Friday, September 12, 2008

Kowtowing Before the State: A Real Irritation (Jim Fedako)

Fellow homeschooler Jim Fedako comments on the absurdity of begging the state to "allow" us to educate our children as we see fit:

Maybe it’s an age thing. Or maybe it’s a deeper understanding of how things really work. Regardless, as I grow older I find myself growing more resentful of the state and more irritated by my own actions before it.

Where I used to kowtow without even a moment’s reflection, I now fume for days after showing any subservience to the state, its laws, and its officials.

A case in point: The Ohio State School Board recently reviewed its rules and regulations around homeschooling. The Home School Legal Defense Association sent an alert to its members and associates: The state school board is seeking online comments from "stakeholders" regarding possible changes to the rules and regulations around homeschooling. HSLDA wanted supporters of homeschooling to register their approval of the current system – the system is working, do not change anything. I acted.

I clicked over to the Ohio Department of Education website and entered my comments. At the time, this didn’t seem to be such a big deal – simply throw some formality around the do not change anything message and hit send. Done.

Yet the irritation started right after the return message "your comments have been registered" appeared on my computer screen. Who are those folks at the state board of education? What makes them believe that I must beg their permission to educate my children as I see fit? And why did I justify their power and position by kowtowing to them – or, e-kowtowing, anyway?

Read the rest

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