Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Farewell Homeschooling.

I was going to write a long sad post about how hard this decision was, which it was. But instead, I'm going say that it doesn't have to be such a dreadful thing. It became apparent on the second day of the term that my health absolutely will not do another day, term, semester or year of 'homeschooling'. So a decision had to be made. Our oldest daughter 11 had been in school for about 1 year and loved it so we met with the Principal to discuss our options with Maddie 9 (year 4) and Lucy 6 (year1). They couldn't have been more helpful. They did not question, belittle, speak or treat me in a condescending way because we have been homeschooling. I told them that I did not want them to start on the first day of the year or even the first week. I always think the first day of school is vital for children normally because friendships and pecking order are established and if you are new you are just overwhelmed and no one may even know your new with class shake ups. They were new. New to the school and new to the school. We settled on the second day of the second week. They had an assembly on Monday so I didn't want to throw them into that as well. By the time the Tuesday came, news had spread that 2 girls were starting school who had never been to school before. This was BIG! My husband and I are the regular, conservative looking Mormons, no tattoos, nose rings or other hippy accessories you would expect from stereotypical homeschooling parents. Parents looked really surprised. We were the 3 ring circus I have to say. Well, I have to say as today is the first day of the holiday break, we are 1 term down and it couldn't have been more successful. It's hard work sending them to school. Never be fooled in a moment of weakness that school may be an easier option because it's not when you are hands-on parents. Homework, Notes, excursions, band practice, flute practice, choir practice, swimming carnivals, the list is endless and exhausting. It's always someone else's agenda. I miss ME running the show. The other children and teacher took my girls under their wings like fragile chickens to be taken care of because of their lack of experience in the jungle. After 6 years the Lord didn't answer my prayer for healing and my health, well, short of a miracle and I felt cheated out of this opportunity to homeschool my babies but He blessed me with a public school that bucks the trend. That has taken my children in and loved them in my absence. We had a parent-teacher interview with Maddie's teacher.
This is a woman who has taught for many years. She asked us what we wanted to talk about and we said whatever she would like to share with us about mad dies progress. She started to cry. I was really worried then! She said after all her years of teaching she has never met a child so unpolluted by the world. She has such a confidence in herself, which for Maddie is amazing and you can read here why. The teacher gave us an example of there being a real mood in the classroom with people bickering at each other and Maddie came and sat down and said." I'm so disappointed to hear all of this disagreement". The class stopped and looked at her looked at each other and got over it with the whole atmosphere of the room changing. She said it happens time and time again. The teacher was more than teary once through the whole interview.
. The purple ribbon Lucy has on her uniform was because the school even organised an Epilepsy Awareness fundraising day which was on March 26, with merchandise & free dress day in purple on Thursday. She is the only one in the school with the condition. So it is sad in one way that I can't homeschool, but a blessing for the girls in another. I can honestly say that the transition for us has been a wonderful one. I still homeschool just in a different way. We are their parents and home will always be the most important schooling my children will ever get. I received the same feedback from each one of my girl's teachers and they all say that there is something different and special about them. I know what that is and that will never change. So farewell to homeschooling. I will miss you but have loved every day of the journey and it is not over yet because parenting transcends it all.

1 comment:

Ferne-Clan said...

I have a dear friend who was home schooled until she went into the 10th grade. She is amazing.... she always had more devolution than many of the other students with her studies. Never let anyone make you feel less than you are. We all know how exceptional you are! You gave the best to your children by home schooling them. Nice job!