Guide the Guidance Counselor with a Leash

A friend of mine just put her son back into the school system.  He had been homeschooled for Grades 7 and 8, but wanted to try high school.  The decision was rather last-minute and my friend didn’t have a portfolio put together (not that she could have done much anyway, as a good deal of her son’s learning was unschooling).  Their local school had insisted the boy sign up for Grade 9 applied levels for everything, because he would have to “catch up” to everyone else.

Homeschooling does not mean not learning.

The boy was transferred to academic levels this week because he was getting 100% in everything.  His mother is leaving him in applied English for next semester because he has no interest in English and doesn’t really care about literature; her son is not likely to go to university but if he does it certainly won’t be for English.  Seems reasonable to me.

While I will gladly tear strips off the stupid guidance counselor who guided this family so very badly, I suppose I must consider the chicken-or-egg theory.  Who taught this guidance counselor to be a guidance counselor?  There are many homeschoolers in that area, so it can’t be the only exposure the guy had to alternative education.  Are the school boards doing anything to ensure their employees are able to do their jobs?  I realise funds are tight but it wouldn’t cost them anything to have a couple of homeschoolers come in to talk with a new guidance counselor.

Walaikum recently had to write an essay about whether Canadians view post-secondary education as credential or educational.  He did a great job on it.  However, we spent about an hour and a half talking about the differences between the two adjectives.  The concept of  education purely for the sake of knowledge is a difficult thing for Walaikum to handle yet he deliberately asked questions until he understood.  If a high school student is able to do that, why can’t a guidance counselor?

2 responses to “Guide the Guidance Counselor with a Leash

  1. I knew an unschooled kid (who was 21 at the time and no longer doing schooling of any sort) who had never heard of Shakespeare and had grammar that hurt my ears. It is possible that the guidance counselor had met other unschooled kids who actually hadn’t learned a thing and was basing it on that. You never know.

    Just disturbing the shit a little over here.


  2. Fair point. But I know lots of kids – and adults – who went to school who have never heard of Shakespeare and have terrible grammar. In fact, I think there are more “schooled” idiots than “unschooled” idiots in my life.

    If I meet one or two stupid guidance counselors, are they all stupid? (Okay, maybe guidance counselors aren’t a good example….)


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