I often vent my frustrations with the religious right, but an article by Dana Goldstein entitled "Liberals, Don't Homeschool Your Kids," serves to remind me that as much as I don't fit into the religious homeschooling community, neither do I entirely fit into the liberal community at-large. In fact, as a nonreligious homeschooler, I often feel like I don't "fit in" anywhere.
I believe all American children deserve access to good, free, secular education, but that does not mean I am going to send my own kids to a school that cannot meet their needs. The suggestion, as in this article, that my choice to homeschool is at odds with my belief in public education is as off-base as suggesting I am not a feminist because I choose to be a stay at home mom. I stay at home with my kids and homeschool them because it works for my family, and our current situation, and not because I think it's the only suitable parenting and education choice for every family.
Goldstein posits the question "Could such a go-it-alone ideology ever be truly progressive—by which I mean, does homeschooling serve the interests not just of those who are doing it, but of society as a whole?" First, let me say that in making pretty much every parenting decision, I am not thinking of society as a whole, but about my children in particular. Then let me finish by asking this, does society as a whole really benefit more by me sending my child to a mediocre public school in a below-average state, or by teaching her at home to be a strong, well-educated, freethinking individual?