Kerry McDonald

Kerry McDonald

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Kerry McDonald is a Senior Contributor for Intellectual Takeout. She has a B.A. in economics from Bowdoin College and a Master’s degree in education policy from Harvard University. Follow her on Twitter.

Recent blog posts by this author

Schools Are Tracking Your Child’s Mental Health—Whether You Like It or Not

A worrying trend is emerging in schools across the country. With increasing regularity, school districts are tracking students’ mental health and raising flags if a screening shows something amiss.   Student mental health tracking is...

Survey Reveals Double Standard on Raising Taxes for Public Higher Ed

We’ve all been there. You answer that unknown number on your phone and the caller asks, “Do you want to help save the sea turtles?” Yes! Or you’re walking in the city square and smiley people with clipboards and colorful shirts ask if you want to...

Stop Criminalizing Parenthood

When I was young, I had a paper route. It was actually my big brother’s but he subcontracted to me part of the route closest to our house and gave me the appropriate portion of his earnings. I had about three streets I was responsible for and...

Pediatricians Are Now Writing ‘Play Prescriptions’

Kids need to play. It seems like an obvious statement, as central to childhood as eating peanut butter-and-jelly sandwiches and chasing fireflies. For generations, parents have known that a play-filled childhood is essential for healthy physical and...

Should Parents Have the Right to Choose a Safe School?

As back-to-school time approaches, parents are bracing for school-related trauma. The threat of bullying, violence, school shootings, and mental health maladies looms large as a new school year emerges. A 2018 PDK poll found that one-third...

How My Unschooled Child Learned to Read Financial Statements (It Started with Silly YouTube Videos)

It started with a “Dude Perfect” video on YouTube. A couple of years ago, when Jack was very interested in basketball, he found these guys who create fun videos about making baskets with all sorts of twists and turns. He continued to watch...

When Playing Hooky Leads to Police Investigations, Interrogations, and Fines

With Memorial Day Weekend approaching, many Americans may hit the road early to avoid traffic to their favorite holiday destinations, or catch a Thursday flight to make a weekend stay at Grandma’s less rushed. For some German families, who...

In the Wake of Mass Shootings, Parents Reconsider Mass Schooling

In the wake of recent tragic school shootings, anxious parents are contemplating homeschooling to protect their children. After February’s school shooting in Parkland, Florida, the Miami Herald reported that more parents were considering the...

Homeschooling Freedoms Are Under Threat. Will Parents Defend Them?

Homeschoolers today have it easy. Many of us were in diapers when, in 1977, educator John Holt created Growing Without Schooling, the first newsletter to connect and encourage homeschooling families. Holt and other social reformers provided the...

We Don't Give Our Kids Exams. But That Does Not Mean They Are Not Tested.

"If you don't teach them, how will they ever learn?" "If you give them freedom, how will they gain discipline?" "Without schooling, won't they just do nothing all day?" These questions are only a sampling of the typical unschooler's...

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