With everyone posting back to school posts. And all the companies on television with their back to school ads, I just wanted to take a minute to remind everyone that public school is NOT mandatory. Yeah, let that soak in for a minute, empowering isn't it. And in place of public school you are not REQUIRED to send your child/ren to private school either. There is another option, HOMESCHOOLING!
A wonderful option worth considering. Not saying it is the right choice for everyone but you should know your options. It is legal everywhere in the USA. Each state has its own regulations, some requirements are greater in some states, but it is legal, doable and I know families homeschooling all across this country.
Speaking only for North Carolina, as that is where I homeschooled my children (they are both beyond compulsory attendance age now), there are over 67,000 families homeschool across this great state. YES that is the number of FAMILIES! It is estimated that there are over 118,000 students. How awesome is that. There are homeschooling support groups in all counties, there are more opportunities than you can imagine, including proms, athletics, events, and many many activities. Homeschooling is not difficult. For more information on homeschooling in North Carolina Specifically you can go to the Division of Non Public Education web site. They list the regulations/requirements as well as some suggestions/recommendations.
For other states, just google your state and homeschooling and I am sure a whole range of links will show up. Or search for a local homeschool group. Networking with other homeschooling families is a great way to see what homeschooling looks like, and I can tell you, it looks different for every family homeschooling.
Another detail I want to mention that is NC specific, is the compulsory attendance age. Here in North Carolina it is 7-16. So if your child is not yet seven they do not have to be enrolled in school anywhere at all. They are not required to be attending any sort of school until the age of seven. So when considering pre school and pre-pre school, think about that. Are you ready for school, is your child ready for school, any sort of school?
I encourage everyone to think about all the options. I feel we should all put as much time, thought, research and discussion into how/when/where we would like to educate our child/ren as we do in buying a car or house. I think we all deserve at least that.