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#1 of 7 Old 10-23-2010, 03:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I just wanted to introcude myself as this part of the forum is the reason i subscribed. Reading your stories i thought it would be polite to let you know i am here

I am a proud mom of young girls, we are a dutch family. Overhere homeschooling isn't a legal option. When your child is 4 you take them to kindergarten, when the child is 5 the law says school it's an obligation and 2nd and last year of kindergarten starts. After that school réally begins and is mandatory to the age of 18.

Homeschooling just isn't a choice, really. The only way to homeschool is to don't let your kid go to school for religious reasons or your life philosophy (like attachment parenting, or humanism for example). But there's a catch; you only can do so if there's no school within reasonable distance who provides education for your religion or outlook on life. And, an even bigger catch, if your child DOES go to school it's a hell of a job to rethink your options, you didn't had a problem with religion/life philosphy and that school when you send them there in the first place so why would you now (yes, like it's impossible to change your beliefs..)

So, you can't legally choose to homeschool just because, well you just want to choose homeschool.

Nearly 0,02% of the dutch kids are getting homeschooled right now. So homeschool, let alone unschooling, is really a unknown thing overhere. It's there but it isn't, in a way (make me think, it's kind of like our drugs policy, so its a dutch thing i guess

When i say we choose to homeschool we often hear; 'Can you do that? Is that even legal?', people are really astonished, even teachers ask that question.

Unschooling is a thing i don't even dare to bring up sometimes for obvious reasons.

The people who áre homeschooling (also because they want to and because they believe it's a great way to grow and learn) are sort of connecting online but here are just so few om them.

So. That's why i subscribed here. To read and learn about homeschooling but unschooling in particular.

See you around!

PS. I'm fullblooded dutch so the grammar and spelling in english isn't perfect, i know...

A dutch mom of 2 incredible fun and sweet girls born in the spring of '07 and '10.
They are free like bumblebees and we want to keep it that way, that's why we unschool.
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#2 of 7 Old 10-23-2010, 09:32 AM
 
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elcome

I thought your spelling and grammar were fabulous, by the way.

I'm glad you found our forum here. I hope we can help to provide the support that your situation is otherwise lacking.

Personally I'd enjoy hearing more about how you un/homeschool in such an unsupportive environment.

peace,

Maryhippie.gif

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#3 of 7 Old 10-23-2010, 12:36 PM
 
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Welcome.

We are Americans. We live in Arizona. My husband lived in Holland for a year and is fluent in Dutch. He worked for the KLS (flight school associated with the KLM.) He worked in Eelde (or was it Paterswalde?) and lived in Zuidlaren (?spelling.)

He was a friend when I went there to visit him. For an American, Holland is just the most romantic place to fall in love. During the following years we traveled to and through Holland every year. He no longer has that job and I miss all my favorite Dutch people and places. Holland is such a big part of the foundation of our marriage.

Every time I hear that homeschool is, essentially, illegal in Holland, I am surprised. They are such a progressive country you would think they'd be strong supporters of homeschooling.

I have a question for you. I have fantasies of returning to Holland to live for awhile. Not sure how we'd finance that. Do you know if we would be allowed to homeschool our kids if we were there for a year or so. They've never been to school.

(I walked away to get a wipe and my 2 year old had somehow submitted this.)

Anyway, I so love Holland and really miss it. I'd love to share our unschooling journeys. My kids are 5 (in December) and 2.

Created an instant family (7/89 and 5/91) in 1997. Made a baby boy 12/05 adopted a baby girl 8/08. Ask me about tandem adoptive nursing. Now living as gluten, dairy, cane sugar, and tomato free vegetarians. Homeschooling and loving it.

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#4 of 7 Old 10-23-2010, 04:44 PM
 
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Welcome! Well, somehow my Dutch dad and his wife managed to keep their son out of school in NL. Not sure how they did it, but they did!

As you mentioned, I think that there is a small support network in NL. I think that homeschooling/unschooling is possible somehow, but I also think that it will be tiresome dealing with the red tape.
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#5 of 7 Old 10-24-2010, 01:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Paterswolde and Eelde are like snuggling, so close haha. And Zuidlaren is spelled right! I used to camp there when i was small. Nice to hear you love our country that much And i think the same way, we do have a progressive country, that's something i love about it. But at the same time there's a thing called 'betutteling', may be best explained as the government thinking we are stupid and can't make our own decisions so they make up stupid little rules for everything.
And i thought myself education was so important that it was really a good thing that's it's mandatory. Now i think LEARNING is important and that parents should have a REAL choice. It's a bit doublesided though, because once you get your dispensation you are free as a bird. You don't have to turn in portfolios, no one is checking up on your kids and you aren't obligated to educate them; it's not a school-dispensation but a education-dispensation so to speak.

I have mixed feelings about that. On one hand you could say that's like heaven when you want to unschool instead of homeschool. On the other, because it's so unusual to do it this only gives more misunderstanding and worries with people who don't know it. Not just relatives and friends but for example; the pre-school my daughter went for a couple of months (5 hours in the week, in total) wrote a concerned letter to our family doctor because i told them we chose to homeschool. We had to do that because of the dispensation rules later on. I was so mad, like we are abusing her?!

And there are friends of mine who really respect our choice and say that if they had known about it they maybe would have considerd it. Or they just really like the idea but don't want to experiment with their own kids But there are a lot of people who just can't hide the fact that -even when they try- they are convinced our girls will just be dumb and stupid forever (they are 3.5 and 0.5 and they are small but never have been dumb and stupid so how on earth can they STAY that way..)
Homeschooling isn't something a parent can do, another cliche. Teachers do a 4 year study and A Mom thinks she's able too teach, just like that??? And how on earth will they ever understand the basics (jep, we as parents apparently are stupid as well I hear that one a lot! I sometimes don't know where to began to answer that one And that's when we say we homeschool....unschooling isn't even mentioned yet at that point

Now, too answer the move-to-Holland-question (finally ) Yes you CAN live overhere and homeschool your children. It IS legal to keep your children out of school if you have reasons for it (which i mentioned in the first post), there are example letters to use. You don't ask, you 'just let them know'. In the short letter you state what your religion or philosophy is and that's there no school near you who can provide education based on that. 'Near you' is about 20 kilometres and in our country there are regions where a LOT happens on 20km, it's tiny. But if you do some soulsearching you mostly can find such a reason, for instance, ours is humanism and attachment parenting. Humanism isn't a term we usually use to explain who we are in life but IF you have to name it, that would be it. There is a short list of life philosophies that has been used in the past with a positive result, usefull because it's a bit more a grey area then religion. You just NEVER say you homeschool because you don't like schools or their teaching methods, that's not a legal reason to keep your kid at home. But well, i think that never is the main reason, if you feel that way there is a deeper reason for it and that reason counts. I don't think most people homeschool because they are bored otherwise, it's because of your beliefs one way or the other.
Btw, the local registrars in charge of taking care every child goes to school often don't even know it's legal, so sometimes it's confusing and they want you to come over and explain. Never do that, never TALK to them. If he think's you 'just don't like schools' your changes are gone. Thankfully there's a website with people who looked in to this and who keep track, they can explain step by step what not to do or do. And last but not least, i know there's a new american mom on a mailinglist i'm a member of, she moved here and her kids are homeschooled as well.

We ourselves want to move to Sweden in 4, 5 years from now. But a couple of months ago homeschooling became illegal there.. I hope it changes back, there is a lot of protest so hopefully that helps. Sometimes i think we'd better move to the UK, homeschooling is way more common there. There are co-ops, regular and regional meetings and you get discounts at amusement parks and museums and stuff like that. You can forget about most of that in Holland, we don't exist

A dutch mom of 2 incredible fun and sweet girls born in the spring of '07 and '10.
They are free like bumblebees and we want to keep it that way, that's why we unschool.
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#6 of 7 Old 10-24-2010, 05:03 AM
 
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Someone recently posted here a link to an interview with...gosh, was it John Holt. It was one of the big voices in homeschooling in the US. It was written in the 70s or 80s. He talked about all the legal hurdles families faced over wanting to homeschool. He said as many as 10,000 families were homeschooling in the US. I have heard there are now 2.2 million homeschooled kids in the states. It is legal in every state. Perhaps you are at the front of a movement in Holland. I'm sure you're schools there are better than American schools, but as learning (as compared to teaching) becomes more and more discussed, most likely you will see more and more homeschooling families there.

Created an instant family (7/89 and 5/91) in 1997. Made a baby boy 12/05 adopted a baby girl 8/08. Ask me about tandem adoptive nursing. Now living as gluten, dairy, cane sugar, and tomato free vegetarians. Homeschooling and loving it.

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#7 of 7 Old 11-02-2010, 11:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I sure hope so! Sometimes it's a bit scary there a just so few of us overhere. On the other hand, the country is so very small, the few that dó choose to homeschool/unschool never live REAL far away

There are a couple of democratic schools started by parents or teachers (much like Sudbury), so that's a start!

A dutch mom of 2 incredible fun and sweet girls born in the spring of '07 and '10.
They are free like bumblebees and we want to keep it that way, that's why we unschool.
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