An Open Letter to Public School Teachers (from a Homeschool Mom)

Dear Public School Teacher,

You are one of my heroes.  You have been assigned a nearly impossible task, and you continue to work toward it day after day, year after year.  I sometimes get frustrated with my two students, so I can only imagine what you face with a room full of 30 students.  (Well, actually I do know what it’s like to face a room full of 30+ students, but mine have been adults who usually acted like adults.  This is all the more reason why I admire you.)

I have the privilege of tailoring my children’s education to their unique needs without the pressures of a demanding testing schedule, and yet, I’m still frequently overwhelmed.  My students have parents who are of one mind with the teacher , and yet it’s still not an easy task to educate a child.  No one yells at me when one of my students fails a test, but I still know the second-guessing that often comes after a student doesn’t perform well.

I’m afraid you may think that my decision to homeschool is an indication of what I think about you.  Please let me assure you that’s not the case.  While it’s true that I disagree with some of what public education represents and things in the curriculum that are out of your control, that is not directed at you personally.  In general, I do not think that teachers are the problem.  Sure, there are always bad apples here and there, but I believe that most of you are caring, hard-working, and dedicated to your students.  That is certainly true of the teachers in my life right now.

There are incredibly gifted public school teachers.  I know because I had the privilege of being taught by many of them as I was growing up.  I’m not homeschooling because I had a terrible public school experience.  On the contrary, I had a great experience and never in a million years expected to homeschool.

I’m homeschooling my children for the same reason (I hope) that you are teaching in your classroom: it’s what I have been called to do.  Instead of judging one another and questioning each other’s motives, let’s encourage each other.

Brand new teacher with your shiny new education degree: go out there and change the world!

Practiced teacher who has found her groove and is loving it: enjoy that feeling of being right where God wants you to be!

Seasoned teacher whose file folders and smile lines are equally deep and full of memories: love on those children, and pass on that wisdom!

And fellow homeschool Moms who may be reading: let’s not take for granted the awesome privilege of being able to teach our children.  Let’s pour our hearts and souls into these students of ours, and let’s support our friends and family who are doing the same thing in their public school classrooms.

At the end of the day, we share the same goals: preparing children for whatever future God has in store for them, raising up Kingdom Builders, and showing children the love of Christ.  May we all have a wonderful school year.

Laura