J and I recently made the decision to take G out of public school and bring him home. We were homeschoolers once upon a time and thought that season of our lives was over. After spending a day in the life of G (I observed him at school) and seeing how different he was there, how disengaged he was during the lessons, the numerous times he missed all or part of lessons, and the time he spent traveling to and from classes and bathroom breaks our decision was easy. G needs to be at home.
We have been told things by educators that we don’t agree with. How anyone who has spent any amount of time with Sweet G could put those limits on him is beyond my understanding. I am sure they would say, “Well, they are just in denial.” The truth is that it is hard to accept the limitations and obstacles that your child has to face. Each of us have weaknesses and strengths and G is no exception. He has huge obstacles to overcome but he also has great strengths to carry him through difficult times. I see him blossoming into a determined, strong, yet sweet little boy. He sat at our “cafeteria table” (that is what he calls our school table since we put it in the kitchen) the first day we homeschooled and did the very things public educators have said he is not capable of doing. He does have problems with attention and is very easily distracted, but when asked to do things when there are no distractions he can complete them.
We are not angry with the school system and are not disappointed with his school. They did the best that they could for our child. I know that he is loved by everyone there. They were simply not equipped to meet his very specific needs. It is just the nature of how school is set up. Public education is a wonderful thing. That is, it is a wonderful thing if your child is an average functioning child. I don’t think it is the best option for children with special needs. I did for a long time because that is what I was told. But after spending the last three years doing my practicum and student teaching in public education I see that teachers are stretched beyond their limits, funds are nonexistent, the smallest need takes an act of congress to get done, the paperwork is endless, the meetings are heart wrenching, and somewhere amoung all those things a little boy was falling through the cracks.
Something is going on that limits G’s progress but nobody knows what it is. They keep trying to fix it without knowing what “it” is they are trying to fix. So, even though it may not be the most popular decision we are prepared to face the criticism that is sure to come. We have been there and done that all before. Criticism is just a part of life. No matter what you do someone is not going to like it and they are going to tell you about it.
Amidst all the whirlwind changes that have taken place in my life in the past two weeks, I feel a sense of calm. I feel as if I have come home after being gone for way too long. We are settling into our “new normal” and we are thriving. My house is clean, we have had several homecooked meals, my baby is loved and becoming more curious daily. We even made homemade applesauce this week. There really is nothing like living the life of a homeschool mom!