THE DECISION TO HOMESCHOOL
It wasn’t an easy to decision to make until recently…I’ll get to that in a moment. But ever since we arrived in Savannah, I’ve had nothing but issues with the public school system and my daughters services through her IEP. Read more about that and get some helpful tips with this article I wrote shortly after arriving. They began by drastically changing Jacqueline’s IEP including taking away services she’d been receiving since she was a year old or severely shortening duration and frequency of other services. This required me to go to her doctor and have him do a referral for private therapies.
MENTALLY AND PHYSICALLY EXAUSTED
Between taking the two kids to school, her therapy schedule, church, and any extracurricular activities the kids had, I was in the car hours each day. On Mondays, I was generally in the car no less than 4 hours just driving around Savannah getting them to appointments. And it wasn’t a normal school pick up twice a week. It was me going in and having to sign them out early (disrupting Joseph’s school day so I wouldn’t have to turn around and pick him up or be late picking him up) to get Jac to therapy on time. I played around with the idea of homeschooling. I tried to weight the advantages and disadvantages, but doing something new can be scary. This was a little daunting to me since Jac has special needs, and I’m not certified or even trained as a special educator…or teacher for that matter. But something HAD to change!
About a month ago a friend of mine invited me to a local homeschooling co-op meeting. I figured it could only help me make a decision…and that’s exactly what happened. The woman who runs it has a Masters in Special Education!! Not only that, there was a woman and her daughter there that day. There didn’t seem to be a reason as to why they were there because the girl was now in college…but then they shared her story. She too had some special needs from chemo that she had received as a baby. It affected her brain development, and as a result learns 7 times slower than the average person. There was no doubt at that point that God sent them there to tell me that to give me a peace about homeschooling Jac. This girl had been a student at the co-op and has now gone on to college!! This brings tears to my eyes still. I was waiting for God to show me that it was okay, and that’s how he showed me. Pretty amazing if you ask me, but His hand has been in Jacqueline’s journey from the very beginning. (Stopping to really think about it as I write this makes me tear up more.) He’s been so good to us!
So that’s it! This month we begin our homeschooling journey. I already feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders. I understand that people think homeschooling is weird and parents just “need a break”, but I think this is what’s going to work for our family and lead to less stress in many ways. I’m sure I’ll be stressed in others, but my children’s education and well being are #1. Would I like some alone time? Of course I would, but I’d rather not have the insane schedule we’ve had for the last year and a half.
There’s also the issue that since January 2017 Jac has attended three schools and had five different teachers. There’s been no consistency which is truly paramount when working with children who have special needs. Problem solved!
ADVENTURES IN HOMESCHOOLING
So I’m sure you’ll all be interested to hear all about our homeschooling journey, and you know me, I’ll be here to share the good, the bad, and the ugly. That’s life, right? I’ll be keeping up with my workouts, business and blog, and here to help and encourage other mamas as they figure out what’s right for them and their families.
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