Sunday, September 15, 2019

Pulling the trigger

Well, we're homeschoolers now, I guess.

I submitted our "declaration of intent" form to the state and instead of walking into the school to turn in my form—Human interaction? No, thanks!—I just emailed them to the secretary and she'll get to discover them tomorrow. We'll still have to go back to get the kids' things (and return Benjamin's library book (he keeps checking out books from The Little House series, which is fine...except we have those, so why...?)).

Speaking of The Little House, I was reading to the kids from Little Town on the Prairie (look at us, logging those homeschooling hours already!) and Pa summarized my feelings quite nicely in chapter 18.

Ironically, this chapter is called "Literaries," but it was in all caps and the kerning was off so I couldn't figure out what the title was. LITE RARIES.

What's a lite rary?

Let's read to find out!

Oh. Literaries.

Neat that I struggled with that word (but in my defense the kerning was off).


On page 214 as they're talking about how to organize their literary society, Pa jumps up and says:
From what I've seen...the trouble with organizing a thing is that pretty soon folks get to paying more attention to the organization than to what they're organized for.... So I suggest, let's just go straight ahead and do what we want to do...
And that's certainly how I'm feeling about the schools here. They are so big and have to worry about so many things that they've completely lost focus of the children, at least in my opinion. They are concerned about test scores, eliminating legal risk, raising funds, and, yes—hough perhaps finally— also the children. But I'm not convinced that the children's needs are really coming first.

I didn't spend a lot of time within the American education system and I've only had children in it for eight years now (knock it off, time!) so I don't know that my experience is universal (mostly likely it's not), but I feel like I've spent the majority of my time within the system fighting the system.

And I'm tired. I'm tired of fighting.

At Eno Valley, I fought to lottery my kids into a better school.

At Easley, I fought to have Miriam be assigned to a suitable grade.

At Sierra Bonita, I fought to have a gifted and talented program available.

And here I am, fighting again. I'm fighting to get my children into the classes they need to be in. I'm fighting to allow them to walk home from school. I'm fighting over homework. I'm...sick of fighting.

Instead of fighting to get my children what they need, I can just (do my best to) give them what they need. We'll probably still make mistakes (maybe even this move is a mistake (but nothing is permanent and we can always rematriculate if we need to)) because, well, I'm a fallible person (see above for an example of my fallibility—lite raries, indeed!). But we'll do our best and hopefully we will feel more peace in our lives because of it.

I could really do with feeling at ease.

(Disclaimer: I really have no problem with the idea of public schools. I think if it works for you (or for us), then that's great! But I have been having a really hard time sending my sweet kids off knowing that every day they're having a hard day. Some hard days are expected, but if every day is hard, that's a problem. we are.)


  1. I'm happy for you. Your school sucks. Now find some homeschool groups to hang out with so YOU can get some adult interaction 😉 Oh, also most states have to let your kids into todo things like band and orchestra, so keep that in mind as well, if you are interested.

  2. New word: kearning. Although it is maybe kerning? Either way, that was totally new to me! I apparently do not have much of a vocabulary for typography words.

    1. Yup. It's kerning. That's what I get for writing at midnight again. :)

      Oh, yes. Kerning. Tracking. Pica. Point. There's a whole bunch of typography vocabulary!

  3. Literary rarities. Your blog posts are delightful, Nancy. Congratulations and best wishes on the founding of your homeschool

  4. Best wishes on homeschooling! Are Miriam and Benjamin excited about it? Hope it works well for your family! I'm sorry the school experiences have been so trying for you.

    I showed my friend (she's always lived around Atlanta, and has worked there for years; attended GSU) your other post, and she was surprised at some of the things you described. She suggested asking around and seeing if other schools in the area were like this, and that school choice was an option in her county (Henry, I think). The drawback is that you have to drive your children there. I told her you decided to home school for now, and she said to keep the school choice in mind if home schooling doesn't work out.

  5. We also homeschool. I fought a lot of things and although I don't have problem with public school either ours became a time issue. My kids can relax, do sports and music, and still learn without feeling frazzled or crazy. Good luck. The first year is the hardest and as mothers we always second guess ourselves but trust in knowing what is best for your kids.