Like so many parents and especially women, because I didn’t want my kids raised by nannies, (although I was thrilled with the input we got from au pairs) and it turned out I also didn’t want them socialized in age-siloed environments or educated in mainstream, largely sub-optimal schools, I spent a few decades primarily focused on raising kids and facilitating their learning outside of institutionalized education. For a few decades, I was steeped in unmediated learning, free learning, homeschooling, independent education and the nurturing of autodidactism.
Some of what I became convinced of during those years was:
1) If the cost of education gets too high people WILL opt out.
2) Those who do so are often extraordinarily committed to learning and willing to do crazy things to achieve it.
3) Institutions are not required for the pursuit of friends, mentors, teachers.
4) If they are able, parents are willing to spend money on direct to consumer learning.
5) Facilitated learning is often more effective than traditional teaching.
6) Individualized education is effective but really difficult to achieve in big groups.
7) Home-schooling is an unfortunate misnomer for many 21st century learners who have opted out of institutionalized education.
8) Love of learning is possible and preferred.
9) Learning often happens more effectively and joyfully in a free-range, self/family directed environment.
10) Standards are really not necessary.