The number of home schoolers is on the rise, thanks to the combined impacts of hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Displaced residents, many grown tired of placing their children in new surroundings, have decided to take on the education burden themselves. In Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana's southern-most, school officials estimate that some 800 families are taking the do-it-yourself route. For some parents, the added duty is not only physically taxing, but mentally as well. "Math'll be hard," said one resident. "It's not just addition and subtraction - it's everything." Other parents are more optimistic. "This is a beautiful short-term solution, especially given where we are now," said a former resident of New Orleans now living in Baton Rouge and teaching her twin 9-year-old daughters. Policy people should be mindful of what's happening. This is a unique opportunity to measure and observe how well home schooling parents - both the well-educated and the not-so-well-educated - can do with this challenging task.
"Across Louisiana, parents become makeshift teachers," CNN.com, October 6, 2005