Patrick Wallace Supports Homeschooling Programs

Patrick Wallace Alabama State Board of Education Candidate supports Homeschooling

Power hungry governmental organizations have used bureaucratic meddling, ineffective universal mandates, and forced conformance to dictate the education our children receive. We are willingly allowing the government to be the sole source to determine the available educational pathways for our children and as a result doing them a great disservice. Diverse learning styles, personal temperaments, along with individual students’ interests and needs have been completely eliminated from the decision-making process of the current system. The policy makers are too far removed from each student's individual environment to know what is best, yet still yield the power to enforce ill-fitting standards. In our communities, the parents and educators are the absolute best resources for defining the educational needs of their students.

As an avid proponent of the school choice movement, I fiercely believe that life is a learning lesson, no matter where you are. Nobel-winning economist Milton Friedman said, “Not all schooling is education, and not all education is schooling”. Parents and Guardians should have the right to individualize education to best suit the needs of their students. Educational liberty is acting in support of all alternative learning opportunities, regardless of the source. K–12 education has progressed beyond the outdated image of a bored student sitting at an uncomfortable desk in a brick-and-mortar school building, deteriorating from the mismanagement of funds and lack of care or within the halls of an extravagant complex constructed by the wasteful spending of forcefully collected taxes. The decision of what education should look like and choosing the educational providers and settings that meet the individual needs of each student should be decisions made by the parents and families in our community.

Public schools have limited time, attention and practical resources to distribute among the student population, which means that kids cannot pursue their natural interests with the same zeal and passion that homeschooling can allow. Homeschooling is rich with benefits and empowers families to customize their children’s education using a variety of options beyond those offered within the traditional school setting. It reminds us of how much value there is to be extracted from everyday living and provides a welcome opportunity to integrate education with life skills, which are both essential for our children’s success as grown adults. In fact, homeschooling seems to benefit students more than the customary educational environment. According to research completed by Hanover, sixty-eight percent of homeschooling parents stated that their children were learning more from home, and 65 percent said that their children were enjoying learning more and were more interested in their schoolwork. Sixty-eight percent of homeschoolers reported increased happiness and another 60 percent reported improved behavior as well. You would be hard pressed to find a reason to be disappointed with these positive results.

I believe that flexibility and adaptability are some of the most beneficial aspects of homeschooling. Homeschoolers love flexibility and strive by taking advantage of it. Homeschooled students are able to experiment with their school day, week and year to find the right balance for themselves. Homeschooling supports trying different curricula, online programs and resources to enable the student to truly thrive. It incorporates beneficial, outside resources like museums and other cultural assets into the learning process. As a homeschooling parent said, “There’s really no right or wrong way to homeschool your child. It’s whatever fits their needs''. Homeschooling provides the freedom to exercise both structure and creativity while also allowing for an individualized learning pace. Meaning that each student experiences education in a way that embraces their natural impulses and inquisitiveness. In a conventional institution, students are forced to conform to the rigid and overarching structure set by the school.

In order to take on the established system and disrupt the status quo I need supporters like you. The political machine that is so heavily entrenched in our everyday lives has long standing financial and vocal backers. Your support and contributions will lead to the installation of true educational liberty in Alabama school systems. When elected as a member of the Alabama State Board of Education, I vow to remove the negative stigma associated with the quality of education that homeschooling provides and promote it as the beneficial and productive system that it is. I will foster cooperation between homeschooling parents and organizations and the established school systems so that we may all work for the benefit of what is of the utmost importance, the student. I will not push the burden of power-hungry political requirements upon the backs of our children that only serve to squash their growth. I want to help expand the community of homeschoolers and their supporters and increase the level of opportunities and connections available to both the children and the parents who teach them.

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