Helena Cox (letters 18-Mar-2009) raises a spectre of insular religious home educators, presumably as part of a general push to get public support for governmental oversight of home education.
I wonder if she has written, or had published, similar “concern troll” letters about state approved faith schools, or indeed the culturally homogenizing effect of general state schools in eliminating the very diversity of opinion she claims to be defending.
I have far greater faith in parents than the state in being able to decide on an appropriate education for their children, and the more I see reported on the state of schooling in this country and the woeful outcomes for the children mired in state education, the greater my faith grows.
I am writing as a humanist-pagan home educator who counts amongst his, and his children’s, home educating friends people of all faiths and none, including as some of our closest friends a family who fit the description Helena gives to a T. I have no fears for their children, as you could not find a more loving and supportive family.
Social diversity cannot be defended by state imposed homogeneity. Perhaps Helena should ask whether she believes that home education should only be for “people like us” and that “people not like us” should be forced to be like us.
And if she thinks faith based home education is “tantamount to child abuse”, I can only wish that she is speaking from a blisfully naive viewpoint of not having witnessed child abuse. The comparison is crass and insulting to all parties.