All that we have heard on every social media outlet as of late is a constant debate about bathrooms. Let me be more specific. All we have heard about is the debate over whether transgender people should be able to use the restroom they identify themselves as. It has been a bloodbath and I have no intention of saying where I stand on the issue. It’s not that I don’t have a position. I have a very specific opinion on it. However, I don’t think it is an opinion that needs to be public. I believe that it’s the kind of conversation I can have privately with someone who will respect my views whether they agree with them or not. With this issue having the publicity it has received, I have heard MANY families say that they were going to homeschool. Do yourself a favor. Don’t homeschool because of Bathrooms.
Don’t homeschool because of Bathrooms
Before you craft your perfectly worded response please hear me out. I am not against you homeschooling. If you believe homeschooling is what is best for your child than go with it. However, I am seeing a lot of people who are afraid of transgender children using the bathroom with their child choosing to just homeschool instead. It’s not just the bathroom thing. I don’t want it to seem like I am after one issue. Any time anything negative happens in the school system I hear people say, “Guess it’s time to homeschool,” or “that’s why I am homeschooling.” This is such an unhealthy perspective of homeschooling.
This isn’t just a bathroom issue.
When it comes to homeschooling, people pull their children out of school for reasons beyond just bathrooms. In 6 years of homeschooling I have seen families pull children out because of a variety of news stories. It can be easy to get scared of new things that surface. Blog posts and news reports warn you of every potential danger to your child. Well meaning parents post long winded statuses about why you should pull your child out of the school system immediately. I have seen the damage this causes though. I have watched as moms and children who should have never homeschooled end up burnt out and overwhelmed because they chose to homeschool anyway.
Fear shouldn’t be your reason to homeschool.
These things are scary but homeschooling should not be a choice made based on fear. Instead, homeschooling should be a choice made based on what is best for your child educationally. If you are homeschooling because of fear, it may be time to re-evaluate your motives. Take an honest look at your child. Is homeschooling best for them? If these things were not happening in the school would you still choose homeschool? If the answer to that is no, it’s time to look at whether there are other educational options that may be a better fit for your child. There are many great private schools and charter schools out there if you are uncomfortable with the public school system.
Homeschooling is not a fix all.
I think it’s very important that people know homeschooling is not a fix all. Your child may not have to share a bathroom with a transgender peer, see people who use drugs, be taught about evolution, or have a friend who is a pregnant teen. Then again, they might. Your child still goes out into the world. I am a huge advocate of homeschool families teaching values to their children that matter to them. I know that we focus on more than just curriculum in our home. We focus on character. I just don’t want you to think that homeschool is a fix all. It won’t change the real world. Your child will still grow up, graduate, and be exposed to these things. If you choose to homeschool, make sure to teach them respectful ways to address these issues.
If you still choose homeschool…
Please don’t further this view of homeschooling. When you talk about why you homeschool, share the benefits educationally to your child. Don’t use every bad thing as an opportunity to point out why you homeschool. There are families who would be poor homeschoolers because that is not what they are meant to do. Hearing you talk about homeschooling as a way out may pressure them into a choice they don’t need to make. By speaking about homeschooling you are shaping the views of homeschooling for the people you talk to. What kind of view of homeschool are you giving people?
I understand that fear can be difficult to overcome. My only hope is that there aren’t families homeschooling and getting burnt out because of fear. I am not telling you to throw your child in school. I am just asking that you look at the core reasons. Ask yourself what your why is.