This is the time of year when parents customarily make their education choices for the upcoming fall semester for their children. It is also the time that those considering homeschooling begin to get “concerned” about the challenges they will face if they pursue home education. Here are some of the concerns/excuses that I hear time and again, along with my answers.
Q. If I take my children out of school or don’t enroll them in a public school, I may be contacted by my school district? What do I do then?
A. Join Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) and receive the benefits of expert legal advice and referrals to local homeschool leaders.
Q. With so many curriculum choices, how do I know what will be best for my children without having to spend a lot of money to find out?
A. Connect with the Christian Home Education Association (CHEA)* for your state and register for a convention in your area. Spend time in the exhibit hall and get some hands-on experience with hundreds of choices before you purchase. There are also excellent convention workshops for you to attend.
Q. I’m not sure I’m capable of teaching my children?
A. Get copies of my two books Lessons Learned from Years of Homeschooling and The Homeschool Life. They will give you perspective on what it takes to be a homeschooling parent. You can also consider a mentoring program to help assist you with “on the job” training.
Q. But what about the socialization? Won’t we be isolated from other people if we homeschool?
A. A quick internet search should put you in touch with many dedicated support groups in your area. There are also many homeschool forums where parents exchange information and ideas, not to mention many opportunities for extra curricula activities.
Q. I know homeschooling is a great choice, but I’m scared. Haven’t you read about families, in our country and internationally, who face harassment and sanctions because they teach their own children at home?
A. Surely you do not think we are the first group of believers ever to face oppression and opposition? Ask God to help you in your unbelief and trust in His provision. And, consider this passage from the Epistle to the Hebrews:
By faith Moses, when he was born, was hid three months of his parents, because they saw he was a proper child; and they were not afraid of the king's commandment.
By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter;
Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;
Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward.
By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.
Through faith he kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn should touch them.
By faith they passed through the Red sea as by dry land: which the Egyptians assaying to do were drowned.
- Andrea G. Schwartz
Andrea Schwartz is Chalcedon’s family and Christian education advocate, and the author of eight books including: A House for God: Building a Kingdom-Driven Family, The Biblical Trustee Family: Understanding God’s Purpose for Your Household, Empowered: Developing Strong Women for Kingdom Service, Woman of the House: A Mother’s Role in Building a Christian Culture, and The Homeschool Life: Discovering God’s Way to Family-Based Education. She’s also the co-host of the Out of the Question podcast, and Homeschooling Helps (weekly live Facebook event). She can be reached at [email protected].