Question: How logical is it to homeschool my ten-year-old son who has been anxious about school from the time he started kindergarten, and to leave my eight-year-old son in school (he loves school and is at the top of the class)? It seems logical, but is it? Elizabeth B.
Whether it is logically consistent depends on what you consider to be the principles and truths from which you must draw your conclusions.
Why do you homeschool your ten-year-old? If it is only because he is anxiously nervous about a classroom situation and you would spare him this anxiety, then, if your eight-year-old is not anxiously nervous about the situation, it would not be inconsistent to put him in a classroom situation.
However, we suggest that you are looking at the question too narrowly. There may be many other reasons A. for staying out of the government school, B. for avoiding the classroom experience even in a non-government school, and C. for choosing homeschooling. Consider briefly the following reasons:
A. Possible reasons for avoiding the government school experience:
1. The authority for the education of children is given to their parents. The government has no original jurisdiction in the matter. The more we participate in activities outside of God’s order, the more we empower them while we weaken God’s cause.
2. The God-less curriculum inculcates the habit of ignoring God in everything all day long.
3. The academic content often omits much important factual information while teaching speculations, distortions, and falsehoods as facts.
4. Children are expected to absorb humanist, socialist, naturalist, and behaviorist philosophies in order to do well in class and be accepted by the students and teachers.
5. Children are continually exposed and subjected to an environment of profane, obscene, and worthless language and habits.
6. Children are subjected to psychological testing, labeling, and treatment, often without parental knowledge or over parental objections.
7. Children are threatened by physical abuse and violence at alarming levels even with the daylong presence of law enforcement officials in the school.
8. The quality of instruction can be low.
B. Possible reasons for avoiding the classroom school experience:
1. It can create bonds which easily cross and oppose the proper bonds of authority and affection.
2. It can create an atmosphere of rivalry, not challenge.
3. It draws order and commitment away from the family.
4. The method is inefficient – lowest common denominator for children at various levels.
5. It creates peer partitioning and peer dependence.
6. It wastes much time and many resources.
7. It uses a manufactory and warehousing model instead of a tutorial model.
8. It creates an artificial environment separated from the habits of life which need to be modeled.
C. Possible reasons for choosing the homeschool experience:
1. The parents may directly exercise their original jurisdiction in education.
2. The daily parental model is best fitted for establishing Biblical values.
3. The daily family model is best fitted for positive socialization.
4. The one-on-one model of education is best fitted for academic excellence.
5. Children grow up in the greenhouse environment under the persons most interested in their development and protection – their parents.
6. Children are able every day to move about and learn in the real-life culture.
7. The homeschool experience is best fitted for the spiritual development of parents.
In our opinion, principles, truths, and practical issues (such as these we’ve listed above) far outweigh the question of whether a child does or does not happen to adapt well to a classroom situation.