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No place like home for ‘un-schoolers’

Twelve-year-old Travis Sherriff-Clayton won’t be going back to school Tuesday.

He never started.

The articulate Newmarket boy, who loves reading and statistics, is one of an estimated 80,000 Canadian children who are home-schooled and learn everything they know outside the formal public and private education system.

‘I don’t feel left out. I feel good about staying home,’ Travis says, to a chorus of support from his three younger siblings and four home-schooled cousins.

‘We get to go on way more field trips to great places like the Ontario Science Centre, (Collingwood’s) Scenic Caves and the McMichael Gallery,’ he says.

‘We’re usually not bored because we have a whole bunch of games and books and fun things to play with,’ adds sister Mackenzie, 8, pointing to a stack of boxes in the living room of the family’s sprawling red brick house.

Home-schooling, ‘un-schooling’ or what many parents prefer to call home-based learning, grew out of the North American education reforms of the 1960s.

In the early days, home-schoolers fell into two groups: Parents who wanted to give their children a religious education and those who had embraced ‘back to the land’ alternative lifestyles.” Read more…

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