Why We Made The Choice To Homeschool Our Children
We are one week away from the start of homeschooling and I have been very busy with all of the prep. I have received a few questions in regards to homeschooling, but the most popular question has been, why did I choose to do this. Because this answer is long an complex, I decided to address it on it's own separate blog post and answer all of the other questions asked on another blog post.
Before I begin, I do want to address that this is a choice that we feel is right for us right now. I understand that it might not be the best choice for other families, or that not everyone is able to dedicate the time needed to homeschooling, even if they wanted to. I also am not saying that we would never go back to regular schooling. I am simply just answering a question that has been asked of me over and over again. Please do not take offense at my reasoning's below as they are just my personal opinions.
1. Classes Are way Too Big
The average class usually has about 25-30 children, and in my opinion that is way too many children for just one teacher. I can go on and on about this subject, but I think you get my point.
2. Bullying Is A Huge Issue
We hear about children getting bullied all of the time. I never really thought that we would even have an issue with bullying until at least middle school. To my surprise, this is a huge issue, even with our very youngest children. My son was bullied in school this past year by a classmate. He was pushed to the grown, shirt stained with grass stains, hit with his own shoe, mocked and kicked. Where I grew up, the expectation would have been to teach my son to fight back and defend himself. However, this is not how I choose to raise him, especially at 5/6 years old.
3. Strict Attendance Policy
We like to travel and the schools have a strict attendance policy. I do not want to limit our child's life experiences and out of classroom learning due to an attendance policy. They also call you as soon as your child complains they are not feeling well, and then count sick time towards attendance too. You have no idea how many times we had to go to the doctor's just to get a note from school, even though we already knew what they were going to say, "Tylenol, fluids and rest". Not only is it a waste of time, but also expensive when you need to pay a co-pay every time you go. There were times I would send Jax to school, even though I knew I would be called right away because he wasn't feeling well, just so that it wouldn't count towards his attendance. Now does that make any sense? Then you start getting phone calls from the school where they tell you they can fail your kid because he/she has too many absences, even though the child is doing really well in school, according to his teachers and progress reports. This is all because they want to meet numbers in the district, which leads me to...
4. Schools Operate Like A Corporation
They are all ranked in different categories, including attendance, state tests, etc. and their goal is to be at the top of the rank. This is why we see the schools now teaching children to pass tests, not learn.
5. You Don't Get To Decide the Curriculum
You don't get to choose what your child learns and what the school funding goes towards. Yes, you can do some voting, and even join the PTO, but that does not guarantee anything. In homeschooling, I can teach my child what we want and what he is interested in. Jaxon is very excited for swimming in PE, painting canvases in art, playing instruments in music, and all of the field trips and outside learning he will do throughout the year.
6. Positive Learning Mentality
Creating a curriculum around my child with things that interest him will lead to him to wanting to learn, rather than being forced to learn. He use to cry every morning because he did not want to go to school. With homeschooling, I will also be able to tailor Jaxon's learning to his pace and preferred style. His natural thirst for learning will be nurtured, and learning will become joy, not torturous.
We are looking forward to the flexibility that our family will now have in regards to every aspect of our lives. Our schedules will now be around family, not school.
8. Long Days
Children are in school for eight hours a day, really only to serve as babysitters so that parents can go to work. The teacher even told me herself, that a lot of time spent in the class is busy work, lining up, recess, etc. made to kill time. Then after spending eight long hours at school, they are expected to spend a few extra hours at home completing homework and doesn't even include extra curricular activities.
9. Mass shootings
Sending my child every day to school was scary with all of the mass shooting that have been occurring. The twenty 6 year old's that were shot and killed five years ago at their school, were only about an hour away from us. This is a very controversial and complex topic so I will just leave it at that.
10. Lack Of Resources In Our Schools
We live in an urban community where resources are limited and schools are not the best. Moving right now is not an option, and private school is not in our budget. Plus, they are not all that much different. My husband and I felt the huge learning gap between us and other students when we went to college, and don't want our children to go through that as well.
I can go on and on as to why I chose to home-school my children, but these are the main reasons. Keep in mind that I have an immense respect for teachers and know that they have very hard jobs, where they are expected to do the most, and have very little to work with. That and they really deserve to be paid much more than they do.