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if You Don't Like Your Local School, The States Offer The Best Alternative!

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Religious groups and some individuals have always passed on the local classrooms, choosing home schooling or starting church-affiliated schools, but there are several drawbacks to both those.

The church-affiliated (mostly "Christian") schools are fine but only if you want that sort of education - what if you want a mainstream education for your kids but have a job and can't home school?

Here's a radical idea - why not get together with a group of local parents and sign up for the online K-12 schools which are offered in many states?

The kids get a real, mainstream education - the only problem is having them home all day. That worked for a friend of mine who runs her CPA office out of a home office, but what if both parents work?

Why not have a central "class room" where any parent or even someone hired to monitor the students can run an alternative school?

The online schools take care of teaching and testing - the "monitor" wouldn't need any sort of teaching credentials or even a college degree, they would just be "sitters" to see that the students spend time on the computers - the state would monitor progress using certified teachers.

That's exactly the sort of thing people do when they get fed up with a business which isn't providing customer service at a reasonable cost - they start their own.

I have no dog in this fight except that, being a writer, I prefer to live in a literate society and am fed up with 8th graders who think Columbus discovered America or that Marconi invented the radio. That's obviously what they are taught. They certainly aren't taught how important a credit rating is or that they will probably need to learn a new career every decade or so, or that TV ads are just after your money.

(How do you "discover" a continent which already has millions of residents? In fact, Columbus never actually did step on the ground of North or South America. BTW it was Nicola Tesla who mostly invented the radio - at least according to the U.S. Supreme Court and The Patent and Trademark Office.)

I bet you can't find one TEACHER in 10 who knows who Tesla was or who invented the electric motor and the transformer which made AC current - fairly important inventions.

When you laugh at The Tonight Show's Jay Walking, remember that those people he questions handle your food, construct buildings, work at the DMV, teach your kids, or vote.

Trust me, it gets a lot less funny when one of them is driving a 2 ton SUV and you are a pedestrian. Or they believe a politician who tells them they can have anything they want and there will never be a bill.

Find the idea of opting out of that big industrial school on the corner interesting? Check out this site for lists of accredited online state K-12 schools.

http://distancelearn.about.com/lr/online_public_schools_by_state/349715/1/

John McCormick is a reporter, /science/medical columnist and finance and social commentator, with 17,000+ bylined stories. Contact John through NewsBlaze.

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