Sunday, September 12, 2004

Bad news for home schoolers

Here is some bad news for Cap'n Holly and home-schooled children from the StrategyPage. Since StrategyPage posts have severe "link rot", I have copied the post here.

September 12, 2004: Discipline can be learned, and it must be practiced. That’s the findings of a recent Department of Defense study of whether kids who graduated from “alternative” high schools, or were home schooled, did as well in military service as graduates from traditional high schools. Turns out that the home schooled and alternative high school students did not last in the service as well as high school grads. One thing you learn by finishing traditional high school, is how to get along in a group, a discipline yourself to get things done in a group, and to persevere as a group. In fact, kids who spent four years in high school, but did not pass all their final exams, did better. The Pentagon did not release the percentage differences, but is advising recruiters to take these factors into account when deciding which prospective recruits to spend their time on.

So, according to the Pentagon, if you you home-school your children (like the Cap'n) and want them to join the military after high-school, you may want to look into letting them waste a few years time in the "poob-lik skewl" system, but I'll let the Cap'n respond on the validity of the Pentagon's objections.


At 7:39 AM, Blogger Captain Holly said...

I haven't seen the study, so I can't comment on how the research was done. My son is going to be too tall for the military, anyway, so it's a moot point as far as he's concerned.

A couple of observations:

1. I wouldn't be surprised if this were a slanted study. The DOD has always had a bias against homeschoolers; they just recently recognized homeschooling as academically equivalent to public schools, and that was only after big-time teeth pulling on the part of Congress and homeschoolers. So it would not be at all surprising to find out the "study" was colored by this prejudice.

2. This may be what can be called a "Michael New Effect". If you remember, Spc. New was the soldier who refused to wear the powder-blue beret of the UN during the Clinton Administration and got canned for it. While it may be that homeschoolers are more independent-minded than the average publik skooler, it may also be that homeschoolers are less likely to obey stupid or illegal orders, a la Abu Grahib guards. That could be an advantage, as opposed to a disadvantage.

At 3:40 PM, Blogger The Great El-ahrairah said...

I could also be that they are lumping God-fearing, conservative home-schoolers in with the other commune-style kinds of schooling where children are "taught" to live like hippies and always question authority.


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