Another Vote for Homeschooling

You get a choice to take a snow day or not. At least if the public school kids are out, you have the option to do some school work. You are required to keep records in most states and report and have a minimum number of days attended. But you get a lot of choice in curriculum and school days in most places.

The public school kids here (of which Shelby is one to receive state services for autism) lost 3 school days this week for snow which is some kind of record. We regularly lose school days but more often than not, it’s for a hurricane not a winter storm. Some parents are now complaining, virilently, about making those days up because they don’t want a) to lose a Saturday b) to lose Spring break and c) to add onto their child’s school year. Well, they have to be made up because laws state that the child has to be in school 180 days. And in our state, there is a law that restricts school start and end dates begun by a mother who whined on television and the radio that her children were “being deprived of a summer.” The business community supported it because, well they don’t want to lose revenue brought in by tourists. So it was even less effort than a hop, skip and a jump to get that passed. So, now we find ourselves stifled by law and with parents who don’t want to teach their children that life has consequences. You got 3 great days to play in the snow (which is rare here to even have snow) but now those days have to be made up. 

Parents are complaining that making up the school days takes away from family time. Which brings me to homeschooling. When one chooses to homeschool one makes a concerted effort at family time. Not all family time is necessarily going to be “fun stuff” like going on vacation or to zoos or amusement parks. Some of it is going to be math drills, doing chores, and learning how to share a bathroom. That is not to say those same lessons cannot be learned in families who choose public school for whatever reason, but homeschooling gives you more opportunities for both.

I say this with a somewhat conflicted heart  because Shelby needs the public school system and I wish, desparately things could be different and she could be home with us “learning” (pre-school curriculum is more learning through play) and I know a day will come when I may not be able to effectively teach some subjects to my kids (math immediately comes to mind). And we haven’t made up our minds 100% about the boys yet. We still have a little bit of time on that, but I find that beyond the freedom to teach religion, the freedom to choose my own curriculum and speed it up or slow it down for the kids individual needs, the ability to manipulate a schedule to suit our family is by far one of the most appealing aspects.

And I won’t have to be one of the mothers posting angrily about missing days on facebook.