don’t become doctors, lawyers, and entrepreneurs….now they stay home to EDUCATE and RAISE their children!”
Indeed. Smartest men too…