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That anyone can provide a decent home education for their child

(227 Posts)
akaemmafrost Sun 17-Feb-13 20:06:20

If they are inclined to?

I have no choice but to HE ds, he has multiple SN and is unable to function in any of our local schools.

Every single time I tell someone I get shock hmm or a mixture of both. Nine times out of ten I am asked if I am a teacher? No, I am not.

With access to a library and Internet AIBU to believe that anyone who is inclined to do so can provide a decent Home Education for their child?

I've been thinking about this for quite a while now, why the shock, judgement and sometimes downright horror whenever I tell anyone I HE? Is it really so scary and unbelievable that I can provide this to ds without being formally trained?

It seems to provoke incredibly strong opinions, even from complete strangers, which they feel they must strenuously share with me usually. So just wondering really as I can never really ask them.

MrsBradleyJames Sun 17-Feb-13 21:17:45

As a society we are all very well institutionalised to school so it is hard to get some people to see outside the box. But in your son's case, clearly his education in school would be nil, so HE is 100 per cent better anyway, isnt it!
We are also conditioned to think that a general education is what all children need. 7 or 8 subjects at a certain level. Well there are other ways of living your life and other ways of children being educated. For many people whose children will come out with 8 good gcse's, that is great and of course no one would dislike that. But for many children who dont fit the norm, for a myriad of reasons, then a unique and tailored education facilitated by those who know and love them best - what could be better?

alistron1 Sun 17-Feb-13 21:20:11

At primary level maybe - but at secondary level no. Assuming we're talking about NT children. Also, I couldn't afford to spend 14 or so years out of the workplace being a full time home educator.

natwebb79 Sun 17-Feb-13 21:23:35

discrete - as qualified teacher of secondary children up to A-level your post both offends and astonishes me. I have taught in three different schools over the course of ten years so far and I can assure you that GCSEs can not be taught by a 'monkey with an eye patch and a hand tied behind its back' and that I do not spend my days standing in front of rude insolent teenage yobbos with no respect for me. I happen to be lucky enough to spend my days teaching a variety of wonderful students with varied personalities/quirks and we generally happen to have very nice teacher/student relationships thank you very much. I sincerely hope that your view of schools is not the one being shared with home educated children. If so then I'm not surprised some of them are scared shitless! Talk about bloody misinformed brainwashing!

natwebb79 Sun 17-Feb-13 21:28:37

Apologies for bad language. Hit a nerve! angry

Jinsei Sun 17-Feb-13 21:30:15

Hmm, I sometimes think that I could do a pretty good job with dd at home, but I don't think I could possibly give her the same rich and varied experience that she gets at school.

I think it's important for children to learn alongside others and to get input from people with different perspectives. I couldn't give her that at home. I suppose you could achieve this as a HEer by clubbing together with other HEers, but then it kind of becomes something other than HE in my view.

porridgewithalmondmilk Sun 17-Feb-13 21:38:17

I guess it is something I find very difficult to understand. The problem (for me) is that it really pins a parent down to - well, not working for up to fourteen/fifteen years. And that seems to make the whole point of education a bit redundant in a way, if you're not actually going to DO anything with that education. I don't know, though ...

Haberdashery Sun 17-Feb-13 21:41:12

I'm sure I could deal pretty well with anything up to GCSE level. I would struggle with A levels that I don't have direct experience of at that level. But that wouldn't matter, would it? Because what I understand that home education people want to do is bring up a child capable of independent learning, not one that needs to be taught everything by someone else. I think it makes a lot of sense in some ways.

TheFallenMadonna Sun 17-Feb-13 21:44:05

I think if you are actively educating your children, you are using your own education. I don't consider my own education has home to waste because I spend my days educating other people's children!

Startail Sun 17-Feb-13 21:50:53

My DF provided excellent primary education for her DCs and lots of social contact through church and HE groups and just being incredibly chatty and open. We made friends at an extracurricular activity because she is just great fun to matter too.

She is hardworking, prepared to live very fugally on her DH small salary and very patient. She worked very hard on ensuring her DC got a good education and yes she cheated a bit her sister is a teacher abroad.

Most importantly of all when she knew when the disadvantages outweighed the advantages and happily enrolled her DS into Y7 of a local school and the younger DCs in their turn.

They are bright well rounded lovely DCs and an absolute credit to her and to HE.

Jamillalliamilli Sun 17-Feb-13 21:51:25

Natweb I don’t know if I can answer well enough for you as I do ‘just get on with it’ rather than know how to explain home ed, but I’m home edding with an SEN teen with some LD’s. He was totally written off as ‘having reached the limits of his learning abilities’ years ago. I didn’t believe them and didn't want him to either.

It isn’t about high quality tuition that assumes a person skilled in a subject pours knowledge into an unskilled student, it’s about learning how to learn and how to teach yourself anything and everything to the best of your abilities, and how to overcome or work around whatever barriers to learning you have.

These days there’s so much knowledge that’s easily accessible, if you want to learn something in depth, it’s not actually that hard to.

The nature of home ed means we don’t necessarily take exams in the same order, amount or use them as gateways the same way that schools do.

Ds now has 12 x core I/GCSE’s 11 at A* to B, 3 AS’s and is currently doing 2 more and 3 A2’s so we must be getting something right, but I think there is a big difference between me learning how my d/s learns best, what differentiation he needs, how to deepen and connect that knowledge, and help him learn whatever your subject is, and you learning how to be able to impart it in measured time slots to groups of 30 different students with different learning styles, levels of interest, etc, replaced with another group of individuals every hour or two.

Porridge it’s a myth that HE requires a parent not to work. (or that you need to be a two parent family, or educated yourself)

soverylucky Sun 17-Feb-13 22:00:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Jamillalliamilli Sun 17-Feb-13 22:04:07

As a LP night shifts, and unsocial hours, is one answer, but I suspect the dynamics would be different in a couple doing it. Self employed working from home is another.

soverylucky Sun 17-Feb-13 22:07:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Birdsgottafly Sun 17-Feb-13 22:08:03


It is the same as saying that anyone with a driving licence can teach someone how to drive.

Teaching is a skill, you may not recognise it in yourself,but you have the skills needed, not everyone does.

TheFallenMadonna Sun 17-Feb-13 22:09:03

Home education isn't teaching. As in school teaching.

ReallyTired Sun 17-Feb-13 22:15:54

There is a vast amount out on the internet like Khan Academy, BBC bitesize or Youtube that can be used for educational purposes. My son has used BBC bite size really sucessfully to make up for the inadequate teaching he had in school.

This boy was completely self taught. Look what William Kamkwamba has taught himself. However I doult that many teens school educated or otherwise are quite that self moviated.

Nowadays many chidlren are over spoonfed as schools are just obcessed with passing exams rather than true learning.

MrsBradleyJames Sun 17-Feb-13 22:17:03

I find it fascinating that people have such faith in schools and such a lack of faith in themselves and their ability to faciliate a full education for their children. A class of 30 kids with one teacher trying to meet all their needs is by far the more dicey option, to my mind, than a child at home with their education focussed and tailored to them!

TwelveLeggedWalk Sun 17-Feb-13 22:17:03

I would never see comments like that as a criticism of you, your intelligence or your education.
My DH and I are both Oxford grads, between us we've got a good spread of high level education in arts, science and humanities (languages and music are, admittedly, pretty shaky! smile) but we talked about if we could ever do it and came to the conclusion that we just wouldn't have the confidence to. We should theoretically be able, but I just feel we would always doubt if we were doing a good enough job IYSWIM.

HappyMummyOfOne Sun 17-Feb-13 22:20:30

I dont think everyone can, just like everyone is not suited to one career.

It depends on the parent and their own level of inteligence, the area they live is so as to access the social aspect etc.

If it all goes wrong, then the child has to live with the consequences.

soverylucky Sun 17-Feb-13 22:21:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JenaiMorris Sun 17-Feb-13 22:22:30

Not all parents are up to HE, nor are all children. Just as not all children do well at all schools.

Crazy's scenario is a familiar one - doing that day in, day out wouldn't be good for anyone in this household.

Jamillalliamilli Sun 17-Feb-13 22:29:13

Soverylucky I hope my post recognises the enormity of what a subject teacher does, even if it's critical of the appraisal of my son, which wasn’t a teacher, frighteningly it was far higher up the education chain.

If it all goes wrong, then the child has to live with the consequences. Exactly the same as with school.

larks35 Sun 17-Feb-13 22:31:19

In answer to the OP, no I know that I couldn't HE my children as I work full-time educating other people's. Even if I didn't have to do this I would still want my children to have the benefit of school life.

I work as a seconary school teacher and although my students learn a lot from me, they also learn from each other - the questions other students ask that they hadn't thought of or had been too unsure of themselves to ask, the answers others give that may not be totally correct but open up another avenue to explore, the peer-assessment where they look at each others' work and 'mark' it within a given criteria. These (and others I haven't thought of at this moment) are all very valuable teaching aids and couldn't be replicated in a home environment.

Added to this, I do believe the social aspect of a school environment is an important part of a child's development and while I fully understand that some (myself included) suffer in this part of school life, I wouldn't want to take this away from my children.

ReallyTired Sun 17-Feb-13 22:31:52

"It depends on the parent and their own level of inteligence, the area they live is so as to access the social aspect etc."

Actually I think a lot depends on the CHILD!! Life is what you make of it whether you are school educated or home educated.

"If it all goes wrong, then the child has to live with the consequences."

My son's school is having local authority intervention because the teaching has been deemed inadequate in keystage 2. As a parent I had no idea that my son and his class had not made the progress he should have done. My fear is that many of the chidlren may well end up in a poorer set at secondary school than if they had attended a good primary.

Jinsei Sun 17-Feb-13 22:37:24

I find it fascinating that people have such faith in schools and such a lack of faith in themselves and their ability to faciliate a full education for their children.

But perhaps that faith is based on observation of what actually goes on in schools? If you'd have asked me four years ago whether I could facilitate a good quality, rounded education for my dd at home, I'd have answered "yes" in a heartbeat. I wouldn't have doubted my ability at all. But having seen what the school has actually done for dd, and the breadth and richness of the education that they have provided, I realise now that I couldn't have given all that to dd after all.

It's not about a lack of confidence in my own ability - I know I'd have done a pretty good job - but rather an acknowledgement of the reality. I simply don't have the facilities, the opportunities or the range of expertise that the school is able to offer.

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