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Wayne Root in Vegas Seven Weekly: ‘Home-school to Harvard: A Libertarian’s view on how to save education—in your own home’

Wayne Root in this week’s “Seven magazine” in Las Vegas:

America is in shambles from sea to shining sea. National unemployment hovers near 10 percent. The real estate market is scorched-earth terrain. The stock market is crumbling—along with our retirement accounts. Retail sales are vanishing. Consumer confidence is plummeting. And our U.S. credit rating has been downgraded for the first time in history.

But all of that is child’s play compared to our failing education system. The decline of our public school system is a national embarrassment. And Las Vegas is in even worse shape than the rest of the country. The graduation rate in the Clark County School District was less than 45 percent in 2008, according to Education Week magazine. Do the words fraud and disgrace come to mind?

Yet through all this gloom, there is a ray of hope. Home-schooling works. I’ll share my personal story, with the hope and belief that others can also benefit from taking charge of their children’s education.

Keep reading…


  1. paulie paulie September 21, 2011

    She’ll beat ’em hands down 🙂

  2. AroundtheblockAFT AroundtheblockAFT September 21, 2011

    Congratulations to whole Root family for this achievement. Make sure Dakota takes note of every one of her Harvard classmates ’cause odds are good one or more of them will be running for top office in 30 years!!!

  3. Michael H. Wilson Michael H. Wilson September 20, 2011

    Nice piece Wayne. I hope your daughter enjoy Harvard and the Boston area. It is a great place.

  4. Andy Andy September 20, 2011

    “paulie // Sep 19, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Kind of surprised this one got no comments yet. Maybe it’s because it had so little for Wayne’s detractors to pick nits with 🙂

    I thought it was really good.”

    Nothing to pick on here. Wayne’s family rocks!

  5. Obama, MIA Obama, MIA September 20, 2011

    It’s nice that Root was able to write about homeschooling without blaming Obama for inventing public eduction.

    I wish Root wrote more pieces that were thoughtful, rather than Obama-obsessed rants.

  6. Chuck Moulton Chuck Moulton September 19, 2011

    Great article! I suspect all of Wayne Root’s kids will get into top universities.

    I’ve long planned to home school when someday I have kids. It’s getting easier nowadays with all the resources available from the Internet (e.g., Khan Academy).

    I went through public school myself — though in an affluent suburban district. I was disgusted the whole way through with how every class catered to the average student rather than the exceptional. I found most of the teaching to be a waste of time… usually I could learn in 5 minutes what it took the teachers an hour to lecture. That invariably left me bored out of my mind and my grades suffered.

    I got a perfect on my SAT’s too, but I certainly didn’t get into Harvard. (I was rejected from 15 different top schools and attended a third rate super-safety college.) My high school actively blocked me from taking advanced placement courses. It took me until my senior year to realize I could just read the textbooks and take the AP tests on my own regardless of what courses they would let me in. That allowed me to enter college as a junior and have enough credits for senior standing at the end of my first semester. If I had it to do over again I would have skipped high school, taken the remaining AP tests I didn’t have time for, and learned a lot of extra non-academic skills (like the piano mentioned in the article).

    I feel like I’ve been playing catch up to my friends who entered college a few years early and/or attended better quality universities.

    That said, I have a poster hanging above my desk that summarizes the most important lesson I’ve learned in all my years in academics:

    “Never let your schooling interfere with your education.” — Mark Twain

  7. paulie paulie September 19, 2011

    Nick, did you read the article?

  8. Nick Moala Nick Moala September 19, 2011

    Support strong public schools with good union jobs, benefits and pensions, everything else is just a ploy.

  9. Thomas L. Knapp Thomas L. Knapp September 19, 2011


    Nothing to apologize for, and no, you did not offend me. You just surprised me, given that I’ve gone out of my way to recognize Wayne’s positive attributes when possible.

  10. NewFederalist NewFederalist September 19, 2011

    If I offended you, Tom I apologize.

  11. Thomas L. Knapp Thomas L. Knapp September 19, 2011


    I’m surprised you think that I’m one of Wayne’s “detractors.” I always just try to call it the way I see it, and I probably mention him positively at least as often as negatively.

    In this case, I hadn’t commented yet because I hadn’t seen the article yet. I think it’s a great piece, although as a homeschooling parent I may be biased.

  12. Wayne Root Wayne Root September 19, 2011


    Hi Debra.

    Thanks for the kind words- as always.


  13. Wayne Root Wayne Root September 19, 2011

    @5 Hi Jill…

    I hope you realize I agree with you. Homeschooling is not for everyone. But there is much to be learned from our experiences. I always am careful to say that I respect any choice parents make. All have value.

    But the main lesson is that alternative education should be an option for every parent.

    That’s what the LP should stand for…not ending public schools (which just will not happen)…nor recommending home-schooling…

    but rather to fight for choice for all parents. To fight for parental freedom, more competition for public schools, moving funding to the state and local level, and fighting for vouchers so all parents can use their property tax money to look at alternatives and have options.

    That’s always my intent when talking about the success of home-schooling.

  14. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt September 19, 2011

    I’ll also say, however, that people can raise a good human even if home-schooling isn’t a good option. It takes being involved with the education the child is getting, deprogramming when necessary, and getting to know the teachers, kids your child spends time with, and the parents of those kids. After all, most of us are products of a public school system, and we’ve all learned to think for ourselves.

  15. NewFederalist NewFederalist September 19, 2011

    “Kind of surprised this one got no comments yet. Maybe it’s because it had so little for Wayne’s detractors to pick nits with.”

    Let’s see if we can’t round up the usual suspects… George? Tom? Are you there? 😉

  16. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt September 19, 2011

    I’m always delighted to see parents brag about their kids (since I do shamelessly), but, in this case, it’s certainly warranted. Debra and Wayne have indeed raised a wonderful young lady, and I’m sure the other kids will be fine adults as well.

  17. LibertarianGirl LibertarianGirl September 19, 2011

    yeah nothing bad to say here , it pretty obvious Wayne and Debra Root are excellent parents. Debra has always been gracious and kind , and Dakota Root is an exceptional young lady..a perfect SAT score , thts extremely rare. Wayne should be beyond proud of her , Im certain the other 4(?) kids will be equally successful.

    I also liked the article..

  18. paulie paulie September 19, 2011

    Kind of surprised this one got no comments yet. Maybe it’s because it had so little for Wayne’s detractors to pick nits with 🙂

    I thought it was really good.

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