Alberta Department of Education. (1984, December). A study of private schools in Alberta. Edmonton, Alberta: Alberta Dept. of Education Planning Services Branch. (ERIC Document No. ED256021). (A study of private schools within Alberta, Canada and their effect upon the public education sector.). (“Abstract: This study was commissioned by Alberta Education [Canada] to examine the development and organization of private schools in Alberta and to consider future directions. It examines the financial issues related to private schools, the effect of private schools on public school systems and on the education of children, and implications for public school jurisdictions and government. Possible alternatives are identified, and recommendations are made for future action. Part 1 is a discussion of the context, issues, and objectives of the study. Part 2 describes the elaborate four-phase process of the study: design, research requirements, data analysis, and final report. Part 3, the bulk of the report, is a discussion of conclusions and recommendations arranged according to 10 key policy issues: (1) rationale for private schools’ continuation; (2) rationale and extent of provincial control over them; (3) nature of controls; (4) public funding for operating expenses; (6) categorization of private schools; (7) need for statutory controls; (8) need for administrative controls; (9) effect on public school system of private schools; and (10) role of Alberta Education in home schooling. Three appendixes list study participants and acknowledgements, the 10 resource papers incorporated in the study, and a glossary of terms” (retrieved 7/16/13 from http://www.eric.ed.gov). (Keywords: compliance (legal); educational policy; elementary secondary education; financial policy; financial support; foreign countries; government role; government school relationship; homeschooling, home schooling; policy formation; private education; private school aid; private schools; public policy; school choice; school funds; school support, educational policy, government school relationship, private education, private school aid, private schools.)
Arai, A. Bruce (1999) Homeschooling and the redefinition of citizenship. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 7(27), 1-15. (Author has a very solid and research-informed understanding of homeschooling and the arguments for and against it. Appears positive toward homeschooling as an alternative and acceptable way to form good citizens compared to state/public and/or private institutional schooling. Recognizes that homeschooling might be done in a way that is not good for a child or community. “Various models of citizenship have been proposed and debated (see Delanty, 1997 for a good review of the major positions), but there is no single vision of citizenship which is acceptable to all. Perhaps this is not surprising given that citizenship is a fundamentally political concept. Similarly, there are many different proposals about the nature and content of citizenship education” (p. 7). “Moving beyond homeschoolers responses to criticisms levelled at them to the larger body of research on homeschooling, there is evidence to suggest that homeschoolers appear to be involved in a process of constructing an alternative vision of citizenship for them and their children, albeit largely implicitly. Consistent with the notion of multidimensional citizenship, homeschoolers are involved in combining a different mix of attributes to become good citizens. In particular, they emphasize participation and the importance of family as the basis of a different definition of citizenship” (p. 8). “While the form and content of citizenship education among homeschoolers is clearly different from what children receive in school, it is not an inferior experience. Homeschoolers, in other words, can be good citizens. Here I have argued that homeschoolers, despite being accused of not being good citizens, are actually engaged in a process of defining their own vision of what it means to be a citizen. They clearly do not believe that compulsory schooling is a necessary prerequisite of adequate citizenship and they prefer to stress the importance of family and participation in public activities as the basis of their understanding of the good citizen” (p. 9). “In addition, homeschooling parents and children must recognize that they are not just keeping their kids at home, and that they are not just making a statement about parental rights in education. Rather, they are also helping to define and shape what it means to be a citizen of their country. They must be prepared to think in these broader terms, and to recognize that what they are doing has some good elements and some bad elements, just as citizenship education in schools has strengths and weaknesses. In other words, homeschooling is not just about where kids will learn their ABCs, it affects the very definition of what it means to be a member of a society” (p. 10). “Abstract: Homeschooling has grown considerably in many countries over the past two or three decades. To date, most research has focused either on comparisons between schooled and homeschooled children, or on finding out why parents choose to educate their children at home. There has been little consideration of the importance of homeschooling for the more general issue of citizenship, and whether people can be good citizens without going to school. This paper reviews the research on homeschooling, as well as the major objections to it, and frames these debates within the broader issues of citizenship and citizenship education. The paper shows that homeschoolers are carving out a different but equally valid understanding of citizenship and that policies which encourage a diversity of understandings of good citizenship should form the basis citizenship education both for schools and homeschoolers.” (p. 1).) (Keywords: homeschooling, citizenship, philosophy, institutional schools)
Arai, A. Bruce. 2000. Reasons for home schooling in Canada. Canadian Journal of Education/Revue canadienne de l’education, 25(3), 204-217. (Author appears to have a deep and accurate understanding of reasons or motivations for homeschooling. “Abstract: Why do parents in Canada choose to home school their children? This article presents the results of qualitative interviews with 23 home-schooling [homeschooling] families in Ontario and British Columbia and compares these results with previous research in other jurisdictions, particularly the United States. The findings suggest that Canadian home-based educators have very different reasons for choosing home schooling than their U.S. counterparts. Possible explanations for these differences are discussed” (p. 204). Author astutely observes the following: “But more recently, parents who do not face the same legal and attitudinal barriers may view home schooling as one educational option among many. These parents may not have the strong philosophical commitments of earlier generations. Despite its current notoriety in the mass media, home schooling is certainly easier to arrange for now than in the past. Because many earlier battles about the legality of home schooling have been resolved, parents can at least try home schooling without the strong value commitments required in previous eras” (p. 208). “Previous studies have found two distinct groups of home schoolers: ideologues and pedagogues. These studies also showed that many home schoolers are motivated by their own negative experiences in school or by their desire to strengthen or preserve the unity of the nuclear family, to live an alternative lifestyle, and/or to assert their right to determine their children’s education. However, only two of the parents I interviewed had begun home schooling because of their own bad experiences in school, and only a few said they were attempting to live an alternative lifestyle through schooling at home. In addition, the ideologue-pedagogue dichotomy does not capture very well the different reasons that people gave for starting home schooling. These parents chose to teach their children at home for a variety of reasons, and many had both pedagogical and ideological objections to public schooling. This may be an indication of the broad appeal of home schooling among Canadian parents” (p. 215).) (Keywords: elementary secondary education; foreign countries; homeschooling, home schooling; interviews; nontraditional education; parent attitudes; parents)
Audain, Tunya. (1987). Home education: The third option. The Canadian School Executive, April, 18-21, 24.