I have to say that I really enjoy summer break. I can focus undivided attention on my work and hobbies without any guilt over Emma’s schooling. It is a real challenge to both work full-time at home, keep a house, and homeschool my daughter. Removing that one aspect gives me a bit more breathing room that I appreciate greatly.
It’s times like these when the thought goes through my mind.
What if I didn’t homeschool these last four years? What if I sent Emma to public high school and had all day home alone to myself?
And then I even start to rationalize it.
She has friends at church in public school. She would learn to adapt, probably even enjoy it. This would help her transition to college.
Insert sound of screeching brakes. No. Way. I am not going to hang it all up this close to the end.
Reasons Why I Am Going to Keep Homeschooling Through High School
I have only four more years with this child, this young woman. I have invested so many years already. Why would I hang up homeschooling now that I’m so close to the finish line?
To be honest, these years are the easier ones for homeschooling. Sure, the stakes are a bit higher. I have to invest more in record keeping and keep abreast of requirements, but as far as the teaching, this only gets easier and easier.
Emma is already a very independent learner. She can do the majority of her work on her own. We meet to discuss and do some joint work each day. But that never takes more than 90 minutes, often less than an hour. What makes me think I can’t invest 90 minutes a day and another 15-30 minutes a week on planning and record keeping? When I weigh the time investment, it’s not that huge.
I worked so hard to teach Emma to be an independent learner. I should reap the rewards for this stage of homeschooling, not give up.
Freedom and Time
If Emma went to school, I would have to give up a lot of flexibility in our lifestyle. We would be bound by the school calendar and schedule. I don’t think it would end up a fair trade at all. I would probably spend more time driving to and from school, pestering Emma to wake up, and helping her with silly busy work than I currently spend on homeschool planning and joint learning.
Boundaries and Safety
I have provided Emma with an environment where she can develop at her own rate and hone her special gifts. Why at such pivotal years would I turn all of that over to an institution that does not have her best interests at heart?
Making friends is great. I want her to have a vibrant social life. But the halls of high school do not provide the boundaries and safety net that she needs for learning how to interact with peers. To be honest, I have concerns about our church youth group. Let’s just say that Emma and I have a great line of communication. I am often horrified by the stories I hear. I can only imagine that school is exponentially worse in terms of petting, sexual activity, vulgar language, and drug talk.
High school is not like real life. (Thank goodness.) It’s a myth that high school prepares our teens for adulthood. It does not. It destroys their sensitivity and innocence. It violates their creative freedom and sucks their natural zest for learning.
Things can change, of course, but right now Emma is considering college majors such as Islamic studies, Arabic, or Biblical counseling. There is no way a public school (in our area, anyway) can provide her with even a smidgen of exposure to those topics.
But at home, we can tailor her curriculum choices so she gets credits for classes such as psychology, Arabic, and Middle Eastern history and culture. Imagine how great that is going to look on a transcript when she applies for college!
Resolved to Continue the Course
I have just four more years of this journey. And then I will not be homeschooling any more, ever again.
I can do anything for four years when I have a clear end point. I write this post to encourage myself and to encourage you. Don’t hangup homeschooling when you reach high school. We can do this!
Want To Learn About High School Transcripts?
Lee Binz, The Home Scholar, gave a free webinar for my readers on June 25, 2013. This webinar was recorded, and you can watch it free, on Lee’s site.
If you are anywhere close to high school years or if you are even remotely concerned about high school, I urge you to watch it. Lee’s seminars have gone a long way to reassure me that I can keep homeschooling through high school. I promise you will end her session feeling empowered not defeated or anxious.