Skip to comments.<i>USA Today</i> Gets Homeschool Story Wrong
Posted on 06/16/2009 2:16:02 PM PDT by Sopater
On May 28, 2009 USA Today published a story based on a report from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), which is part of the Federal Department of Education, titled The Condition of Education 2009. The headline of the USA Today story was Profound shift in kind of families who are homeschooling their children. A few days later the title was changed to More higher-income families are homeschooling their children.
Regrettably, among other problems with the article, USA Today made one blatant error and one very misleading claim. The blatant error is USA Todays statement that homeschoolers are increasingly white. We do not understand how USA Today can reach this conclusion. Simply by reading the NCES report you will discover that the estimates for white homeschoolers, as a percentage of the entire homeschool population, were 75.3% in 1999, 77% in 2003 and 76.8% in 2007. The obvious conclusion is that for the years 19992007 white homeschoolers consistently represented just over three-quarters of the homeschool population.
HSLDA asked the NCES to comment on the USA Today article. Below is a statement from JoAnn Webb, a spokesman for the NCES, The percentage of all homeschoolers who are White, non-Hispanic has not changed over this period (in the mid-70 percent range).
Another misleading claim, as the revised title for the story states, is that more higher-income families are homeschooling their children. Again, USA Today failed to correctly read the report. In order to make their point, USA Today defines higher-income as families whose household income is over $50,000. How many people really consider $50,000 in household income higher-income? For comparison, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2006 married-couple families with one or more related children under age 18, the median nationwide income was $74,049. It is very misleading for USA Today to boldly assert that more higher-income families are homeschooling when out of the 60% of families they cite as being higher-income (26.8% in the $50,001$75,000 bracket and 33.2% in the $75,001 or more bracket) the 26.8% that USA Today believes to be higher-income actually have below average incomes.
Also, as has been confirmed by the NCES, the income figures between 1999 and 2007 were not adjusted for inflation. This means that the same type of person answering the NCES survey in 1999 that fell in the $25,001$50,000 income bracket could easily find themselves in the $50,001$75,000 bracket in 2007 since an income of $45,000 in 1999 becomes $55,518.63 in 2007 after adjusting for inflation.
Its a shame that in an era when hundreds of diverse media outlets are able to accurately report on the homeschool movement a major newspaper has made such simple errors.
Perhaps the writer was just in a rush to be first, since his story was published on the day the NCES report was released online, or perhaps he has an agenda to falsely paint homeschoolers as rich and white, thereby dismissing the full range of people who are making tremendous sacrifices on limited budgets to ensure that the next generation receives the best education and upbringing available. Either way USA Today should make additional corrections to their factually inaccurate story.
Yep! That was probably the writer and editor's motive. ( no surprise!)
Anyway, I always double the government figures on homeschooling. They are now claiming that about 3 million children are being homeschooled. It is likely 6 million.
Never go to the news for truth or the movies for history ...
0bama, AlGore, Biden, Barney Frank, Waxman, Pelosi.....
And all the Big But people (the ones that preface their bigotry with “I don’t have anything against homeschooling BUT...”) will open up their maws and suck this article in as proof positive for what they believe. Reason won’t matter.
So for tax purposes, higher incomes begin at $250,000, but for homeschoolers, higher incomes begin at $50,000.
Well that makes total sense. /sarc
I wonder if this group was the most qualified to discipline and teach.....?
i>USA Today</i> Gets Homeschool Story Wrong
Well of course they got it wrong.They were educated in the Government School System....
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This is HSLDA's response to this USA Today article that was being passed around. (I don't remember reading it before. I searched but found no duplicate thread.)
What do you expect from the McPaper?
Might be the group most able to see clearly what is coming down and with the wherewithal to do something about it for their own kids.
Bad rich people; bad white people. And of course, bad white males.
It is very bad to disengage from the government-run propaganda mills; it puts our kids out of their reach.
in the end, it doesn't really matter what anybody thinks... if someone truly wants to homeschool, he/she will do it... for those who say, "oh--i just don't have the patience," i say, "yes--i'm sure you're right." for those who say, "gosh, i just don't think i could do it," i've come to respond, "yeah--you probably couldn't."