I don't feel there is a mystique to public school, and in fact was terrified at the idea of sending my child into the public system. I heavily considered private school, but decided to give public a chance due to the cost (almost free -- we pay $200/month for K in my city). But now that he's actually in public school, it has far exceeded my expectations. It's not just about learning math/reading, but also the classroom social dynamic, exposure to new concepts/skills, and making friends w/ children from diverse backgrounds. I've volunteered multiple times just to observe the classroom at work. There really is something created there that I cannot duplicate at home. Also, the teacher is amazing & has cultivated a really supportive environment for the kids. My son loves going (and I think loves having a place away from home that is all his, akin to our workplaces). I compare his experience with that of his homeschooled best friend, and feel that the public system in my town offers more than the local homeschooling communities. My son may learn certain math and reading concepts faster w/ 1:1 attention at home at the K level, if homeschooled, but the group dynamic in school spurs him to learn in other ways that are better accomplished in school (ie. creativity, social skills, public speaking, attention and behavior, teambuilding, learning how to not always being the "best" or "first"). I place value in all of these types of learning. Additionally, our K-8 school has a science specialist that forms curriculum for all the grades, and much of the middle school curriculum is taught by teachers w/ advanced degrees; I like that they really understand the material at a deeper level than myself, for they can offer stronger teaching in these areas than just me and a workbook. And in his future HS career, he will have IB and AP options, all free. Finally, I like being just the parent, where our activites are fun first, educational second.
Obviously people come to different conclusions for their own children, hence the many types of education. I echo what has been stated on this thread multiple times, that it's great families have choices!
Edited by pregnant@40 - 12/18/10 at 1:38am
Originally Posted by Lisa1970
Most people who home school have very little of this, very little money, yet still do a better job than public schools. It is not hard to teach 1+1 and you don't need tutors for every little thing. Public school basically has a mystique surrounding it. People think it is doing something that they cannot possibly do at home, something good at that. What they don't realize is that the teachers are just human beings and the books are just books and the kids are still the same kids, and so on, the buildings are made of dry wall and brick and wood and such, etc etc etc. I used to teach and honestly, there is no magic to it.
You do not need endless money for any number of supplies, you don't need tutors, you don't need any of that.
I think it would be good if you got a really close up look at what really goes on in a school day at school, and in the week and over the course of a year. You might sit back and say "hey wait, I could have done better, and not spent tax payers dollars at the rate of thousands of dollars a child."