12 Reasons We Don’t Have Our Children in Public School {Part 1}

by GfG on October 15, 2013 · 5 comments

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I know this will step on some toes, but that is not my goal, nor my reason for sharing.  People have asked and I have shied away from sharing, which I don’t think is honest of me.  While these are Paul and I’s reasons, they may or may not apply to you.  Know this from the get go: they are our reasons.

{ETA: We have friends, dear friends, who believe much differently on this issue.  We have served in and loved greatly in a church for eighteen years where we were the minority in this opinion.  Just as other issues, Christians can agree to disagree in love.}

12 Reasons We Don’t Have Our Children in Public School:

1)  The public school system is not the real world.

We want our children to be able to function, minister, and thrive in the real world and public school is not it. We want them to do it now, not just when they are adults.The only time that a person must be with groups (small and large) of people only their own age every day, all day is public school.

We want our children to interact with all ages, to find friends in ages outside of their “grade”, to have the time to minister to others, to work with children of different ages on a regular basis, to be able to bring their worldview to instruction and teaching discussions, to be able to break from a negative group via alone work time or other avenues, to share the Gospel,  …. and more.

Just because something is the reality for the majority of people, doesn’t mean it is the real world.

2) Our children are not “lights” or “salt” until they are actually lit and actually salty.

We do not believe that a baby is a Christian, but that instead each person must come to Christ on their own, receiving justifying grace.  Christians are called “lights” and “salt” in the Bible.  Those callings are beautiful responsibilities for those in Christ.

We do not think that young children are truly Christians.  We think this requires a knowledge and understanding of sin, our need for a Savior, and the stunning gift of grace through the perfect atonement.  We think that children are covered by common grace until their minds can grasp these truths.

So, we don’t think that young children can be “lights” or “salt” because they are not capable of that.  Yes, they are capable of morality, but that is a very different thing.  Very.  Confusing the two leads to legalism, a false sense of salvation, or confusion between Christianity and morality (since Muslims can be moral, but not Christian).  None are what we want for our children.  Knowing Bible stories is not the same thing as being a light or being salt, just as being kind and friendly isn’t.

Yes, we want them to be “light” and “salt” and we pray that they will be someday (which then is also affected by #10 on our list), but until then, they simply can not be that.

3) Young children are unable to logically differentiate.

Young children are in what classical educators call the grammar stage.  This means that they can not distinguish between truth and opinion for quite awhile, they can not defend truth, and they are not yet able to logically differentiate between information that is logical, impossible, or ill supported.  This is an important truth for young children and their parents.  It means that we guide and expose them to truths, opinions, and situations as they can grasp them.

This applies to all kinds of information presented.  It is one reason we want to guard their minds.  We want our children to establish a firm foundation of a Christian worldview before they are inundated with false teaching.  Young elementary school children that are taught different views at home and school cannot differentiate between truth and false teaching; they have stumbling blocks placed before them in developing a biblical worldview (a hint to another item on the list, coming in Part 2).

4) We want our children to learn at their own pace for each subject area.

Public school does not and can not allow every child to learn at their own pace for each subject.  Children are passed to the next grade based on their ability across the board, so they can’t be two grades below in math and four grades above in reading or even four grades ahead in everything and still do well, enjoy, and mesh nicely with public school.

This changes quite a bit once a child hits junior high, but not until then can a child learn more at his own pace instead of the entire class’s, but instead learns at a bit more tailored pace of that class within the class.  Even in junior high and high school a child can not be allowed to learn at their own pace.  It’s just not how the system is run.

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5) I have the mental abilities to homeschool.  I am not a genius.  I am not even the smartest woman I know.  I was not and have never been near the top of my class.  I can read and I can write, though.  I can research and make decisions about curriculum.  I can read a scripted (or not) curriculum book to my children and work with them on subjects.

All of this does NOT require a degree in anything, especially not a degree in education.  Yet, there are women who are not blessed in this way.  Homeschooling would be next to impossible for them.  It could be done, with outside help and support, but it would be seriously challenging.

That is not me, though, so it takes public school off the table.

6) We do not have to use public school.  Paul provides for our family, so I don’t have to work outside the home.  That means that I can spend my day home educating our children.  We also live in a country in which this is a freedom and a state that does not restrict homeschoolers.

When we looked for a new job, homeschooling freedom was at the top of the list.  We would not take a job in a state that seriously hinders homeschooling.  I pray that our country never go the way of ditching parental rights for governmental control in this area.  I fear it will.

Until then… public school is not my only option.

Ok…. there are 6 more reasons… coming tomorrow (so you can read each of these posts in one sitting without your  behind falling asleep.         😉       )

These reasons have become more and more solid in our minds the longer we homeschool.  As we watch our children become young adults.  As we watch our country make plans for a common core of curriculum.

{If you want to read an excellent article/post by a tattoo sporting radio guy on the subject, just so you know it’s not just this conservative family that thinks like this… check this fabulous one out!}

Did you learn anything new about us in these reasons?

Part 2 is here

{Be nice in any comment you post, or it won’t be published and probably won’t fully be read by the moderator… me.}

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