Home schooling vs. the state


schoolPopular culture by its very nature is a driver of homogeneity; the conscious individual whose views sit outside the norm, either has to fit-in or act outside what is deemed normal: neither is an easy option. This is troubling, but not insurmountable. Popular culture only becomes seriously oppressive when the state legislates.

This Labour government has been especially bad at dealing with difference, and its latest stance against home schooling is indicative of this lack of tolerance and understanding. Specifically, the government is considering forcing home educating families to have to register annually and demonstrate they are providing a suitable education. It would mean that local Councils would be given the power to force children into school against their parent’s wishes.

The BBC reports that: “Some teaching unions say they feel home educated children do not develop certain skills such as co-operation, conflict management or relationship-building." The irony of teaching unions holding up these virtues is comically ironic given their track record for militant power battles between themselves and the government. If that’s the kind of co-operation, conflict management or relationship-building a state education can give you, I am not at all surprised people prefer to privately educate their children or teach them at home in increasing numbers.

The choice to teach children at home is an issue that distinguishes the Conservative from the Libertarian. All on the left are of course behind the state’s stranglehold over our children, but many on the right feel an equal compulsion to control. As such, those that do not want their children educated by the state may still be in peril once Labour are eventually turfed out.