I will start out by saying that I have zero judgment towards parents who choose homeschool over public school, public school over homeschool, private school, or no traditional schooling at all. There are so many factors that go into deciding our child's education and not all of them are things we can do much about. Also, my saying "public school" throughout this post really means any kind of organized, get up in the morning and go to a building where there is a staff that would teach my child rather than doing it myself. I KNOW it's not all considered to be public. But for the sake of convenience, I will use it that way.
That said, the school system in my area is absolutely terrible. So much so that I wish I could take my school-aged niece and nephew out of it and homeschool them myself. A will not be going to public school, and ESPECIALLY not if we are still in this area when she is that age. However, even if we move I don't think I will put her in school. I have always loved the idea of homeschooling. We get to choose the curriculum, the trips, the activities. We can do things during "school hours" that we wouldn't normally be able to do. It would be less hectic, and A would get a lot more out of what she's learning because we will be able to teach her the way she learns best.
I love, even now, being able to teach A at the pace she is ready to learn at. She is doing A LOT of things at 2 1/2 years old that most 4 and 5-year-olds are just now learning in school, and with other things she's not quite progressing as quickly. In public school, she would be hindered in both directions. She wouldn't be allowed to blossom fully where her strengths are concerned and she wouldn't be given the time and attention to learn what she may struggle with. To have a scale from below average, to average, to gifted (as a public school does) doesn't really give kids a chance. Some kids learn faster than others, and not everyone can comprehend something the same way, but they are all put through and all are expected to perform the same, which doesn't happen and that approach is ineffective. I believe that most of the kids who struggle in school would benefit if they stopped trying to keep everyone at the same level and just worked with them on an individual basis.
I want A to have the best possible chance at a good education, and I know I can provide that for her. I won't let her education be a competition to see who is the smartest and who will go into the dumb kid class. No child is dumb, but some are made to feel that way because no one will take the time to figure out what THEY need to succeed. I don't think public education would be a bad idea if more people cared about making it the best it can be, and making sure EVERY student has a shot. The teachers who care, and the parents who want the best for their child need more support and people need to see that these kids ARE our future. Though, I guess that would be getting more into politics and investing in education what with having enough teachers and enough money to be able to do all of those things. That is a topic for another time.
Every parent has to make that decision for their child and their family. I choose homeschooling, because I feel that it will give A what she needs to do the best that she can. I choose to take responsibility for her education because while there are SO many wonderful and hard-working educators out there trying to give kids the best, there are too many who just don't care. I'm not willing to put A's future in the hands of those people. What better way to ensure my daughter has a good education than being taught by someone who knows her the best? Me.
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