Homeschooling Alone Cannot Solve the Education Crisis
These are the children that homeschooling will not work for. They're lost in the system and there really is no way out for them. A young woman who at 15 attempted suicide because she saw no other way out of an abusive relationship. A young man who writes of his previous addiction:

When a soldier filled with strength,
becomes a victim of the game,
Many things change.
People see your face and turn away.
They wanna love ya,
They wanna hug ya,
But they simply can't trust ya,
Because you're filled with an evil product.

This is why I do not feel the church can give up on public education. Not that we can somehow change the system with its inherent flaws. However, unlike many, I do not think children going away from home to learn is necessarily the root of the problem. Children in Jesus' day were educated outside the home in the synagogue (scroll to the bottom). The difference was in accountability and purpose. The father was the authority in education and the purpose was to learn Torah.

There are working solutions out there. Earlier today, I highligted the Carver Academy. That is a model I sincerely believe that churches should consider as they spend millions of dollars in building projects, including youth gyms, private schools and coffee bars.

There is a second model gaining a bit of attention recently. Community schools, such as Blue Ox, are being highlighted as Bill Gates and others have come behind them in support. And they are producing some impressive statistics. Some of these schools accept only youth who have been expelled from a tradtional school and still somehow maintain the same, and in some cases higher, graduation rates. Their purposes are wholly secular: to prepare youth for the workplace.

But shouldn't the church offer something? At the founding of our free and public education, the goals of equipping the youth with knowledge of the scripture was at its core. Several laws required communities to offer schools so that all of its citizenry might have the opportunity to learn to read the scriptures. These schools were not necessarily set up by the church or run by the church. The problem is not so much that the church stepped out of education and let the state take over, but that the state began changing its goals in the early 1800's.

As a Christian, I agree whole heartedly that we should not leave our children in the system which has developed. Most Christian schools sadly have gone the same way. They generally service a clientele a little higher on the socio-economic ladder so are often not plagued with quite the same problems as the public schools. Still, they are oftentimes no different from secular schools in their character and methodology. And what of those who cannot afford it? Or whose situation precludes homeschooling? Most of the children in my class came from Christian homes. 100% were minorities. 98% were on public assistance. 20% lived with someone other than their biological parents. Several lived with only one parent. And that one parent quite likely was a teenager when she gave birth. I don't think homeschooling would have been a viable option for any of them.

We set up missions all over the world and educate youth in the gospel of Christ. We pay for classrooms in Africa, India and South America where teachers instruct indigenous populations in the scriptures as well as academic subjects. Why don't we show any interest in this in our own communities in our own nation?

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