The skinny on homeschooling

My husband recently wrote about homeschooling and how this particular freedom could be curtailed in coming years under a second Obama administration. The post received a fair amount of comments, most in agreement.

But, of course, anytime you mention homeschooling, you get the folks who say things like:

Homeschooling’s fine, I guess, but the kids are all trolls with dark circles under their eyes from playing World of Warcraft all day.

Or, It’s clear when you meet homeschool kids that they have no idea how to get along with their peers.

Or, The homeschooling moms I know sit around in their pajamas eating brownie mix and watching Pinky Dinky Doo.

Listen, before I began to seriously investigate homeschooling, I had some prejudices, too. But, like all prejudices, they were ill-informed. A little research cured me. I spent a full year looking into the homeschooling community – both national and local – before pulling my daughter from her 2nd grade class here in our public school. We loved the school. We loved the teachers. Our daughter was just fine. But she wasn’t thriving. And, worst of all, she was slowly changing as a person – losing some of her joy, losing her voracious love of reading, losing her enthusiastic spirit.

Homeschooling brought all that back. It was right for our family, but we are not the homeschool recruiting team. By all means, do what’s best for your kid.

And, please, if I wanted to sit around eating brownies and watching Nick Jr. I would shove my kids out the door and onto the bus faster than you could say Betty Crocker. Why would I keep my kids home if I wanted to put my feet up on the couch and eat bon-bons?

I know public school people who think Catholic schools are repression factories. I’ve heard Catholic school parents whisper that all public school kids smoke weed and cut class. We all agree that this is absurd, don’t we? Isn’t is also a mistake to paint homeschoolers with an overly broad brush?

As someone who went K-thru-8 in a New York City public school, did high school in a nun-run, all-girls Catholic school, and spent 10 years teaching and tutoring kids and adults from all backgrounds, I can assure you – there is every flavor of ice cream in every school scenario.

Now, please pass the bon-bons.

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