Monday, December 31, 2007

Aaaargh again ... LA Times edition

Another reporter takes the HSLDA's politicized, sectarian statements as objective fact about homeschoolers. In "Home-schoolers rally to Huckabee," (again with the hyphen--they really need to update their stylebook), you get this paragraph:
About 9,000 of Iowa's students are home-educated. Nationwide, the number is 2 million and rising steadily, according to Michael P. Ferris, who runs the national home-schooling association. Home-schoolers are distributed fairly evenly among the states. Though an increasing number are ethnic or racial minorities, the majority of families are evangelical Christians.

Now first off, the HSLDA, much as they love to represent themselves as such, are most decidedly not "the national home-schooling assocation." They are a national home-schooling association. How much Googling does a reporter need to do in order to find, oh, say, NHEN?

Secondly, do we have to go through the handwaving about the "most homeschoolers are evangelical Christians" cliche again? Is any journalist anywhere ever going to notice the NCES study showing fewer than 30% of families having a religious motivation for homeschooling?

Our local paper picked up this story and ran it, without managing to notice that this town is noted for its massive non-evangelical homeschooling community (it got mentioned in Mothering Magazine once, though).

Update: Oooh! I'm famous!

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