I have been intending to write this post for a couple weeks, but until last night, didn't have the words to express what I needed to. So without further ado, we are going to become a homeschool family, starting with J and Kindergarten in the fall.
And now I want to explain our decision.
We chose this path because it is the right one for our family for right now. Knowing who our son is and what he requires, knowing the kind of parents we are and the family that we have, knowing the craziness of Eric's job. It is a good decision for us to make now.
However, as I read more and more, I get the sense that many people assume things about me just because of this decision. So let me also add that:
--I love school and teachers. I have fantastic memories of school and teachers and learning in general. I love the school my kids are at for preschool and would love to send them there for all of elementary. But that is not to be due to school consolidation.
--I believe in the power of Christian education. I was raised in Christian schools and credit them for much of the growth and knowledge that I have. God used those places to reach me during very formative times in my life. He used them to protect me.
--I am not retreating from the culture that we live in. Sure, I may be keeping them out of a school setting for now, but I live near the core city. I want to allow them the opportunity and chance to engage the culture, to transform it--not run away and be afraid of it.
But I also need to add that this is, in some sense a rebellion. We believe strongly in a Christian education especially in the early educational years. As we considered the options around us (simply, the ones in our neighborhood--because for now, we want to be centered near where we live), we found that what we wanted was not reasonably priced. Considering that in the next three to four years we will have three kids in full time school, the price tag (at today's rates) is about $15,000 to $18,000. This is not a responsible amount of money for our family, even if we are eligible for assistance. Faced with the thought of me having to return to the work force or choosing to teach our kids, we are choosing to teach them. For now. As we look into the future, we like what we see with our City schools and are thinking ahead for those in Middle and High School.
I am interested in dialoging on this. I would never suggest that this decision is for everyone. Even I question my sanity, based on the day. But I am excited. I truly feel a sense of purpose and God's call in this.
And, I must admit, that this has probably been one of the most unexpected parts of my life so far. I can't wait to see how it all turns out!