The more news articles I read about about incidents in public schools, The happier I become that my son is no longer attending a regular public school. Anymore it just seems like it’s the faculty against the kids. The thing that really gets me is how schools seem to think the practically own the kids. I recently read an article about some kids who were suspended from school for pictures they put on myspace. I don’t know about any one else but as a parent I would have been fuming had my childs school tried to pull this.
Granted everyone should have an education, but I really don’t think that regular school is the way to go for everyone, and as long as the system continues to go downhill, and be at war with our kids less of them are going to be happy and/or succeed at school. As a parent I never really liked the idea of sending my kids off to complete strangers for 8 hours a day, having them become lost in the in crowd of the ever increasing size of classrooms. How can one teacher manage to help each student on any kind of personal level with they have a new set of 30-40 kids every hour to deal with? How is it that some kids excel at school while others stumble the whole time and it’s always just a bit late whenever somebody takes notice and tries to do anything, at that point the child is already lost.
Having no other option for the longest time, my son did attend public school. Always it seemed like the same cycle every year; he would start the year great, then half way through his grades would collapse. My son is now a student at an online public high school. He takes his classes on the internet, a few times a week he has “Live Sessions” where the students and teachers interact through whiteboard. The rest of the time he takes his classes through the schools website. Working on assignments/projects at his own pace. If he’s really into science, he doesn’t have to just stop working because the bell rang, so he can move on the next class. He just keeps on working on it, until he’s done. He’s teachers call him (yes on the phone) and discuss his grades or a current assignment, or even just to see how he’s doing. His counselor calls on a regular basis to give encouragement and to make sure he’s happy in his classes. He can still play sports through his local school, and this school regularly organizes pizza parties, outings and school events. He will have a prom, as well as a regular graduation just like all the other students in public school.
As a parent the upsides to his attending this school for me have been, the ability pin point struggling points early on, so that we can face them together. The fact that both myself and my husband can be very involved in his learning experience. If he’s reading about economics, we can have a discussion about it, and know what he’s being taught. If he’s really into art class, we can decided well let’s take the day off today and head to a museum. He can then write up a report on the trip and that counts towards his grade. The biggest concern most people seem to have when they find out about his schooling has been “well what about His social Life” and to be honest he has a great social life. Most of his friends already attended different schools then him anyway, and if I remember correctly school isn’t supposed to be about having a social life. The last time my son attended public school, I clearly remember the handbook stating kids can not hold hands, kiss or even hug for that matter. Kenzie doesn’t have any less of a social life then any of his other friends who do attend regular school. He still goes to the mall, the movies, the skating rink and other places just like other kids. The only difference is that I know he’s actually learning something and getting an education that is sticking with him. His first semester just ended and we asked him if he wanted to stay in this school or return to regular school, without so much as a pause he quickly replied “I want to stay in this school”, and when we asked him why he said “because here it seems like the teachers actually care”.