OH my, you guys are off your rocker!
Some of us were compelled by the Holy Spirit to begin homeschooling, and though ignoring it for two years it became impossible to put it off. Petitioning our government? Its not the government that owns our children, has any direct God given responsibility for them, or should be interfering in our lives. That isn't how the US government was designed to operate at all.
Professionals? what a lark. In every other industrialized nation our college/university graduates are laughable. I had "professional" math teachers with their token degrees, that could not teach basic math to save their lives. I had to learn on my own, and fast, in college. Not everyone is that compelled. Its a sorry state of affairs, because our educational system is busted at its roots. You can't graduate a student that started flailing in grade school, then hope college will fix it. The symptoms are only exacerbated the longer they are ignored, and they ARE ignored in this country. Most of my teaching friends in the ps system do NOT send their children to the same schools they teach in. The spend their days not teaching academics, because they are too busy tending to teen pregnancy, drug abuse and sexual molestation in their classrooms. Kids in social settings with these problems, which includes every dynamic now, can't possibly focus on learning. Its the breakdown of the family unit itself that has us in such a mess. A struggling abused wife has little to offer her child via homework, IF the child can even focus on academics. There are multiple degreed "professionals' that can't spell or write correctly. We hand degrees out and then simply trust that people are now qualified after 4 years of binge drinking and sexing. Please. We have 7 colleges or universities in our geographical area, and access to more an hour's drive away. State, private, community/junior colleges, one of the oldest small private colleges in the nation, women's universities. Yet what is coming out of them is sorry indeed, not limited to the teaching field. Your assumptions George seem clouded by personal bias and your background in a state controlled setting.
Homeschoolers are throwbacks to the founding ideals of this country. You would be wrong to assume that we are uneducated buffoons that are simply living in paranoia and insulated. My dh and I are both educated, his IQ is incredibly high. We utilize retired FBI operatives, chemists, biologists and more to round out our children's education and broaden their experience. We are a family that has suffered the loss of one child's complete abilities due to a vaccine reaction. You can't tell a parent whose child is now affected by one of those 'rare' reactions that they don't happen. I am not paranoid, I am educated, intelligent, and fiercely driven. I spend my days, each and every one, educating DOCTORS, NURSES, THERAPISTS and other "professionals" as to the many varied issues of Rett Syndrome. For people allegedly so intelligent and trained, they can sure be incredibly stupid. I have to lead these 'professionals' around by the nose. It is simply wrong to elevate human beings to higher levels of respect simply because they have a piece of paper saying they attended classes on a topic that affects you. What makes a person a true expert in something is daily experience, unyielding dedication, unflinching pursuit, and continued effort in that field. Integrity to continue to increase ones knowledge base, something doctors are supposed to do and don't. Teachers, they come out not qualified and don't pursue much of anything but a base income.
I am truly disgusted by the biases presented here. You don't have to agree with homeschooling guys, if you aren't called then please don't do it. But to suggest that it is "EVIL" or "wrong" simply based on opinion and a few experiences with some ill prepared hs'ers? That is incredibly shortsighted and offensive. As if we couldn't come up with copious examples of publicly educated graduates that flunked out of school because they were just as ill prepared! That's hardly enough to justify voting to remove parental rights, the same ones that made this country what it was. I am utterly appalled at some of your responses. Presumptions about an entire group of people are rarely correct or intelligent. In case you are wondering I do have one graduate so far, and she went in as the first female management at her company in a stellar track. All because she was homeschooled, she was sought out. Sure, they aren't all biochemists by age 8, but neither are all homeschoolers completely inadequate failures. I would expect more of a logical and factual debate from such intelligent folks. Very disappointed am I.