I do not believe that the debate should be between public government vs home education. I can come up with strong arguments for both points of view - I've even debated many of these in public settings. Both options offer opportunities and benefits to our children. I think there is a more important discussion that needs to occur in every home: the importance of parental involvement in the training and education of their children.
Ask any teacher and they will tell you that one of the most important factors that influence the outcome of a child's education is parental involvement. This is important, because teachers will only be involved for a brief period of time in the life of our children. Even the finest teachers in the finest schools only have but a few hours a day to influence their class. From that, subtract time for distractions, (breaks, disciplinary interruptions, lunch, assemblies. etc.) Divide the remaining time by the number of students in the class, and you will realize just how little time that is really available in each day for the education of each individual student.
Theoretically speaking, even if a school were operating at 100% efficiency - educating the full time that our children were in attendance - they would only have the students for what, 6 hours a day? What parents do with their children for the remaining 18 hours a day will largely determine the effectiveness of their child's education.
While I'm thankful that our government provides educational opportunities for children, the government cannot - and should not - be responsible to provide the total education of our children. It's not their job. That's my job and Kathy's job as parents. If you're a parent, it's your job, too. Parents, you must be involved, not only in selecting the format and venue for their child's education, but in every aspect of encouragement and reinforcement that goes on until your child leaves home as an adult.
For parents that choose to educate their children at home, as we do, or for parents that choose to send their children to a government school, parochial school, or even the finest private school, I say: BE INVOLVED. Be involved and stay involved, all the way through high-school and college graduation. That's a big responsibility. Far more important than career or work or recreation.
Outside of our spiritual responsibility to our children, I believe it's the most important responsibility that we as parents have.