Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Home Schooling Guidelines?

You knew it would happen sooner or later .... I am posting in response to an article on - you guessed it! - CNN.com. This one concerns that mother in Texas, Deann Laney, who bludgeoned her children to death.

Aside from the legal implications to pleading insanity and the horrific nature of the crime, I'd like to point out that these kids were home schooled. This is not the first time a mother who home schooled her children has gone ballistic on her kids. There was also Andrea Yates who drowned her five children in 2002. My question is, why is there almost no regulation when it comes to home schooling?? Let's ignore the fact that curriculums and subjects are not mandated, but what about mental stability? How do we avoid the Andrea Yates and Deann Laneys of the world? Educators have to have background checks, go through screenings and take standardized tests to be able to set foot in the classroom. Of course the assumption is that all parents want what is best for their children, and if you think you can do a better job at home than they can in the schools, by all means give it a go. However, if education majors have to go through classes in child development and psychology, and understand how young minds work in order to be able to best teach then what they need to know to be competent members of society then why are parents any different? Why require the utmost precaution on one side and absolutely none on the other? Social services can attest to the fact that just because you are biologically able to be a parent doesn't necessarily mean that you are mentally capable of being one.

Looking at the two women mentioned above I'd venture a guess that these women were on the fringe to begin with, and then they were pushed over the edge by exercising the option to stay at home all day and attempt to teach children varying ages with different skill levels and interests. I would not even attempt such a thing and I am not sitting on the precipice of insanity (the peanut gallery shall remain mute at this juncture!).

What about a simple mental health screening once a year? You want to home school your kids - great! We just want to make sure that you are not a psychotic mess first. I would also like to know where the husbands were during all this. The type of delusional behavior and mental illness described in those situations does not manifest itself overnight. Where were the husbands?? Didn't they notice something was amiss before they had to come home and face their children's corpses?! I grant you that I do not have a background in psychiatric medicine, and I do not know all the exigent circumstances here, but it strains credulity to think that the spoouses of Yates and Laney had no forewarning of their wives' mental decline.

It's a shame, no actually it's a tragedy. It is a tragedy I hope will not be repeated, if only the powers that be will WAKE UP and realize a problem when they see it.

Friday, April 02, 2004

Federal Court, My Birthday & Pete's Blog

Ohhhhh yes! I made Pete's blog, I made Pete's blog (doing the Snoopy dance of happiness).

Check out http://pete.holidian.com
(I really need to get some links up of other BLOGS, any techno geeks volunteering to help me w/ that one??)

Pete posted a nice little manifesto about how to be a great blogger - thanks Pete! Check it out! (Yup, shameless plug. But I don't care!)

Today I am making my first appearance in Federal Court AND it's my birthday, but finding my name in Pete's blog - yuppers THAT'S what made my day! ;)

Catch you all on the flip side .....