Sen. Osmond introduces 3 bills to end compulsory education
I am concerned that there is a fundamental lack of responsibility, unless
periodic, perhaps yearly, examinations are given to home-school students.
Home-school students should have the option to attend special after school
classes such as instrumental, or choral music classes in the elementary grades.
Secondary schools would be problematic for home-schoolers.
I have a relative who home-schools her child here in Utah. He is nine years and
still can't read, and I mean can't read at all. These people are
creating a future welfare problem and there needs to be some kind of
accountability on homeschoolers.
Senator Osmond seems intent on making public education less public and
(potentially) less educational.The concept of proficiency testing
has merit, but private colleges have used that to give credit where it was not
really due. We need to use that tool sparingly and with some caution.As to home schooling. I have known several home schoolers. Only a few seemed
competent to teach the subjects. I have seen kids who were not able to do much
math or not able to read (at age 8-9) yet they were getting no intervention as
the parent just thought they were late bloomers.Teaching is like any
other profession. It takes education and/or experience to be good at it and not
everyone who tries it will be proficient (just like everyone is not an
accountant or an artist). To believe that every mom or dad who wants
their kid home schooled is up to the task or that curriculum (no matter how
good) can provide what a good teacher can is simply naive.
I support some accountability measures for parents along with teachers and
students. Right now it seems that the load is on the teachers. I have students
who are frequently absent as well as those who move in right before big tests -
they can't pass the tests, so I am considered to be at fault. If parents do
not send their kids to school, don't follow through with homework,
don't come to conferences, etc., they should lose their income tax
exemption for the child. Or at least, they should have to pay the costs of
As a public school parent and teacher, I can see both sides of the argument.
Bravo to Sen. Osmond who is trying to do something! As a teacher, I struggle
daily with students with behavior problems beyond their control. Plus due to
federal mandates, when I see a student struggle, I have wait until a student is
2 grade levels behind their peers before they can be considered for testing for
resource services. So when students struggle, I end up dealing in the end with
more behavior problems or disengagement. In a Title 1 school I have seen both
ends of the spectrum. Parents who care deeply, but don't know how to help
their kids, parents involved in so much of their own drama they have no time for
their children, and parents who simply don't care and just need a safe
place for their kid to "hang". If you are going to have children you
should not expect a handout...and this should also include public education. It
is so unfair to well behaved children with engaged parents who constantly have
to wait for their peers who lack motivation, discipline, and have parents who
treat school as a daycare!
FTA "A Parents Bill of Rights would be created, affirming a parent's
power to have their child repeat a grade or test out of subjects for credit. But
students who fail to achieve academic proficiency would be required to
participate in remediation, the cost of which would be charged in full or in
part to their parents."One thing not addressed here, is
concerning those students that are slow because of physical or mental issues.
Are they or their parents instantly punished under this 'proposal'?
In addition: Is public education now considered 'a government
handout' that makes us part of Romney's 47 percent? Before trying to
dismantle public education, go live in areas where a majority of the population
has no access to education, then compare the resultant state and consider how
the U.S. could prevent becoming a third world country without universal
Hmmm?Our country has:* high poverty & welfare.* high unemployment* half its people depending on government to feed
them.* high crime rate.Looking at the evidence. What does this say about our government controlled schools?
@ Worf:"What does this say about our government controlled
schools?" You question should be: What does this say about the
PARENTS of these failing students that are causing high poverty & welfare,
high unemployment, and high crime rates?You are blaming one aspect
of society for the downfall of it's citizens. The blame should be on the
parents!Sen. Osmond is right to try to get parents involved in the
education of their children. Too many kids are in schools only because they are
required to be. They don't care about high stakes testing, grades, etc.
and neither do their parents (or rather 'parent').
We need more and better parental involvement in education but at the heart of
this is the premise of free and fair education for all. We must maintain this
if we hope to keep up with the rest of the developed world. We cannot just cast
aside the non-performers and hope things will turn out right.I
applaud Mr Osmond for his efforts to better education but we need a more
comprehensive look at this. Education must maintain a public focus or our
country will be in deep trouble in the future. Education cannot become a haves
vs have-nots scenario.
Is there any language in these bills to require employers to offer employees
time off (paid or unpaid) to attend the required parent teacher meetings?
"The concept of proficiency testing has merit, but private colleges have
used that to give credit where it was not really due. We need to use that tool
sparingly and with some caution."This begs the question of what
the purpose of an education is. In my book, it is to provide proficiency in a
given subject. If that knowledge was gained either through living in another
place and learning the language that way, or an engineering skill learned by
actually working in the field - why would book or in class leaning trump that? I
know a lot of people more proficient in Spanish that their learning happened via
immersion in the language can speak it much better than people who spent years
in school "learning" it.I don't discount classroom
learning - but it is by far not the only, or the best way to learn many
To "1covey" home school students are supposed to have access to before
and after school programs, and can spend part of the day being home schooled,
and part of the day at the public school. For Jr. High and Highschool students
some homeschoolers have english, math, and history at home, then spend half of
their day at the public school for electives and science.What needs
to be done is for the state to figure out a way to reimburse parents for each
home schooled child, since it saves the state money.To "Kings
Court" and "Semi-Strong" what you have seen is the exception. Home
schooled kids typically do better in college and on standardized tests than
their public school peers. See "Home-school students do well first time in
college" in the DN.
No bad students, only bad teachers.
Under his bill I would be forced to attend parent teacher conferences? I
don't like this. I don't think such conferences are always needed.
When my child is doing well it isn't necessary.Parents who have
under performing kids would have to pay for this themselves? Too often such
kids have the type of parents that can't afford this. Those kind of parents
typically don't have much education and have to work 1 1/2 or 2 jobs.Before such measures are imposed on the entire state, why not impose
them on Sen Osmonds district as a test case and see how it works out?
I think the unintended consequence of something like this would be to drive the
underachieving students into homeschooling situations, to avoid the extra
expenses. State Welfare would probably increase as well, to accomodate
unemployed parents, though in many cases homeschooled kids don't actually
learn from their parents during the school day. Of course if the
underachievers all left the system, there would be a short-term gain in academic
proficiency, but there will always be underachievers. That's what happens
when you rank people by percentages... there will always be someone who scores
lower than the average... in fact half the class... I just think it
would have a poor effect. I also think that every kid has a period of their
educational experience where they get a poor teacher. In this system
there's no accountability given to teachers, since the focus is on parents.
Not sure I agree with that either. I don't see a lot of deep
thought put into this change, it seems more a reaction based upon unproven
Good policy is built on the norms not the abnormal. There will always be fringe
examples where special attention is needed. It is part of the human condition.
It is immutable. For those who suggest otherwise I ask them to provide an
example where I am wrong. The bottom line is we make the best policies by
providing for the broadest possible circumstances bounded by only safety and
cost. Situations that fall outside the boundaries are best handled on a
case-by-case basis. Ergo, in education, home schooling is a viable alternative
as long as students stay up with their public school contemporaries. If a parent
is unable to teach for whatever reason then, on a case-by-case basis, the
student should be placed where he or she can learn. The state is well within its
rights to demand every child be given the opportunity to become educated.
Sen. Osmond wnats to make all these changes, however he seems to have not paid
attention to our math and science scores. We are not even in the ranking and
what Sen. osmond wants to do is dum us down even more. Why is he not focusing on
improving the Public School System. I'm sure that Hong Kong and Korea do
not have the same focus as Sen. Osmond yet they are doing very well.
UtahBlueDevi,First, sorry. I meant to say for profit colleges.Second, agreed that education is to provide proficiency. Just as time
in the classroom can be abused to be confused with proficiency so too can
proficiency testing be abused to mean an absolute minimal exposure (just enough
for credit). It could be used as a way to save money by saying the kid is
sufficiently educated when that is not accurate.RedShirt,Maybe. But I have seen it in two distinct regions of the country. Don't
get me wrong. Some of the kids do okay. But many get tossed into the public
system after several years of parental failure and then have to play catch-up.
If you were monitoring their struggles, you might ascribe them (incorrectly) to
the public school. In more than one case I have seen, the TV seemed to be the
primary "learning" tool.I think home schooling can work.
But parents need to be vetted and the kids regularly tested to see that they are
learning. Also, the best ones I have seen are in small groups where the parents
share the load (one teaches science, another English, etc.).
@apocalypse & Johnny Triumph:You two, are not hitting the nail
on the head!The parents you are talking about, attended to the same
government controlled schools as their children!If you want to be
enlightened. Visit a third, or fourth grade classroom, and witness how basic
math is being taught. See how much of science classes are on the negative
effects of man on the environment. Then there's history, and reading. Do
you see strong, or weak, patriotism in our country?
I don't understand how they can compare countries in the first place. In
China, they only test a small portion of school age children. All of ours are
tested and the results aren't too far apart. You can't even do a fair
comparison because of this. It is the same for many of the other countries
people try and compare us to. We test ALL of our school age students when they
test only the ones who have passed tests to continue in school. I want to know
why, when America has led the world in inventions and creativity,they want to
change us to be more like other countries? Why are we trying to throw away a
system that has made America the most advanced nation on the planet?
This has got to be the dumbest thing ever. In every one of these proposed ideas
is the word affidavit or required. If you want to hold a child/parent
accountable. Then quite this no child left behind thing and if a kid wants to
let schooling go, well then that kid ends up falling back to the parents and
they are forced to deal with it.Also, I know a few teachers have
posted on here, and many teachers are good teachers. However, how about holding
the teachers accountable for "teaching", I am sick and tired of getting
paper packets stapled together with homework and when I ask my kid about it,
they say the teacher never talked about it. Then when I do go speak to the
teacher, they say, "Oh that is just to see where there level is at."
Then why put so much emphasis on the paper for grades. Your a teacher so teach!
I am fortunate enough to have two kids who are straight A students, but some
weight needs to be put on the teachers to do their jobs as well.Quit
blaming parents and trying to get more money out of them.
In their race to gather the last few remnants of wealth from the American
people, the rich and powerful, businessmen and other uncaring souls seem to be
falling all over each other. For the last few decades public
education is a favorite target for their agenda. The object is to dumb down the
people so that they will be easy to fool and fall for any scam that comes along.
Some military general is supposed to have said “Idiots make
the best soldiers”. Have you noticed all the effort to aggrandize and
puff up the military people? Have you also noticed all the military we have
spread around the world with the main mission of supporting business.
Let's see, parents of public school children would incur new
legal/financial responsibility, i.e. more government control. However, parents
of home schooled children are exempted from any responsibility. So apparently,
parents can choose to home school their children. Send them fishing for 12
years and then dump them on the welfare state - and no one would be able to do a
thing about it. Brilliant. But there is more, teachers would be subject to the
whims of parents in scheduling conferences and the same parents could also
apparently demand which teachers teach their kids. This is not about reforming
schools. It's about punishing teachers and parents. If Senator O wants
schools to do better, maybe he and his colleagues should stop harassing our
school system and let it go about doing its job. Every time the clowns impose
the next big fix, schools have to retreat, create new administration, and
improvise a new way to teach and at the same time dance to the tune of the right
wing lunatic band.
All three of these ideas should like bad ideas to me. Homeschoolers
should have to meet a common standard. Parents should not be billed
because their kid is behind - that's the school's fault.Schools need more money, and also need to be more accountable. I should be
able to trust them to educate my kids without becomeing a teachers aid myself.
When I send them to college, will I be responsible for tracking my kids homework
" Do you see strong, or weak, patriotism in our country?"Schools are there to teach patriotism? Almost sounds like were talking about
Soviet Block schools…. make sure children properly love their country.
Good grief…. We don't need our schools teaching our kids about
religion, and we don't need them to be teaching them that they should have
blind allegiance to country either.That is the parents job. That is
the role of community as a whole. Kids will learn this from example and
experience. Not the classroom."See how much of science classes
are on the negative effects of man on the environment"And the
last time you sat through a semester of science was when? And what percentage
of that was about the negative effects of man? Please!
To "Semi-Strong" or "Dave M" the same thing can be said about
the public school system. I have relatives that were moved along from grade to
grade without being able to read. The teachers didn't care, and said that
eventually they would pick it up. Eventually the public school
"graduates" them and kickes them out into the world where they have to
catch up on basic skills that they should have learned.The point is,
no matter which system you go to, you can always find bad apples. What you
should be asking is why is it that home schooling is growing so fast? What is
turning people off from the public schools?
How about an extra tax on anybody in Utah with the last name of Osmond.
"At this festive season of the year, Mr. Scrooge we'd like to make some
provision for the poor and destitute..."Sanctions on parents
whose children under-perform will only get children yanked from school to be
"home-schooled" in perhaps less-than ideal circumstances.Offering cash to home-school will open the floodgates of parents keeping kids
home for profit. These program ideas never end up helping the people intended
for assistance. Here in Wisconsin, vouchers were expanded across
the state, even forcing them on districts where the voters and boards were not
asking for them. The result? Two-thirds of those who are receiving vouchers
are kids who were already enrolled in private school. So, the program that was
sold on helping the poor is just another entitlement for the rich. And who pays
for these vouchers? The local property taxes have to kick in the balance, while
not receiving any state money. For Milwaukee, a city that truly needs more
help, vouchers cost the district over $8 million dollars a year. And
that's taking money away from poor and needy children. One more thing, MPS
still outperforms the private and charter schools there.
@Big Momma:There is a comparison. For example.At our
local hospital here in Texas, eighty percent of the skilled staff are from
other countries.Engineers from other countries are designing our
cars transmissions, engines, etc.In the booming, technological
manufacturing area of Edison, New Jersey,--seventy percent of the population are
from India, and China. Many from India, and the Philipines (sp) are taking
skilled employment here. A third of our college graduates are from other
countries as well.IMO. The only way to improve our education,--is to
get the feds out.
RedShirtCalTech,The reasons I often see are that people feel their
kid is getting picked on or cannot handle other social aspects. Unfortunately,
the relative isolation of home schooling does nothing for this.I
understand wanting to protect them. But the world will still be there when they
are 18 and need to either be working or going to school. Will they have the
tools to adjust?If they have had lots of other social interaction,
sure. But many I have seen get little more than TV, their siblings, and one day
a week at a church. Again, the larger group schools do a better job here. But
even in those circumstances I find the groups very homogeneous with little
racial or other diversity. How does that child later deal with the diversity in
the real world?
"figure out a way to reimburse parents for each home schooled
child..."No Redshirt. Not. one. cent. Everybody pays for
education. Even you. You and your ilk are always decrying spending but are the
first in line with their hand out.
How about we just eliminate child tax credits and place the financial burden of
educating children more squarely on those whose children are being educated?
Seems that would help parents be more invested while not placing any unfair
burden on people of lower socioeconomic status.
If a kid is behind in school, it's the school's fault. Really?
Parents have no responsibility there at all. Hmmm. Might in some cases, we
might even say it was genetics as some students are born with learning
disabilities? I mean all kindergarten teachers are blessed with every single
student knowing how to read and write, right? I think the lack of deep thought,
especially coming mostly from the Right side of the aisle, is disconcerting.So my solution is this, let's actually fund education like we
supposedly care about our children. Let's get elementary classes of 15-20
students and have secondary classes of 20-25 students. Let's give our
teachers support such as aides, technology, and supplies that they need and get
ALL of our students out of dilapidated buildings. Let's increase teacher
pay and restore benefits and send a message they are valued, thus in a sense
saying our children are valued because we value those that instruct them. I say
actually try this and see if it actually works. Then maybe we can do
In a civilized society when all else fails the people look to their government
for help. If the government is blocked from providing the needed service, that
civilized society will fail. There are no examples of a society made up of
independent individuals or even individual families that has accomplished any
thing more than mere existence. A mother may be able to teach her
young about proper physical survival, how to operate the tools of life and may
even understand that the greatest and most important lesson of all is that which
teaches How learn. If we want to have more than mere existence our education
has to reach out to the limits of the universe. To get that kind of education
takes the efforts of a very large set of teachers. When we allow
the greed of unscrupulous leaders to limit the education of our children, we are
defeating the purpose of life.
Worf. The reason you don’t draw the right conclusions from
your example is because you seem to have a problem with analysis. The reason
for the high percentage of foreign workers is not because they are better
educated but simply because they cost less.
I agree with the comments about accountability in home school. I too know of
several situations where the student is "homeschooled" but really is
anything but homeschooled. The first person I know of was in junior high and her
mother pulled her out of school to babysit and had no intention of sending her
back even though she begged. She only went back to school after a year of
staying home(the girl in junior high) after DCFS they mandated it to the mother.
Her mother had other options that she could afford she just didn't want to
pay.The 2nd situation I know of is a family of homeschooled students
that still can't read. What accountability or checking up is there that
homeschool students are learning and meeting minimum learning requirements?
@Ultra Bob--not in this case.A football team will pay higher for a
good quarterback, or running back. When it comes to water boys,--they'll
get the ones who can be paid less.When it comes to engineers,
they'll pay extra to get the best. @UtahBlueDevil--you're
blind if you don't see schools teaching discrimination, and contention.
Most are blind to it also, but I could easily provide tons of data to make my
point. And yes, many are weak patriots because of what they learn, and
don't learn in school.Parents, and the community are puppets of
our school system. That's where they were taught, formed their thoughts,
opinions, and grew up.With the combination of standardized testing,
and accountability, our beloved government has a strong hold on educating, and
molding they're citizens.Wish I was wrong, and crazy, but
I'm the kind of person who see's thing as they are.Don't take my word for it. The evidence is all around.
worf Half the country depends on the government to feed them. Really. Can
you back this statement up with valid data. I seriously doubt it. Second
comment. The government forcing students to be patriotic sounds like communism
@ WorfThat wasn't my point. Other countries have smart people, but
they are not trying to educate every single child. The successful ones move
onto high school and college. I just don't see how we compare every single
one of our kids against the cream of the crop of other nations. I don't
care how much money or the greatness of teachers you throw at some kids, they
just aren't going to do good in school. I had friends in high school who
were just plain not good at school, and nothing was going to change that. You
could spend a million bucks on that one kid and they weren't going to do
good in school. Socrates himself couldn't teach them. All kids are not
built academically equal. Other countries that we are compared to don't
standardize test these students because they are already out of the system or
have never been in it. I am sorry, but my academically challenged friends
wouldn't stand up against the brightest and smartest of other nations then
and they won't now on standardized tests used in comparisons.
To "Bebyebe" but homeschoolers pay twice. They pay once with their
taxes for public education, then they pay again when they buy the supplies for
home school. I don't want a handout, just a reimbursement for some of the
money that it takes to home school.To "Semi-Strong" you
should see the home schooling networks here in Utah. There are many groups that
offer "elective" classes where the kids can socialize. There are also
groups that get together weekly at the park or other places to let their kids
interact. There are also groups that put on "field trips" that end up
having 100 people show up.In my case home schooling isn't about
protecting my kids, but is about getting them a proper education. The public
schools fail in teaching my kids that truely are above average. Rather than
seeing my kid used as a tool for pulling up the average on the standardized
tests, I can challenge my kids and see them educated on an appropriate level.
I'm always amused at parents who say that they homeschool their kids
because public schools don't "challenge" their kids enough.
Translation: my kids are smarter than your kids.
RedShirtCalTechPasedena, CAThe tax exemption for kids is a
reimbursement for part of the expense of raising kids. Think of it as a
reimbursement for being taxed for other kids schooling. Since you think your
kids are totally yours, shouldn’t you foot the bill for their costs. Do
you expect the government to reimburse you for the food, clothing, shelter and
other things that you voluntarily took on when you decided to have kids.
To "Ultra Bob" the government gives me a tax exemption for just birthing
a child. The idea is that it encourages more kids to be born, and is
theoretically supposed to be a partial reimbursement for the food, clothing, and
shelter that they require.What is the difference between a tax
exemption for home schooling a child, and birthing a child? The government
needs more highly paid workers, and investing in homeschooling is worth doing
because they typically do better in college, which can mean higher paying jobs
and more taxes in the future.
RedShirt,With your logic, I should get a tax exemption as well
because my kids are all adults, so I am getting the same direct benefit as the
parent that home schools their child. Using that same logic, I don't use
the public library, so I want to be exempt from the tax increase that my
community pays for our new library. I don't use any of the county
recreation facilities so I want to be exempt from that tax and so on and so
forth.The other thing, lets get real about this whole home school
and college thing. I do not dispute that home school students do well in
college, but what percent of home school students attend college? What
percentage of students who are home schooled at some point end up back in the
public schools and then public schools try to catch up what has been neglected,
but who's scores count against those schools? Lets tell both
sides of the story for a change.
To "Fred44" if your children are adults, and you have to spend money for
their support because they are incapable of supporting themselves, then yes, you
should (and do) get a tax exemption.Your library analogy is wrong,
you are basing things off of use. Lets look at it in terms of caring for
children. If you and your spouse both work, you can send your child to daycare.
Now, if only one of you works, while the other stays home do you think that you
should get a tax break for staying home and raising your own children? You get
a tax break to hire others to care for your children.According to
"Home-Schooled Teens Ripe for College" in USAToday, home schooled kids
graduate from college at a rate of "66.7 percent compared to 57.5 [public
school educated kids]percent—and earned higher grade point averages along
the way."What about the kids in public school that have been
neglected and are "graduated" when they finish attending highschool, who
has to pay for them to catch up with the rest of the world?