Broaching the subject...(10 Posts)
How did you come to the idea of HE? And how did you bring it up with your OH, if it was your idea in the first place!?
Me, I just didn't like the idea of my older dd doing formal education for full days at the age of four. I thought she would be happier and learn more by continuing to play and do whatever interested her. So initially it was more about delaying school for a few years until she reached an age when I felt school would be appropriate. (I later changed my mind; now she is 13 and we still haven't found any need for school.)
At the time I didn't really see this as "home education" - I just didn't want to send her to school yet. However, she was a very sociable child who liked older children and there were none around during the daytime so we had to go to home ed groups to find them! And then we got sucked into the whole home education thing, and I'm very glad we did.
My dh was rather conservative so I didn't expect him to go for the idea. I first brought it up by mentioning that I'd met some children who didn't go to school and it seemed to be working well for them. We also had a number of discussions about our own school experiences and we were in agreement about having felt too young to start school at the age of five ourselves, and having found the whole environment overwhelming.
We still didn't see eye-to-eye for a very long time. The turning point came one day when, in another context, my dh spoke about his happiest childhood memories and also his unhappiest childhood memories. I pointed out that all of his happiest memories had been outside of school and all but one of his traumatic experiences had happened at school!!
For us it was unmet SN and the neglect that ds was experiencing in school. He was being destroyed. The decision to HE was a no-brainer, really.
Thanks for your replies. That's awful, Streakybacon
The first time I realised it might be a viable option was on MN. Then I met a woman that was HE at a breastfeeding group coffee morning and got chatting. I tentatively mentioned meeting her to DH and he seemed interested so we just had a chat about it and decided to give it a go.
DH is from Canada where they start formal education slightly later and was horrified by the idea of 5 year olds getting homework so that helped a lot.
I had a friend at home (in the US) who had been home educated. My SiL here (in the UK) does it with her brood. When SmallBoy was a mere few weeks old MrScout said something about home educating BabyScout (as he was then). I think, at first, it was a bit tongue-in-cheek but I told him I wanted to research and see if I could meet some other people (besides SiL who HE's for completely different reasons than we would and is very closed off and not very open to conversation and questions). I met lots of people, including some only children (who were boys) who were very outgoing, intelligent, had lots of friends/active life and thought "yes, we can do this" (as SmallBoy will be an only child). It's gone on from there.
He's three now and not in nursery and I'm very happy about our decision. We (MrScout & I) know that as a family we will re-assess the situation every year and make a decision based on what's best for SmallBoy and our family. We're not anti-school it's just that we're pro-home education.
I had a friend from antenatal group who always knew she wanted to HEd even before her 1st child was born so I always knew it was an option and when my DD1 started school and she and I hated it I started reading more and more about HE and would drop little bits of info into conversations with DH. This went on for 3+ years and it got to the point where I was sure I wanted to HE and even tho DH really wasn't sure about it (mainly worried that they wouldn't do well), he eventually agreed to give it a go, phew. I asked the children if they wanted to leave school and all 3 DDs came out. It has been fabulous so far and H is much more convinced about the positives and we can have much better conversations about it now.
(we are now starting 'discussions' about what to do for secondary level....!)
Our children were all very unhappy in school, and the eldest expressed that he simply didn't want to live any more, as the champagne corks pooped at midnight one New Year, when everyone else was celebrating and cheering.
I spent the next couple of weeks frantically working on alternatives-working out if I returned to full time night duty, could we afford to send the three of them to a Steiner School, and working how much capital we could release if we remortgaged the house.
Then one Friday he came home after the latest crisis, when the teacher had thrown him out of class for asking for left handed scissors.
I went on the web and found the Education Otherwise website.
I screamed at DH "I've found the answer! They don't have to go! Home Education is legal in the UK!"
The deregistration letters for all three of them went in the very next school day.....
For us it was quite funny really as dd was quite settled and very happy at school. So when I first suggested the idea to dh his reaction was "Have you lost your marbles" or "sense of mind" ? I had read threads on here but before this hadn't considered H.ed because "weren't they the weird hippy families, who ended up with odd unsocialised kids"?
So anyway, undeterred I read more and found online groups supporting H.ed and when I had a fair amount of info i.e not the stereotypical garbage and ill informed rubbish that exists, I went back to dh.
We discussed it for about 2 months, decided it was a good idea and then discussed it with dd. As she was happy we didn't want to rush into anything so we let her ask questions etc until she was ready to make the decision. Which we felt had to come from her.
She left school in July and so far its ok, we have good and bad days. On the whole she is achieving what she set out to gain from H.ed so I guess for now its successful. We don't know what she will decide at 11+, either specialist school or H.ed its up to her really. We know she doesn't want to go to a local secondary school though.
I think for dc who are unhappy the choice is alot easier to make though as they have to get out of a bad environment, quickly
I've always known home educated kids. I think I lived in an area with a high home ed population in the 80s and 90s. So it seemed a very normal option when we had kids.
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