Defining unschooling is a little like describing a color, and every bit as elusive. You can rely on commonly-held descriptions; for example, we generally all agree what blue looks like, but what about cobalt, aqua, navy, cyan, sapphire, azure, indigo, cerulean, turquoise or cornflower? It’s the same with unschooling. There’s a generally accepted definition, but [...]

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In the late 1980′s we started seeing incidents, at first seemingly unrelated but then increasingly fitting a pattern, until by March of 1991 we had become concerned enough to admit a growing sense of alarm to our colleagues, associates, and fellow homeschooling activists. In those days before email and the Internet were commonplace tools, we [...]

Continue reading about Freedoms At Risk - Twenty Years Later

In this title piece to a series of essays known as Homeschooling Freedoms At Risk, Mark and Helen Hegener wrote, “Long established support and political networks have been damaged, and in many cases replaced with new exclusive groups. Legal actions have been taken which have resulted in the strengthening of states’ rights over the education of our children. A view of homeschooling has been actively promoted which advances the notion that there is only one way to homeschool, and which ties that one way to an extremely narrow range of social and political support.” Homeschooling Freedoms At Risk was published in the May-June 1991 issue of Home Education Magazine

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In the second essay in the Homeschooling Freedoms At Risk series, M. Larry Kaseman writes: “Whether we like it or not, the daily decisions we make in our own homeschools affect the direction homeschooling is going, simply because it is a grassroots movement made up of the sum of the actions of many individuals. We do not have the luxury of deciding whether we want to work in isolation or be politically active-our daily decisions and actions or inactions have political consequences both inside and outside the homeschooling community.”

Continue reading about Freedoms Responsibilities And The “Four Pillars”

In her essay for the series Homeschooling Freedoms At Risk, Becky Olson writes, “Among homeschoolers, who I have always believed were the new freedom fighters, a great schism has occurred. Many people have failed to understand the connection between privilege and responsibility. They are freedom fighters in name only. Instead of letting the school superintendent tell them how to educate their children, they are letting the homeschool leadership of a neighborhood, city, state, or national assembly tell them how to educate their children.”

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In Linda Dobson’s Homeschooling Freedoms At Risk essay she writes, “What bothers me most about hiding behind words like pill-ar and Christian is not the terms, but that which I discover is being hid - lies, fraud, slander, and a divide-and-conquer methodology reminiscent of the most evil, hostile takeovers in recent history.”

Continue reading about Bitter Pill-ars To Swallow

In the final section of this presentation of Homeschooling Freedoms At Risk we gather quotes, letters, and other communications that were originally included in the layout of the May-June 1991 issue of Home Education Magazine.

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Deschooling is the word that describes the transition from school to a life of educating ourselves. It is usually the parents who need a helping hand in trusting their own children. That is because we have all been told that children need to be forced to learn, that school is the only place it happens, [...]

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Mary Nix shares a large collection of favorite articles on homeschooling which are available to read free online, and which reflect her thoughts on homeschooling and seasons: “Having gone to school myself, I always loved summers more than anything. I loved being able to read, draw, hike or participate in whatever activity I chose on any given day. My children had that freedom every season of their life.”

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He didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it. ~Clarence Budington Kelland This quote neatly sums up my view on education. We certainly can sit and be instructed, but watching others pursue life, especially those with a passion is a lesson that is embedded in our hearts. Who [...]

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