“We’ve always considered public school ed our kids receive as supplemental to the ed we provide at home ….”

14 Sep

The full quote is here:

“We’ve always considered public school ed our kids receive as supplemental to the ed we provide at home so we don’t go crazy about it.”

And my reply, from the comments, is this:

So many people say this. My response?

IF YOUR CHILD ISN’T IN SCHOOL FOR AN EDUCATION, WHY IS HE THERE AT ALL?

Do we really need warehouses for children so badly that we’re willing to give away 6-7 hours of a child’s life, five days a week, in order to maintain the appearance of conformity? And this is quite aside from the homework!

Here’s a radical idea: Keep your kids out of institutional school. They will have more time with their families, more time for playing with friends, more time for independent leisure activities, more time for organized activities, and more time for learning. They will be more mature and responsible and, because they will not look near-exclusively to their peers to model behavior, will be better at getting along with people from a variety of backgrounds instead of just their own age group and clique within their neighborhood school.

Can’t work from home or give up a salary and homeschool your kids? Then see if you can form a part-day daycare. If you make enough money, a tutor or governess is also an option. Older kids can stay home by themselves for at least part of the day.

There is no reason that a child can’t cover all of “normal” Kindergarten in two hours a day, first grade in three, and second to fourth in four. Why restrict yourself to the pitiful standards of institutional schools, though? In five and a half hours a day, my seven-year-old does the usual core courses (reading at the 7th grade level, plus spelling, grammar, handwriting, and composition; algebra 1; science and real history, not social studies) and also has time for art, violin, piano, Bible, and three languages. And competitive gymnastics outside of school. He’s a smart kid, but there are plenty of other smart kids out there who could/should be doing as well or better but can’t.

Every child should have the opportunity to succeed. I’ve seen schools try to quash that in children from the moderately mentally retarded to the profoundly gifted. It doesn’t matter where you are–the learning should meet you where you need it. Instead, schools try to make the child fit the mold. That’ll never get the results that individual education gets.

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