Anyways, while reading Tested, I came across a fabulous quote that just sums up the problems facing government-run schools. It's from a former corporate CEO named Jamie Robert Vollmer. He was giving a speech to government schoolteachers about how schools should be run more like businesses when a veteran English teacher asked what happened if his ice cream business received a subpar shipment of raw ingredients. He admitted that he would send it back:
You can read the full Education Week article from which the quote was taken here.
"And so began my long transformation. Since then, I have visited hundreds of schools. I have learned that a school is not a business. Schools are unable to control the quality of their raw material, they are dependent upon the vagaries of politics for a reliable revenue stream, and they are constantly mauled by a howling horde of disparate, competing customer groups that would send the best CEO screaming into the night."
This quote just goes to demonstrate why homeschooling is able to provide a superior education to children. While parents do not have control over the innate intellectual potential of their children (that's up to God or Nature, depending on one's beliefs), they do at least have control over the environmental influences. Unlike government schoolteachers, home educators can ensure their students get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet, do not watch excessive television, have regular medical & dental checkups, etc. They can consistently provide loving but firm discipline. While there still can be occasional family crises such as illness, death, job loss, or divorce (though I suspect that the divorce rate among homeschoolers is significantly lower than the general population much as it is among users of Natural Family Planning), at least homeschooled children won't have their education disrupted by classmates acting out in response to crises within their own families.
Should a homeschool budget need to be scaled back during an economic downturn, parents have control over where those cuts will be made and can minimize the negative effects on their children. Class sizes & guidance counseling loads won't suddenly go up. Electives won't disappear such often happens with art, music, PE, foreign language, etc. in government-run schools.
Those "howling horde of disparate, competing customer groups that would send the best CEO screaming into the night" as Mr. Vollmer puts it? In homeschooling, there really aren't too many of them. There is obviously no conflict between teachers & administrators, teachers & parents, or administrators & parents. Politicians and corporate interests have little power to meddle. No special interest groups complain about what is included in or excluded by the curriculum. The ACLU and NAACP don't stand watch threatening lawsuits. There is no controversy over military recruiters visiting the school (if one does, it's by invitation). All the political and ideological battles that distract government-run schools from their missions are virtually eliminated in homeschooling.