WASHINGTON—According to a report released Monday by the U.S. Department of Education, an increasing number of American parents are choosing to have their children raised at school rather than at home.
Deputy Education Secretary Anthony W. Miller said that many parents who school-home find U.S. households to be frightening, overwhelming environments for their children, and feel that they are just not conducive to producing well-rounded members of society.
Thousands of mothers and fathers polled in the study also believe that those running American homes cannot be trusted to keep their kids safe.
"Every year more parents are finding that their homes are not equipped to instill the right values in their children," Miller said. "When it comes to important life skills such as proper nutrition, safe sex, and even basic socialization, a growing number of mothers and fathers think it's better to rely on educators to guide and nurture their kids."
"And really, who can blame them?" Miller continued. "American homes have let down our nation's youth time and again in almost every imaginable respect."
According to the report, children raised at home were less likely to receive individual adult attention, and were often subjected to ineffective and wildly inconsistent disciplinary measures. The study also found that many parents expressed concerns that, when at home, their children were being teased and bullied by those older than themselves.
In addition to providing better supervision and overall direction, school-homing has become popular among mothers and fathers who just want to be less involved in the day-to-day lives of their children.
"Parents are finding creative ways to make this increasingly common child-rearing track work," Miller said. "Whether it's over-relying on after-school programs and extracurricular activities, or simply gross neglect,† school-homing is becoming a widely accepted method of bringing children up."
Despite the trend's growing popularity, Miller said that school programs are often jeopardized or terminated because shortsighted individuals vote against tax increases intended to boost educational spending.
"The terrifying reality we're facing is that the worst-equipped people you could possibly imagine may actually be forced to take care of their children," Miller said.
Parents who have decided to school-home their children have echoed many of Miller's concerns. Most said that an alarming number of legal guardians such as themselves lack the most basic common sense required to give children the type of instruction they need during crucial developmental years.
"It's really a matter of who has more experience in dealing with my child," Cincinnati- resident Kevin Dufrense said of his decision to have his 10-year-old son Jake, who suffers from ADHD and dyslexia, school-homed. "These teachers are dealing with upwards of 40 students in their classrooms at a time, so obviously they know a lot more about children than someone like me, who only has one son and doesn't know where he is half the time anyway."
"Simply put, it's not the job of parents to raise these kids," Dufrense added.
Though school-homing has proven to be an ideal solution for millions of uninvolved parents, increasingly overburdened public schools have recently led to a steady upswing in the number of students being prison-homed.