WHEN, the World Home Education Network
Abstract: This article is compiled out of
contributions made by WHEN, the World Home Education
Network, in earlier discussions. WHEN argues that many
educational problems are fabricated by the compulsion,
monopolies and privileges of the education system.
A. WHEN, the World Home Education Network
WHEN advocates the following changes:
- Laws that force children to attend school, against
the will of themselves and of their parents, should be
- Many educational institutions are closed shops. They
should be open to competition.
- Many occupations are only open to people with
specific educational qualifications. They should
similarly be opened up.
People should stop looking up to academic qualifications.
There are many issues that follow from the above three
points. As an example, why do
homeschooling families have to pay tax to support the
school habits of other families?
The above three points will therefore be worked out below.
To a large extent, these seem political decisions.
However, the third point in particular addresses a change that has to be made in the hearts and minds of people.
This is why the all thse points should be discussed widely; and this is why WHEN offers this
article free for broad discussion.
B. Compulsory School.
The abolition of laws that make school compulsory fits in with
WHEN's policy to treat children as human beings, rather than
as imperfect, naughty little robots that need to be taught a lesson.
Abolition of compulsory school also addresses other issues, such
as socialization and the question of who is qualified to teach.
Because the majority of people send their children to
school, to organized sports and all kinds of
disciplinary organizations, there is hardly any
activity for people who do not like this kind of stuff.
You can call it tough luck, but isn't it tragic that
these people have to pay the salaries of the very
people that they oppose, i.e. teachers who indoctrinate
their children. It is like the slaves who have to pay
their very torturer.
Children who go to school are
exhausted after a day of bullying and nonsense - when
they come home, they have no will to interact in a nice
way with other children. If they are given a free hand,
they act like a pack of animals. This attitude is
purely a result of the mentality that is imposed on
children at school.
Parents of children who go to school do send their
children to all kinds of activities. But such
activities are so like school . . . Organized team
sports are full of rules, there is a referee, etc. At
camps there often is a disgusting disciplinarian
mentality. Look at scouts, church activities, it is all
so similar to school. Children are not allowed to do
what they like, not allowed to talk to each other, just
listen to the teacher, the master and shut up.
Even creative activities such as dance and art are full
of this shit. Children sit in a classroom all making
the same horrible object at craftwork, imitating the
teacher. At dance courses, children stand in rows, not
allowed to make a sound or movement until the teacher
gives the command.
School clearly spreads its stink well beyond school
hours and not merely during homework! Because of this
horrible mentality that permeates society, families who
do not want to be part of this have to suffer. For
homeschoolers, there often is no alternative but to
visit other homeschoolers, if they want the children to
interact with each other in a sane manner.
School is the problem, the result of the way the
Government has organized education is that there are
few sane opportunities for homeschooling children to
interact with other children.
C. The Education Monopoly.
The education system hangs together from monopolies and
privileges, in a system that is largely funded by
tax, in which a bureaucracy decides what is good and
what is not. WHEN rejects the values behind this system
as much as the resulting educational content.
Homeschooling should be accepted as a method. But WHEN
does not recommend any single method and often
rejects methods that imitate school in their drive for
academic success. WHEN's argumentation is that what may
appear as a perfectly staged and structured approach to
one, so often turns out to be an educational sandstorm
or dead-end-road for somebody else. Indeed, many
homeschoolers put great trust in specific methods. WHEN
argues that this common trust is a trap, a smokescreen
deliberately set up and carefully nurished by the
education bureaucracy to fool homeschoolers into
accepting the 'status' of educational qualifications.
Rather than to rely on any specific method, WHEN
prefers to see more responsibility in the hands of
families, regarding the subjects they like to be
occupied with and the methods they choose to advance in
such subjects. Of course, the very concept of subjects
is an invention of school, so any discussion about this
is rather academic.
Instead of being ruled by textbooks, WHEN argues that
families can use daily events and household items as
the best educational resources to get started with any
subject. In most cases, parents can give sufficient
guidance to help children on their way through whatever
subject they take on. The more advanced one is in a
subject, the better one will be able to judge and find
what is needed to make further progress. There is no
need for formal teachers and methods.
Many people have this cliche picture that homeschooling
parents are constantly walking around the house like
teachers, with a big stick pointed at a giant
blackboard in the center of the house, instructing
their children to make maths exercises, etc. WHEN
rejects this picture as a fabrication of
disciplinarians with sick ideas about child behavior.
Giving academic guidance is not the most important
parental role, whether or not those parents have chosen
for school or for home education. Neither should
academic achievement be seen as the measure of parental
success in homeschooling families. What counts most is
the parent's ability to stimulate interest, to
encourage children to develop their talents and
creativity, to be supportive, to give the right example
and, above all, to be there for the children.
Instead of worrying about the 3Rs, parents should praise
themselves lucky if they have a good relationship with
their children. If children do not like a specific subject,
regard it as an opportunity - they must have
something else that they are more interested in. Build on
that interest, even if it is just a spark. In the end,
it may be the most precious thing in your children's
life, something that will grow into a future career.
Children are never too lazy to learn, especially not
when they can do so in the company of parents who love
them. Don't blame children for being unwilling, blame
the teachers who constructed these boring subjects and
designed these disciplinary methods with the intention
to kill their spirits!
What is basic? Teachers are keen to teach children
literacy with the argument that this is the basis for
all other learning. But ordering children to write down
all kind of rubbish is simply a convenient way for the
teacher to keep the class quiet. This practice has done
unspeakable harm to entire generations.
Even if one for a moment accepts this nonsense about
what is basic, then surely verbal communication must be
more basic than literacy. Children learn how to speak
and interpret language first and they learn this at
HOME, without any instructions from schoolteachers.
The moment children enter school, an evil cloak
descends upon them designed to prevent children to
further develop their verbal communication. School
punishes children who speak, school does everything to
silence and immobilize children in the classroom and
adds some orchestrated madness in between breaks,
during which children play out all kinds of antics,
sillyness, bullying and nonsense, anything but sensible
conversation. Conversation between children is simply
discouraged at school. School prevents development of
verbal and social interaction, which is far more basic
than all this literacy shit.
If the discussion is about what is more basic, there is
no match. In any such comparison, literacy is clearly
less basic than verbal communication. Progress in
computing goes fast, particularly in voice recognition
and synthesis. Children who now waste their time on
spelling and writing may be skillful in things that are
obsolete by the time they grow up, while they lack
background and experience in what will be important by
In the bigger picture, school does far more harm. The
whole system is designed to stamp out any creativity.
Children who love to experiment, improvise and try out
new ways, are constantly being punished.
If there is anything that will be the key to a
successful future career, it will be the ability to
apply creativity. In future, eductional qualifications
may well become the albatross around one's neck, just
like criminal convictions. "Oh, you have spent twenty
years in educational institutions? Then you better go
somewhere else, you dummy!"
WHEN does not make prescriptions as to what subjects
children should familiarize with. The very idea that
some subjects are basic, that some are the foundation
for further development, that very idea is wrong, it is
a fabrication of the evil school system that
seggragates children according to age and teaches
different lessons for each age group, pretending that
one is somehow a prerequisite for the other. It is a
load of rubbish!
There is no single subject that is more basic than any
other subject. Children progress best if they can
experiment, improvise, act spontaneously and, of
course, are encouraged in this and not bullied,
punished and humiliated by teachers and other kids.
Shake off that evil smell of the basics, it
only cloaks parents in the darkness of the past, going way
back into the medieval mentality that schoolmasters
like to dwell in. Shake off that black toga and spot
the brightness and the multitude of colors of future
times, at horizons that are approaching fast all around
School prevents development of the right hemisphere of
the brain. WHEN argues that, in future, there will be
plenty of nerds that can calculate and apply
tautological logic, but there will be no demand for
their outdated skills.
D. Stop looking up to academic qualifications.
WHEN does not argue that home education is always the best
solution for all families. WHEN merely argues that
homeschooling should not be regarded as inferior compared
to school. Society looks up to academic qualifications as
something superior. But there is much evidence that this
to be a myth. The school system does not create an
academic elite, it merely creates academism and
elitism. School creates elitism by
constantly ranking and condemning children's behavior,
while selecting a few 'winners' that gain high marks
for obedience. This whole dog-training system is
sick. School and elitism go hand in hand. The word
class is synonymous with school!
WHEN has come across a lot of families with
'disadvantaged' children, often physically and mentally
challenged in ways that make the school environment
even more difficult to bear for such children. WHEN's
experience is that such families often gladly choose
for home education as a far better alternative than
school. The tragedy is that, in many cases, families do
not even have such a choice.
Homeschooling is not only academically, but also morally
and especially socially superior,
homeschooled children are more assertive, more communicative and
tend to establish loving and caring relationships that
have far more depth than the master-slave relations and
the pack-behavior of school.
Home education can provide an environment in which
children can relax, be themselves without constantly
having to prove themselves. As a result, children will
experiment and improvise - and subsequently develop
their talents - without the constant criticism of the
school atmostphere. Homeschoolers tend to value
children for what they are and tend to cherish their
potential. School is out to break children's will and
enforce conformity to the rule of the mob.
School has only been around for, say, one century. Some
homeschoolers call school a failed experiment that
could only become 'popular' because of compulsory
attendance laws. The intrinsically coercive nature of
school makes its 'popularity' suspicious to say the
least. Take away the dictator's gun and it will not
take long before his perceived lustre will evaporate -
break the teacher's stick and he instantly loses his
marbles! Take away the compulsion, the monopolies and
the privileges that the education system exploits, and
most educational problems will disappear.
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