Katy Perry is successful by most measures. She is certainly a celebrity. She has hit songs, She has money and recognition.
But Katy Perry carries a concern that she is not very well educated, or at least not as well as she’d like to be.
“I’m kind of bummed at this stage that I didn’t have a great education because I could really use that these days,” she told Yahoo.
It turns out that Perry dropped out of high school during her freshman year. If this is what dropping out gets you, she’s not exactly a poster child for dropout prevention. But that’s not how she sees it.
“I’ve learned to educate myself at this stage and how to continue my education at any age,” she said. “I’m going on 30 and I’m still very thirsty for information. On tour, we go to different museums and get to soak up all kinds of different cultural experiences.”
So why did Katy end up coming up short in the education department when she was younger? A lot of it had to do with her parents’ work as church-planting pastors. They moved around a lot, and it took a toll on Katy’s schooling.
“I was being pulled out of school even in the middle of school and sometimes being home-schooled. Sometimes we were sent to these really half-Christian, half-education, I-don’t-know-what-they-were schools,” she explained.
Sometimes home-schooling is a good alternative for kids who just can’t do well in the schools where they live. But a lot of religious folks are pulling their kids form schools to get them away from what they see as harmful influences. They feel they can educate their children just as well from home. In fact, 91 percent of homeschooled students had parents who said that a concern about the environment of other schools was an important reason for homeschooling their child.
Vyckie Garrison, a former evangelical who home-schooled her own kids, explains how she sees this rising phenomenon.
“There is an atmosphere of real terror among some evangelicals. They are horrified by the fact that Obama is president, and they see the New Atheist movement as a vocal, in-your-face threat. Plus, they are obsessed with the End Times, and believe that the Apocalypse could happen any day now… They see a demon on every corner.
“We home-schooled because we wanted to protect our children from what we viewed as the total secularization of America. We listened to people like Rush Limbaugh, who told us that America was in the clutches of evil liberal feminist atheists.”
But there has been a cost of this home-schooling fervor. Parents often refuse to report information that could be used to get good statistical data on the success of home-schooling. But anecdotally, there are plenty of stories like Katy Perry’s to suggest that home-schooled kids are getting the short end of the education stick.
“It was a real struggle to do the basics,” Garrison says. “So it didn’t take long for my kids to fall far behind. One of my daughters could not read at 11 years old.”
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