Deschooling – Do It!

**IN PROGRESS**

I don’t know about you, but I have literally had a person look me straight in the face and said, “You homeschool? Why in the world would you do that??”

Granted it was a clerk behind the deli counter at Walmart who stopped what he was doing to peer over the glass case, a freshly cut slice of provolone cheese dangling from his hand with his nose crinkled in confusion.

Not everyone is as direct and incredulous as that clerk but I’ve gotten looks from other people, strangers and family alike, that say about the same thing. And if you haven’t already had some person without a filter ask you that question, you probably will at some point in time. Or one very similar to it.

So why in the world DO people homeschool? Well, the reasons are probably as unique and wide-ranging as the homeschoolers themselves. However, I’d like to give you a few of the many reasons I’ve come across over the years.  And who knows, maybe reading some of the more common reasons spelled out in black and white will help you put words to your own personal reasons and motivations. (It also makes great ammo for when you come across that well-meaning but ill-informed friend or family member that you actually feeeeeeeeeeeel like explaining it to!)

So, whether you’re already homeschooling or you’re just thinking about it, here are some common reasons people decide to homeschool.

Covid-19

Let’s talk first about the elephant in the room: Covid-19. Many people were placed in the position of having to administer public school at home due to the COVID-19 lockdowns. Some people mistakenly thought of this as “homeschooling”. Homeschooling is very different to this in both theory and practice. Even though every state has their own legal definitions, I’m not aware of a single state where public schooling at home meets the legal definition of homeschooling.

All that being said, parents were placed in a difficult situation by having to scramble to meet the educational needs of their children with either very little help from the child’s school or too much overreach and expectation placed on them by local administrators. As parents, many of us have placed our trust in the public education system to teach our children. Many parents became aware of and displeased with how and what their children were being taught.

As difficult and unfortunate as the school closures may have been, the flip side to the lockdown coin and perhaps the one good that may have come from this is that some parents began to entertain the idea of switching to homeschooling. They began to see it as a viable option.

Some children do poorly in standard school settings because of boredom or distractions. Although standardized testing scores went down across public school districts nationwide, there were certainly some children that benefited from learning at home when they otherwise wouldn’t have been there.

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