For us, big process. My family is very, I don't know. They think ALL children belong in school with the professionals (I think they need to step back and define professional and then compare that to what we have running our schools). They have no clue what is going on. They are still on the mindset that parents should not be involved in a child's upbringing. They also feel siblings should be kept separate and "independent." It does not dawn on them that all children will lean on someone and look up to someone. It is just a matter of whether it is their own family or strangers.
Sure, if we lived back in the good ole days, my children might be in school. You know those days, where your child's teacher has a lot of training, loves all children, and probably was born in the same nursery as you and your own parents grew up with your child's teacher's parents. Oh, and subjects were simply taught, not political loaded with constantly changing experiments in how to teach children. That all thrown in with a list off all the things a child is supposed to know, things being added each year with nothing taken out until everything they do learn is so watered down that it means nothing. Not to mention the part where they kill the spirit of the children.
OK..so..everytime I turn around it seems I hear some stupid agenda filled excuse as to why my children "belong" at public school. Again...define "belong" anywhere. Maybe the people butting in to my business "belong" out of my business.
I started homeschooling because extreme bullying was going on where we live. But I was only homeschooling one and the other remained in school. It did not take long to start noticing how bad the schools were. They were ranked top in the state, yet, they were bad. I tried to bring up with certain people, asking if they realized the local district had given up teaching spelling, handwriting, grammar. And they were using calculators for math and the children were spending much of their days on computer. And then there is the fitness initiative time. The children would walk on a track, in a circle, for 20 minutes each day. It looked like it was right out of a prison movie, it was awful. While those kids were quietly walking on the track, slowly because it was a small track and crowded, my children were running, jumping, playing, and maybe taking various classes depending on the year and day. We tried ice skating, swimming, gymnastics, dance, soccer, rock climbing, hiking, etc. While the kids at the school were copying down exact copies of the teachers art project, my children were creating their own. And my children could create every day if they wanted, not just from 1-1:30 on Tuesdays. And when my children had to go to the bathroom, they could. They did not spend large parts of their days standing in lines and waiting for bathrooms, specials, lunch, classes, etc. But most of all, while the kids at school were spending 2 hrs a day for a week, mindlessly copying a story off the board (with spelling errors I must add as the teacher was not that great of a speller) my children were reading stories, creating stories, and interacting with their environment. And if my children did any copywork, I made sure the spelling was correct. While the children at the public schools were mindlessly punching in numbers on calculators, mine were learning how to do actual math and even learned their math facts (which is not that hard to do once you commit to it). Oh, did I mention that the state adopted math curriculum had children talking about how they felt about their problems? And how they contributed to their community...in math class? For honors geometry, my son had to make a poster sized greeting card, which, btw, was arbitrarily graded. For honors algebra, he had to make a monster out of card stock, they spent a couple weeks of class time on that.
Anyway, I could go on and on, but...ok...I need to end this.
The point is, I cannot figure out why anyone would want their children in the public school once they see what I see, and many other homeschoolers see. And the criticizers see all this, yet, complain about homeschooling. I stupidly put my children back in public school this past fall, for the fall only. It was hell. It was an academic black hole. Everyone here loves the local public schools and think they are so great. When I post, people assume if I say the local schools are bad, that it means I live in the innercity or have low ranked schools. I do not. I live in Blue Ribbon schools' zones. All the schools I am zoned for are exemplary. I am also in what is considered a high income area. Doesn't matter, the schools still do not meet with my standards.
Did I mention the part where students were having sex in the bathrooms and doing drugs in the classrooms?
SO...my mother and siblings are very upset my son won't be in public school this fall, again. They claim he needs to learn social skills. I say he has been there since 1997, if they were going to teach him social skills, they would have done it already. They insist his low social skills is the reason he needs to be there, but my child who homeschooled all along doesn't have social problems at all, she is very socially adept. They say this is just because they are different kids and you cannot compare. And on that note, since she IS so great socially, she needs to be in public school where she can really shine. OK..so, one child belongs there because despite being in public school since 3 yrs old (public preschool) he has social issues and they believe the public schools teach social skills and the next child belongs there because after being homeschooled for several years, she is very socially adept and she would do better there? The logic completely fails me. My daughter (the younger one) is far ahead academically and my son (the older one) has been falling. But, my son was far ahead of my daughter long ago and tests higher on Cogat (cognitive skills test) but he has a hard time even passing a class. My daughter was in special ed when she was in public school and my son in the gifted program. Now my son has serious academic issues while my daughter is the one who is way ahead. They use that as an excuse too. They tell me she will do so well so she needs to be there and that my son needs to be there because he has problems he needs to fix.
Once someone has an agenda in the head, it sometimes moves to the point where you have to lay down the law and ignore them. I am sorry.
Boy, I was long winded!!