Two days ago, my kids brought home their test papers from the first quarter exams. I was happily browsing through them when I came upon a correction made by the teacher on my 11-year-old’s essay. My daughter wrote in her Home Economics essay:
During the first grading period, we learned how to take our bath properly.
The teacher overwrote in red ink the word “oar” for “our”. I fucking freaked out. Despite the fact that my daughter got a rating of 90% for that essay, I still felt that I needed to smash something to release the tension that was spreading from the roots of my hair to my toetips. Within minutes, I found myself again entertaining thoughts about the Department of Education’s home-study program. I freaked out a little more when I realized that I am soon to be interviewed by two multinational companies after I decided a while back to resume my legal career. How could the kids go on a home-study program if I was working outside?
After several glasses of cold water and more cold water on my face, I started to calm down. The decision about junking the interviews in favor of home-schooling my kids was not a tough one. I’d choose my kids anytime. I’ve done that before and I’d do it over and over again. The tougher decision was whether they would benefit more, or less, from such an arrangement.
The home-study program was something that my husband and I have discussed several times in the past. It was a subject that has kept recurring every time we came across problems regarding teachers’ ineptitude or schools’ brazen money-making schemes. Each discussion ended in the same way–kids needed to be with other kids. They might gain more academically but socially they will miss a lot.