Public school or Homeschool

APOLOGIES FOR THE FORMATTING

I was in public school for all of elementary, except 4th grade when I was homeschooled. I was in public school 6th and 7th, and homeschool 8th and 9th. I am going into 10th now and wondering which is better? I am kind of interested in going to public school because my brothers say I need “the high school experience” and act like they are better than me because they were public schooled (as if I chose to be homeschooled). I am part of a co-op so l am in a classroom a few days a week but idk it’s not the same. Both have pros and cons but I really don’t know.

Homeschool pros-

Flexible schedule

Lessons catered to my learning style

Easy breakdown and assessment of material

Broader class choices

Homeschool cons-

A lot of (not all) homeschool kids are very odd. A large majority act much younger than their age and cannot keep a friend because they are so family oriented I guess?

Lonely on the days I am home

No real structure in the way classes and units are put together

Costs money (???? Its not like it’s some fancy shmancy private school??)

Public school pros-

Lots of time with friends

More time in school (more time to learn and hear straight from the teacher)

More diversity (in every category)

Street smarts

Public school cons-

More exposure to toxic people

More prone to bullying

More teachers are forcing their political and other views on students (the reason my parents pulled me out of public in the first place)

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Comments: 4
  1. ted

    Your mention of teachers “forcing their views on students” seems to suggest you have specific views of your own (and/or your parents’) that you want to preserve. I see this with religious people who disagree with the secular teachings they get in public school, or with people of one political stripe where the majority of their teachers hold an opposing view.

    School is supposed to challenge people to question the values their parents taught them in order to promote critical thinking, which can be very threatening to parents. I have seen teachers cross the line between promoting critical thinking vs. promoting one political viewpoint over others, so I know it happens. I was a high school teacher in social-justice focused public charter schools in the San Francisco Bay Area, and I recall conservative and religious students and their families complaining about the overall liberal tone of a lot of our curriculum.

    Whatever your views are, you may want to list them out, discuss with your parents, and explore your own ability to defend your beliefs with evidence. Sometimes holding an unpopular view can lead you to deepen your understanding of your own ideals and justify what you believe.

    You can also have an explicit conversation with any teacher who too-forcefully promotes a certain viewpoint in their class. You may ask “does my grade depend on my agreeing with your perspective?” Any responsible teacher will give you the opportunity to defend your own ideas with facts and evidence from established sources, even if it differs from theirs.
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  2. wasabi

    I think you already identified some of the major pros and cons. You also seem to have a fair amount of self awareness.

    I don’t think there’s a right answer. Just be mindful and aware of downside risks.

    If you homeschool, make sure you create structure to meet friends you like (eg hobbies, sports, etc.)

    If you go to school, see how you can mitigate the downside like bullies, etc.

    Based on your attitude now, I think you’ll be fine either way!

  3. happy

    Homeschooling. You can learn so much more not held back by others and silly waste of times that take place there.

  4. Goose

    The only thing I think that you really miss out on by doing homeschooling is stuff that you can do by joining clubs. The stuff you miss out in public school can be done by doing online research. At the end of the day, there is no right answer as others have stated.

    If you were a student who would be in my class, you would miss group projects and discussions that can expand your learning and perspective. There are certain things that we only teach one perspective on (Hitler=bad), and others that we give multiple perspectives (politics). Debates and discussions help with this. This can be replaced by making sure you are diversifying the type of sources you look at or joining a local debate/public speaking club. While joining a social club with an end goal or project can be supportive in imitating the group aspect.

    However, being in my class, you would miss out on being able to explore your own interests through the lens of the class you are in (thing math through video games) with lessons designed just for you. This can be replaced by you researching what you are interested in, talking to people online (safely), joining a club, or getting a tutor.

    To be upfront, I am generally for in-class learning over homeschooling, but that is purely because of the parents I know that home school rather than if it is a good idea. The one thing you haven’t mentioned that you may want to look into (with your parents), is if homeschooling in your area results in a disadvantage when applying to post-secondary. This can depend on where you live and the type of program you are in.

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