Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Homeschoolers Need Not Apply

Back in 2005 I wrote a post called Conviction or Preference.  At that time, I asked at hypothetical question based on my knowledge of national standards, 

If your child or children were prevented from getting into college because they didn't have the right credentials due to the fact that they were homeschooled would you still homeschool them through high school or would change what you are doing to meet those new requirements.

Before you question the validity of question, let me give you a little more information. (I have so much research on this but finding it on the internet is difficult and time consuming.) Many schools disctricts are moving toward an "endorsed diploma" or "certificate of initial mastery" (CIM) as a part of a high school diploma.
Nearly, ten years ago it seem unimaginable that a homeschool student would be rejected for anything or that their diploma would be challenged.  But that was then and this is now.  Thanks to national standards, now known as Common Core, the validity of "nontraditional" or homeschool diploma is being challenged.  Consider two recent news stories
While I acknowledge that K12 is "pubic school" it is still a "non-traditional diploma" and the same issues apply.

In 2010, colleges were required to determine the "validity" of a high school diploma for federal funding. The validity of my own sons' diplomas were challenged by the US Marines.   I know  of other students who were rejected from cosmetology school and employment in heathcare field because they had a homeschool diploma.  These stories are not isolated but part of a growing trend to standardize education and create a seamless pathway from P-20.  Only those that meet the requirements set forth in this new system will be able to advance. 

The system is not complete yet, but Marc Tucker an early and strong proponent of a managed system for a managed economy describes the system based on exams or assessments.
In such a system, the purpose of the exams is to determine whether a student is qualified to go on to work or to the next stage of his or her education.  The standards for moving on are clear. The question is whether the student has met them.  Because the colleges, universities and employers have agreed to the standards in advance, there is no dispute about what the students’ performance on the exams means or about what it takes to move on.
--> Excellence for All How Board Examination Systems and Education Gateways  Will Greatly Improve High School Student Performance, Prepare More Students for Success in College, Enable Graduates to Get Good Jobs  and Reduce the Costs of Our Education System 

 Assessment providers ACT, Inc.and College Board, both partners in the development of the Common Core, are working  is working with states to make sure that states have the assessments and state longitudinal data system necessary to take a child from cradle-to-career...P-20.   Anyone outside the system with a "non-traditional" diploma need not apply. 


Chris said...

I find it sad that you would use this personal propaganda to promote rhetoric designed to excite the home school masses. There is very little proof or substance and a lot of hearsay and opinin. First, finding info on the internet to support a claim is far from difficult or time consuming...unless it doesn't exist. Second, common core is not the issue with homeschooling diploma acceptance. The problem is parents who homeschool but don't actually teach their kids anything. Expecting kids to have an education that at least matches public school education is perfectly acceptable. But everyone goes bonkers when there is even a mention of requiring basic standards for home school students. We have done this to ourselves by protecting our autonomy so fiercely that there is no choice but to ban us because there is not proof that we have accomplished the basic requirements. A few bad homeschooling apples...have indeed spoiled it for us all.

Anonymous said...

expecting kids to have an education that 'matches' public school? have you seen the average test scores for public schools? Every family has a different goal or definition of what education is. some want math and science geniuses, others want kind helpers who are going to work in humanitarian fields. How are there going to be guidelines for that when every family focuses on different things?

also, if you ask me I think common core is way to easy so I don't fight against it because it's a joke of standards that will was made so everyone can finish high school.

Kim Seim said...

If homeschooled students were required to take a test to validate their diploma as Chris seemed to point out, that would be fair. Yet the author seems to be pointing out that a homeschooler's diploma may be seen as invalid regardless of the skill level of the student. That doesn't seem fair, especially when homeschoolers often have a higher skill level than those in a classroom setting. A homeschooling teen (at 16 or older) may take the GED to receive a highschool diploma, though that may not be an adequate solution for many students. Regardless of the answer, God will give us the victory!