Tell someone that you homeschool and you might get away with it. Tell them why, and you could be in for the fight of your life! Why is homeschooling so controversial? I discovered that it isn’t what I say, it’s what they hear!
I say: I homeschool my children.
They hear: My kids are too good for normal school.
I say: We want the Bible included in our kids’ daily lessons.
They hear: Non-homeschoolers are heathens!
I say: I can provide a better education at home.
They hear: Your kids are dumb!
I say: I’m concerned about school violence.
They hear: You threw your kids to the wolves!
I say: I’m worried about teen pregnancy.
They hear: Your daughter is a slut!
I say: I’m concerned about drug use.
They hear: Your son’s a doper.
I say: I think its a parent’s duty to raise their own children.
They hear: You’ve abandoned your kids.
Ultimately, I say: There are lots of great reasons to homeschool.
Ultimately, they hear: YOU ARE A BAD PARENT!!!
The miscommunication is easy because parents are so sensitive about their children. If we are not careful, this hostility can define our “homeschooling testimonials.”
As a result, some of us cower. We say things like, “homeschooling works for us,” as if we it is merely a preference – like picking a flavor of ice cream. This isn’t really true. Most of us feel that homeschooling is for everyone. Many feel it is the only Biblical option! On the other hand, some of us mount personal crusades, flaunting our children’s achievements and beating people with Bible verses!
At different times, for different reasons, I have done both – avoiding and condemning. Neither were very effective, and we must be very effective in these trying times.
The tide is turning in America. Yes, more people are choosing to homeschool, but just as many are calling to criminalize it (I think it is clear were this administration stands)! If our way of life is going to continue, we’ll have to become better homeschooling advocates.
We must have conviction, but not condemn. We must share, but not crusade. We must win friends, not arguments! We must care, before we make our case!
If we believe that most parents want what is best for their children, then we have to believe that most are pro-homeschooling too – even if they don’t know it yet. If we can condemn the schools, without condemning the parents and teachers who don’t know any better, I think we’ll see a lot more people opening up to homeschooling.
Always reassure other parents that you know how dearly they love their children, and that’s why you think that they should homeschool!