They also will need expert witnesses who can testify that homeschooling, in general, is an exceptional way to teach. Modern homeschooling originated with “educational progressives” who believed traditional schools were intellectually stifling. Raymond Moore’s famous study in the 1960s showed that children can learn more in a few hours’ time with a tutor than they can learn in a group setting for an entire day. This truth has been confirmed by the statistics since the 1980s.
Some judges assume that group education with peers is needed for “proper” social development.
In the Kurowski case, for instance, the judge stated, “Enrollment in public school will provide Amanda with an increased opportunity for group learning, group interaction, social problem solving, and exposure to a variety of points of view.” But is that actually the case?
During a hearing, the judge voiced concern about Amanda’s strong Christian faith and her “vigorous defense” of that faith to her court-appointed counselor.
In the judge’s opinion, the 10-year-old Amanda had “not had the opportunity to seriously consider any other point of view.” Despite her successful homeschooling from first through fourth grade, Amanda was ordered into public school for the 2009–2010 school year; the judge felt she needed socialization.
Homeschooling experts argue that harmful peer pressure in public schools can result in negativesocialization.
And some studies conclude that adult interaction is equally as important as peer contact.
Some, like Brenda Kurowski, learn the hard way that family courts can step in and force their children to enroll in public school.
Brenda and Martin Kurowski divorced in Massachusetts after the birth of their daughter, Amanda.
In paternity or child custody hearings, parents who never married experience similar ordeals.