Anti-Homeschool Harvard Professor Thumbs Her Nose at ‘Conservative Christians’

by Celine Ryan


After the school received backlash for Harvard Law professor Elizabeth Bartholet’s call for a ban on homeschooling, she’s doubling down.

The Harvard Gazette gave Bartholet a chance to clarify her statements in an interview published Friday. In the piece, titled “A warning on homeschooling,” Bartholet doubled down on her anti-homeschooling stance, proposing even stricter government regulations on the practice than in her original article.

Bartholet attributes the increased interest in homeschooling in America to the “growth in the conservative evangelical movement,” explaining that “conservative Christians” use the practice to as a way to  “escape from the secular education in public schools,” after a failed effort “to have their children exempted from exposure to alternative values in schools.”

“Many homeschooling parents are extreme ideologues, committed to raising their children within their belief systems isolated from any societal influence,” Bartholet warns, offering examples of families that “believe that black people are inferior to white people” and that “women should be subject to men.”

Bartholet goes on to explain that homeschooling presents “dangers” because “children may not have the chance to choose for themselves whether to exit these ideological communities,” and “society may not have the chance to teach them values important to the larger community, such as tolerance of other people’s views and values.”

When offered a chance to explain her proposed “presumptive ban” on homeschooling, Bartholet offered a clearer view of how exactly she hopes to regulate the practice. Her proposed policies would effectively ban anybody from fully homeschooling their own children.

“I’d like to see a radical transformation of the homeschooling regime,” Bartholet said plainly, before explaining that parents wishing to homeschool would have to “demonstrate that they have a legitimate reason to homeschool,” as well as that they are “qualified to provide an adequate education” and that such an education would be “comparable in scope” to that of public schools.

She goes on to explain that those parents “granted permission” to teach their own children would still be required to put their children in “at least some school courses and extracurricular activities so they get exposure to a set of alternative values and experiences.”

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Celine Ryan is a Correspondent Editor at











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8 Thoughts to “Anti-Homeschool Harvard Professor Thumbs Her Nose at ‘Conservative Christians’”

  1. CCW

    I hope that the Harvard professor is not being lobbied by the Pharmaceuticals to buck home schooling. According to Senate subcommittee on restarting schools run by Lamar Alexander, yesterday by Fox, he says kids returning to school this fall will have to wear masks, and maybe obey social distancing. But, even worse, they will have to have up-to-date boosters and innoculations against flue and pneumonia. This will fire up the libertarians and they will look for homeschooling relief. But some states already are legislating against home schooling.

  2. David S. Blackwell

    With some 17,000 Puritans migrating to New England by 1636, Harvard was founded in anticipation of the need for training clergy for the new commonwealth, a “church in the wilderness”.

  3. Ron Welch

    The professor is probably “pro choice”, but calls for a “ban on homeschooling” and NO to educational choice!

    These are phony liberals whose ignorance and bigotry always prompts them to call for bans on most everything they don’t like–and mandates to impose what they want. They are authoritarian leftists who fear Liberty and oppose the “tolerance and diversity” they SAY theyprefer.

  4. 83ragtop50

    Just to clarify. Homeschooling does not typically result in the student being locked at home with only their parent(s) for instruction. Many of the homeschooled participate in group studies and even competitive sports teams. Without the disruption of undisciplined students and slowing to a crawl for non-English speakers often results in more learning being accomplished in much less time. Those who badmouth it apparently have little if any understanding of the typical homeshooling process. After watching some of the online classes delivered over PBS I am frankly amazed at the dumbed-down curriculum put forth in our public schools.

  5. Robert Roark

    Homeschooling is simply the whipping boy for those who react violently to any threat to their brand of indoctrination. Rather than examining all ideas on cultural values, the homeschool deniers boast their view is the only acceptable one. This, despite the sharp decline in educational performance over the last 50 years as shown by global comparisons. And also despite the coarsening of society and increase in victimhood. As much as deniers wish their choice of education would produce better, more tolerant citizens, the opposite has occurred. Their only recourse is to ridicule any alternative method and rely on their media support team to carry their water. Regardless of your religious beliefs, the current public school system is a one-land street to socialism.

  6. William Delzell

    While I can understand why some parents want to homeschool their children such as school that lack sufficient learning resources such as library and audio-visual services, poorly paid teachers, poorly maintained physical school plants, dangerous neighborhoods (including traffic-crossings and pedestrian accidents) etc, the real cause for this mess is the lack of inadequate funding for public schools in favor of high-tuition private academies (including the controversial use of PUBLIC money to subsidize RELIGIOUS and other charter schools.

    With that said, if I ever felt the need to homeschool my children, I would want to be damned sure that I was well versed in my children’s academic subjects and homework assignments. I would also want to be sure that I had the time from my job and that I had a home that could provide my children with adequate quiet space and privacy to do their school work. Also, if my children were of different age groups, attending to each child’s individual needs would be a challenge.

    In addition to these concerns, what about my children’s’ chance to interact with their peers so that they can develop essential social skills that will help them in adulthood to find a decent job, to be a good parent, etc.?

    While I have a good knowledge of History, Foreign Languages, Humanities, Grammar, and Social Sciences, I do, however, have serious deficiencies in Math and Science. If I don’t have a good knowledge of my children’s school subjects, I would definitely want a person who is well versed in these particular subjects to teach my children.

    In a nutshell, I would have to have a very compelling reason to want to homeschool my students and to be absolutely sure that I could either tackle their school subjects or afford to hire somebody who does. Finally, homeschool does not deal with the development of essential social skills. Thus, only as a last resort would I consider homeschooling; never as a first convenience!

    1. Horatio Bunce

      A convenience? Forgoing an income, refusing to have your neighbors pay $10k+ for your child to attend “free” public school, still pay all the taxes yourself but be continually discriminated against by the government and Rockefeller-funded “academics”. These are conveniences to you? If you think the government schools are under funded at $10k and up per student, how do you think the home school students keep winning with ZERO public funds and at least one parent sacrificing time (income) to teach their children?

      This çoronahoax lockdown should make the public system totally collapse if what you believe about socializing is true. Those kids have been apart for months, and not coming back before August. But then you socializer missionaries always seem to ignore that the public schools are already closed 3-4 months a year. Shouldn’t all those public school kids have to repeat this semester? After all it is impossible to provide a proper education outside of your precious school building. Just think, a whole half year, getting 100% taxpayer funding, no accountability. I guess they will just be socially promoted?

  7. Traditional Thinker

    Sad to see professors in ivy league schools spewing anti Christian propaganda. If she knew anything about our Lord Jesus Christ, she would encourage even more home schooling if her agenda was creating a better society. Exposing children to depravity and anti-Christian beliefs is not detrimental to human growth or development. If the professor truly knew the word of God, she would realize that a nation without faith will cease to exist. This will eventually become the end result because that’s what the word of God reveals. Professors like bartholet are merely speeding the process by neglecting and mocking the creator. Are all professing Christian’s truly Christians?, of course not, their lives are not in line with God’s commands of what It means to be Christ like, however, expect true Christians to be as passionate when it comes to defending our Lord as these people are when it comes to destroying faith in Him.