10.28.2010

Catholic Schools

I know others have touched on this topic and I have a few thoughts to share.  Mostly, though, I am interested in collecting your thoughts.

I work in education.  You all know that.  I respect the teachers and their heavy workload.  However, I am frustrated with a system that allows those that shouldn't teach to remain working.  The system is broke in many ways, unfortunately, and I think those in it could give you many examples and would agree.  I see teachers fired only to be hired by other schools in the same district.  I just scratch my head.  I think the unions are more powerful than they should be.  Don't shoot me now. I could go on.

I would like my children, ideally, to go to Catholic school.  No, I do not think these are the magic solution to every problem in education.  But I do think they are better than public schools right now.  Maybe not all, but the good ones.  The ones that do it as it was intended...Maybe I am completely misinformed, but I feel that in Catholic school they will not only get a solid education, but that people are generally coming from the same set of Truths, and that these Truths are infused in all topics if done well (rather than religion class, or religious ed after school for those in public school, where it is an isolated even).  I know this is a generalization, but I am going with it.  The same is true in public schools in that teachers always have a perspective they are coming from.  And the fact that public schools don't allow teachers to voice their opinions about faith, etc, then you get an anti-faith environment rather than a neutral one.  That is what the separation of church and state has done.  Am I making any sense here?  I don't want my children to hear one thing at home and then get completely challenged on it at school.  Not that I don't appreciate varying opinions, but I want school to be a place that reinforces what they are getting at home and vice versa so we can build off each other. 

Now enters hubby.  The CPA.  We are surrounded by good public schools.  They are better today than the ones dh and I attended (I attended Catholic school through grade four and public after that-all in our current area; dh attended public school in a smaller town with less resources).  He made me prove for quite awhile why I preferred Catholic schools. He is on board now.  Somewhat.  But not without cost.  The first point of negotiation was this.  I could have elementary (K-8) or high school, but not both.  I understand that high school is expensive (I am not kidding you, in our town it is $6-8k a year) and why he says this.  We do just fine, but still, that adds up.  But then deep down, I know it really comes down to priorities and what is important to you.  Anyway, dh thought high school as it was more academic would be best for Catholic school, but I argued fiercly that the foundation was more important to build and build why they are young.  I also thought more years with this influence if they go K-8 and also more of their peers will also make the transition to public school at that same time.  Thoughts?  I really am open to folks disagreeing.

The second cost?  I am almost positive dh will use it as a reason to limit our family size.  He is a good guy, yes.  He loves his son more than anything and is a crazy involved father.  But he is still worldly in a lot of aspects and family size is one of them.  He is comfortable.  He wants to stay comfortable.  (I should say he wants three kids, it isn't like he wants a family of one.  And I want a huge family, but he thinks I am being silly and not thinking of the reality that would bring.  Because we started at age 30, I know I won't have an eight child family, likely, but I do not like the idea of closing the door on the gifts God may give us, though age will limit us naturally etc)  He knows I disagree, but then...here I am living comfortably as well...

Dh and I also disagree, though I think he may be budging on this one, about paying for college.  I think that kids appreciate things more when they pay for them themselves.  I don't think parents paying for college is necessary or a right that children have.  Dh's grandma paid for his college.  Plus he got scholarships.  Somehow these funds also translated to extravagant spring break trips.  My college wasn't going to be paid for.  I wasn't sure how I would go, but I qualified for financial help that didn't have to be paid back, got a few loans, and also received benefits because my dad is a retired veteran.  Anyway, I told him I would rather our kids took on loans (and we would discuss what is reasonable and what could be paid back with the job they are going to school for).  I even went so far as to say we should put the same money in roths for them. They could have a million at 65 for the same amount.  Seriously.  Invest young and it multiplies.  Dh taught me that.  Anything but paying for their college.  Am I nuts?  I really think it makes more sense to pay for Catholic school than college.

Anyway...now we have a new issue related to Catholic school.  Some background first.  You all know I have mentioned I didn't grow up with a lot of resources.  At all.  I think it is so important not to overindulge our children.  Dh and I talk a lot about how to help our children be appreciative when we have more resources than growing up.  Growing up that way made us who we are.  We want our children to have that, but can't exactly recreate the circumstance (please don't think we are rolling in dough, I am speaking comparatively).  We will obviously have to expose them to the whole spectrum of incomes and definitely to service and volunteer work for those less fortuante. 

I mentioned we are surrounded by good schools.  One district that I went to is known for less money, but is still good.  Another district is incredibly wealthy.  And another district, the one we are in now, is in between.  Dh knows since I met him I never wanted to live in the wealthy district.  I hear stories about how junior high Valentine's dances are more like prom with limos and restaurants and the like.  And I knew a 13 year old 10 years ago that got her nails professionally done.  Life is not normal in that district, and I didn't want our kids to have a skewed view of normal.  However...dh and I were recently told our excellent Catholic school down the street is somewhat like this. Kids with designer everything accesorizing their uniforms, that it starts even at preschool with the parents, and that so many of the kids are going there because their parents see the school as prestigious, not for faith reasons.  And then an early childhood educator I respect criticized their preschool program.  She said the parents want academics and to them it means homework at a young age.  As a result, there are less manipulatives and more seat work, which is not what research recommends for this age group.  Evidently parents not in education think they know best and have a lot of pull.  Ugh!  What do I do?  That is not what I wanted for my children at all.  We don't have Catholic schools in the area that go by tithing or have free tuition, though I know they exist and welcome a more diverse group of students.  Dh looked at me seeing the hypocrisy that I wasn't aware of until then.  Funny though, I think the prestige part makes it more appealing to him, not less.  Again, worldy, but I love him.

Interested in your thoughts on all of these "issues"...I just want to do right by my kids!

24 comments:

Sew said...

I do have some thoughts. :) hahahaha I just quickly skimmed the post so you might have touched on this...

I could be completely wrong...I do not know what the future holds for school. I do not know if I will have the energy to provide homeschooling to my children, it's something I'm discerning. Gosh, brainfogged Sew homeschooling...Heaven help us... ;) But it's on my mind.

Public verses Catholic. I have very little research just an opinion from the daily Mass I attend and from our school at our church.

Not all the children there are Catholic, well lets say about 5 of them are Catholic. So the outside influences that you want guarded at a young age are still there as I'm assuming would be in a public school. Education is important but I also think the outside influences of the peers are important too.....For me right now that is my main focus, but then it can all change and public school might be the only thing we have available to us, who knows?

I have no clue. Absolutely no clue.

But then I see Allie and how much heart and soul she puts into her class and would LOVE my children to be taught by her...Her school is right down the street. ;)

But then not all the teachers are Catholic and I think it's important...But I don't know....

Ack, I'm interested to see what other comments are....

Sarah said...

I have thoughts too. I went to a "middle class" Catholic elementary school until middle school. The academics were decent, the religious aspect (in hindsight) was lukewarm but still had a positive influence on me. My elementary years were the last good years of school for me until college. But the academic program was good for me too.

I attended a "middle class" middle school and high school where I just never felt like I fit in. Not every child is as miserable in public school as I was... but the class sizes were bigger, the pressure to wear cool clothes greater, and something was just... "different." I had some great teachers but in the public schools it was more difficult to connect due to larger classes.

That said, my Catholic school peers who went on to the Catholic high school had an "up-scale" experience that did not really do them any good. My class in particular seemed to struggle through high school and got involved in some pretty bad behavior. Fiance went to an all-boys military Catholic high school and was miserable at the hypocrisy. He couldn't get out of there fast enough.

I say when faced with no stellar options, a lot is going to depend on how you prepare your kids to handle whatever situation they find themselves in. I love this book ("Going Public"): http://www.goingpublicthebook.com/

This couple is evangelical Protestant, but I love how they prepared their kids to be great students and leaders in the public school system. I feel like had I been prepared like this, I would have had a much better experience in public school.

I also think sometimes it's almost easier to deal with hypocrisy and "issues" at a public school than see hypocrisy and dysfunction unfolding among all-Catholic peers. At the same time, if the academics are far greater at the private school then it may be worth it. I personally suffered in college thanks to mediocre academic programs in my public high school

Sew said...

I love Sarahs insights...Yes, I do think it is key preparation for the real world too...Makes so much sense....Ahh my poor babies being sent to the wolves...I can't handle it! ;)

Karen said...

I have some thoughts. I'm not sure how much they will help you but I'll share them anyway. :)

I, like Sew, am considering homeschooling. With the migraines, brainfog, and constant exhaustion, this terrifies me but for some reason it has really been placed on my heart. We shall see.

Obviously, homeschooling isn't an option or a desire for everyone so here are my thoughts on public and private.

I went to public school. I live in a HUGE county and there are dozens upon dozens of schools in our district. I would say that the education I received was less than stellar. Florida kinda has a reputation for crappy education so I realize that this isn't the case everywhere. Our schools are beyond over crowded! The solution for that has been a trainwreck with this class size amendment. We have terrible state mandated standardized testing that is linked to school funding. Basically if your school does well you get all kinds of money but if not you don't. This has led to teachers teaching kids only to pass these tests. There is no time for anything else. Again, I know this isn't everywhere but it's definitely made me not want to send our children there.

My dh went to Cathlic School from K-8. His parents gave him the option for high school and he chose public (I'm happy with that because if not we wouldn't have met). I would say he definitely got a better education in private school. He was way ahead when he switched over! However, I'm not sure he got much of an education regarding his faith. He would definitely agree. And like Sew said, a lot of the kids who go to these schools aren't Catholic. many of them are there to simply get a private school education.

I do also have some experience with Catholic High School as well. I had several friends that went and the school I worked at was right next door to the same one. Again, a lot of the students aren't Catholic. A lot of them are very wealthy. When I was in high school everyone knew the best parties ( meaning drugs and alcohol) were held by TC kids. My dh's best friends went to the Jesuit all boys school and I won't even get into the things they were involved in. However, their education was definitely better.

I'm not sure there is a perfect solution. And I know this didn't help you at all. But I can understand your predicament. I'm feeling the same way!

Sew said...

Karen do I need to hunt you down on google and call you...???? Call me girl! Lets get those issues taken care of for you! ;)

I'm gonna be a duggar! ;)

Sew said...

I swear I'm not stalking you WB. I'm writing thank you notes....hahahahaha And clicking refresh! ;)

Suzie-Q T-Pie said...

I have been to all schools, I was homeschooled, went to Catholic grade school, and a public high school. For me the homeschooling was the best. I got great education, great religion class, and since there was a community for the homeschooling, I was able to also have friends and social time. My Catholic school was ok,the religion class wasn't so great, and allot of teachers that are at Catholic schools aren't even Catholic! So that is something you'd have to check out. I think for me the public school was the worst. The education was alright but it wasn't a priority as much as our sports teams were. But all this being said, I would most rather put my child (even my step son if we had a choice) into a Catholic school. The focus is on education and even though some public shools are good, I would rather my child be with others who have the same morals. But I guess you just have to look into the schools and find out wich one fits you best!

Thankful said...

I went to a rural (inexpensive) Catholic school from K-12 but it was still a struggle for my parents to make it work for all three of the kids. I don't feel like the caliber of education was much different than my peers at the public school, but I agree with you that having Christ-centered education, particularly in the K-8 years, was wonderful. I thoroughly enjoyed my high school years, too, but feel that K-8 were the more influential for me. My family also struggled because there weren't resources at the Catholic schools like there were at the public schools (one of us is on the autistic spectrum and one is gifted/talented).

As for college, I am with you on this one! Snicks' grandma also paid for his (and he had scholarships) but we are STILL paying off my loans and probably will for the next ten years. Yes, the loans suck, but I certainly appreciate my education each month when it comes out of our account. AND I still give a small donation to the college annually to show my support of their work. We don't plan to put away for our children's education EXCEPT through the UPromise program which will likely amass about enough to pay for one semester of books (will they even use books when our kids are in college?) since we just have it connected to our credit card and grocery cards.

We are also in the unique position that Snicks will likely be working in higher ed, which hopefully means some sort of tuition support or reciprocity for our children (we are happy to limit their options to where they can go for free/reduced - they can pay more to go elsewhere). We highly value education, but also believe that it is not something that our children are entitled to through our saving. We would prefer to make sure that our retirement savings are secure so that we do not burden our children in the future. I also like your idea of putting money away in an IRA for their retirement.

Olya said...

Hi,
I am not Catholic but will share my opinion anyway. You Dh is not Catholic, right? I see how hard it can be to make these choices when your Dh comes from a different prospective.
I agree with you that solid foundation is very important. Not that I am against living in the world and try to over protect my kids, but you wouldn't throw your baby into a lion den, would you? You want to equip them for the fight first, let them get established in the faith they are to defend later, give them foundation for decision making. I'd say it's more important to go to a Christian school K-8. Now, to the subject of Catholic schools. I heard a lot of bad things about them, I also heard that our local Catholic school is pretty good. We chose to send our kids to a Baptist school (we are not Baptist) because to enroll you have to show that you are an active member of an evangelical church. They called our pastor and made sure we are members in good standing and do not have any disciplinary issues with the church. Also, ALL their teachers have to be active members in their church and in good standing. That way we know that the kids experience the same influences from teachers and peers as they do at home. Also, the academics are very good.
It is expensive, but is worth it. We decided that if we can't pay for it I will home school. I didn't grow up in the States so it bothers me that I might not be able to provide a variety of things that schools here do only because I don't know what they are, but God gives grace for each day, so we should be fine.
As far as college, I agree with you. They value it more and work harder if they have to pay for it.

Anonymous said...

I went to public schools for K-12 so I have no other reference but I thought I would share my experience. My high school was ranked 3rd in the nation when I was a student there. However, the academics were a joke. I was able to get into a top-ranked college with a scholarship because I attended this high school but was completely unprepared for college. I had never even written a research paper! I eventually figured it out and did fine in college but it was rough at first. My dh had a similar experience. For us, it comes down to what we think will be best for our child both academically and spiritually. Right now, that is leading us towards homeschooling but we have a few years until we have to decide!

Maryanne said...

Hi!

Schooling is such a TOUGH decision! I totally understand, because I am still discerning what is best for my children.

Right now our oldest is in first grade in a Catholic elementary. She also went to the parish preschool and pre-K. Our four year old is now in pre-K at the parish. I do like our local Catholic schools. The public schools here are cutting out a lot of programs such as music and art. Also the public schools here have let go many teachers recently. The Catholic school our children are attending right now is good, however, I am still considering homeschooling. I have prayed, and continue to pray a lot about doing whatever is God's will with regard to my kids' education. It's a tough call.

My husband also has a problem with paying for private school. He has (mostly) come around, especially in light of the decline in good public schools in our area. We have four children, and I know that it worries him to have to pay for their schooling kindergarten through college. It worries me too, but I am just concerned about them getting the best education possible, whether it be private, public, or at home.

I might add that both my husband and I went to public schools throughout our education, so this is our first experience with anything else. Many prayers that you find what is right for your family!

Anonymous said...

I attended Catholic school for grades 6-8. I am not sure the reason why my parents placed me there; it could have had something to do with having been bullied in my public elementary school. But Catholic school was not any better in that aspect and I think what I experienced there in the students and the religious faculty added to my disbelief in the faith, or seeing the faith as no better than any others. Most of the girls kissed up to the nuns, yet they were nasty and cruel behind the nuns' backs. Plus the nuns favored one particular girl who said she was going to become a nun. (She didn't.) So, on a social and religious aspect, it was not an improvement over public school.

I think you would do okay if you had your children attend public school but reinforced your beliefs strongly at home. There are definitely at least a couple of blogs by devout Catholic moms who ensure their families live out the liturgical year at home. They homeschool, but many of the things they do, you could do also, even if you work outside of the home.

As for college, I'd suggest encouraging your children to go to state/public schools, and, if possible, complete their first two years at a community college to save money. The less debt you come out of school with, the better. My parents were kind enough to pay for community college; I was dumb enough to go to a private school, which I paid for. And paid for. And paid for. In my buyer's remorse once the loans came due in tough economic times in which I had difficulty finding a job, I, and my potential employers, saw no difference in my private university degree from that which I could have attained more cheaply at a state school.

I agree that paying (or partially paying) for one's own education makes one appreciate it more. Many of the spoiled brats at my private university partied and failed out because Mommy & Daddy were paying for everything, including their BMWs and Mercedes, spring breaks, and so on. (The jaw of a suitemate fell to the floor when she saw me getting ready for work one morning. "You WORK"? she asked in shock.)

In most cases, where you went to college is not as important as that you did attend college and received an undergraduate degree (caveats being that the college was regionally-accredited and recognized by the US Dept of Ed., and not a diploma mill).

Good luck with your decisions!

Hebrews 11:1 said...

That's kind of a tough call. I tend to lean toward Catholic schools but the expense and quality are issues to take into consideration. I wish I could tell you which was best...I guess I will just say pray about it and go with your gut.

Chasing said...

I used to feel the same way about the unions until my best friend moved from Howard County MD (one of the best school districts in the nation) to Georgia. She is constantly ridiculed, treated poorly and yelled at by the administration with absolutely no support or advocate. The union is a joke in GA. Mostly just for networking. These teachers are totally unprotected and vulnerable. She has developed an anxiety difficulty just because of this job situation and can't quit because she can't find another job. It definitely changed my mind on the unions.
As for the schools. I'm all for Catholic K-8 and public high school. I think the formation early on is the most important. Of course I'm a product of public school all the way, and am one of the few people from my parish including the Catholic school kids(in my class/age) that still practice. Oh, the irony.
As for school vs. homeschooling. I think sometimes people get stuck on their "philosophy" and force their kids into what they want, instead of evaluating each individual child's needs. I think it is totally ok for some kids in a family to go to school while other kids in the same family are homeschooled. I think it ultimately needs to be based on the individual child's needs.

Kelly said...

You make some excellent points. I have strong opinions on this as we recently took my son out of his Catholic Pre-school (a pre-K to grade 8 school). I would strongly suggest looking at any school very closely. Look at the school mass. Some schools change the mass to appeal to children by adding rock music, a projector with lyrics, clapping, etc. Not all students are Catholic and I think some schools try to appeal to them by making a bigger celebration out of secular Holidays and culture. See if they celebrate All Saints Day or Halloween.

Decide how important school acreditation is. Not all Catholic schools are but they may still be good. Some schools may refuse accreditation to avoid having to give sex education and doing other things that may be contrary to Catholic Teaching.

Consider an Independent Catholic School that is approved by your Diocese. They are not attached to a parish, but may still have masses at a school chapel. Local priests take turns saying mass. These schools are usually smaller and can be more traditionally Catholic. The one we are considering prides themselves on the number of religious vocations that come out of their school. They have daily mass and the children receive the eucharist on their knees. Beautiful!

The above things are important to us but only you know what is good for your family. Good for you for discerning this early. I wish I would have put more thought into it at the time. We made the mistake of choosing the "popular" school that many families in our church send their children to. The principal received rave reviews on the web. However, he could not handle any adversity and exhibited questionable behavior.

I would definately choose K-8. Heck, maybe by that time high school will be more affordable! :)

Lauren @ Magnify the Lord with Me said...

I was a CAtholic school teacher for 7 years- and it led me to decide to homeschool our kids. I wrote about it here: http://psalm34-3.blogspot.com/search/label/Education

I agree with your hubby that high school is more important than elementary. When they're in elementary, it's easier for you to provide that Christian atmosphere and to school them in theology. In high school they look more to their peers.

I agree with you RE: paying for college. I did it and it was hard, but worth it!!!

You have the same snobby approach in Catholic schools, too, by the way. One school I taught at had parents pulling their daughters out of class to get manicures and their hair done for their first Holy Communion. Because THAT'S the point... Ugh. (Note- I taught 3rd grade there, not 2nd...no way would I have allowed that!)

Blessings! Great topic!

Abigail said...

Pray about the homeschooling option. God could be calling a brainy girl like you to be the one giving your kids an outstanding elementary education at a price your CPA hubby would approve.

WheelbarrowRider said...

I appreciate all the comments, please keep them coming! Some issues brought up don't apply to our area and schools (our public schools are very good here, academically, thankfully, which makes it tougher to decide for dh), but others are ones I didn't think to even look into about our specific Catholic school so I appreciate knowing what to ask to learn if ours is good in ways I am not sure about. I appreciate so many insights coming from all of you about your experiences, etc-such a wealth of info presented here! Keep 'em coming, I am hanging on every word!

WheelbarrowRider said...

Oh, and dh is Catholic btw. Unfort, I think he thinks academics are #1 from school, and maybe sports and religion are tied for #2?! :)

prayerfuljourney said...

Good post...you are right...seat work is not for pre-k students..ugh! That is sad. I think it's okay to do some here and there...to introduce it...but not as a main part of the day. They need to play and learn social skills.

Onto the Catholic school talk...I went to a Cath school for 8 years and for h.s. I went public. My older siblings attended both elementary and h.s Cath schools. They went on to universities and had professions right out of college...me? I had to do a junior college first..then university...and my first job was working in a call center. It took a lot of hard work to move up the corporate ladder. I think the difference for me is that in Cath elementary school.. I was sheltered...and I think that is okay. I din't hear bad words all day..I did not see super aggressive children...I was not exposed to lots of things that children are exposed too. I had a happy childhood. I made lifelong friends for I was in the same class with the same students for 8 years! In pub schools..they switch the kids around..every year they work with new peers. Pub H.S. was a culture shock for me and having a boyfriend became the priority..not school.

I've subbed in both Cath and Pub schools and I feel Cath schools can really enforce no tolerance...pub schools technically can't. Parents are more involved in Cath schools..so if there's issues...not all..but most will be on board. I love bringing the Lord into the classroom. I can look at that cross and say a quick prayer when I'm being challanged by a student. I'm stud. teaching in a public school now...kids are "wild"..they use "ugly" words...talk about dating, very little kindness or manners. I could go on and on. Forget about academics as being a priority. I would say out of my 24 students...maybe 10 care about how they are doing and have family support.

So the question is...do you want your children to have morals, values, the potential for life long pals and be taught about our faith? At the Cath schools around here...the teachers have to be Catholic. In pub schools..the teachers can try to teach the children about values, etc...but it's hard to enforce when those things are not being taught at home. I've been in both types and I've worked in both...I think there is a difference.

Good post and I don't think it's too early to think about education for your children. Pray about it and the Lord will help you. My parents were not rich but they were able to put five children through Cath schools...and college. They made the necessary sacrifices to do that and it's paid off..we are all doing pretty well. Praise God!

You could always call the Cath school and ask if you can observe some classrooms or get a tour. I'm sure they'd do that. Praying for you!!!

Tridentine Wife said...

I didn't go to Catholic school and my husband did from 5-8th grade. There aren't too many differences between us except he was exposed to far less of a negative enviornment but that was also b/c of parenting and where we lived. I think wherever you and your husband chose to send your kids, you will most likely have the biggest influence on them. You are the parents, you will guide them and teach them. The school will only be a backdrop.

I know it's scary to think about your kids being influenced in public school but in my opinion unless it's a parochial school being taught by the faithful religious, the experience will likely be the same as public. This is from my experience teaching in a Catholic school taught by the laity until this year when it's now being run by Dominican sisters. (Thanks be to God.)

I do understand about the cost. Our Catholic high schools cost the same as most university tuitions! We are planning on homeschooling, but I know it's not for everyone. Hopefully you will know that wahtever decision you make for your family, it will be the one that God has called you to.

Tridentine Wife said...

Sorry for the typos.

the misfit said...

I certainly agree that paying full college tuition for kids should not be perceived as a given. What complicates things is the financial position of their parents. I assume I am in a similar position to what you were in - my parents could not possibly have paid for my college tuition outright. I was a good student and got into a very good school, and it was so wealthy that my very poor family (by its standards) qualified for significant financial assistance. My parents contributed a little, I contributed a little out of my summer earnings, and I took on a bit in loans. I think that was a good balance, but if my parents had had enough money to pay for it, then they would have had to do so - or I would have walked away with $140k in loans, which is not reasonable. If the family is of more moderate circumstances (i.e., more money than mind had, but not wealthy), then you have to get more creative, I think - if you live in some states the in-state tuition can get you an excellent education. There are merit scholarships available some places. Kids should absolutely be working in high school to save for college anyway, IMHO (I realize this depends somewhat on the family's circumstances, but I don't think kids should graduate from college so privileged they never had to serve french fries. It just builds character). So I think there are a lot of factors, but it's hard to plan ahead down to the last detail. Some kids will not want or need to go to college. Some kids are so brilliant (or such talented athletes) the college will practically pay them. You never know, right? And as for elementary versus high school...well, I definitely see your husband's point. I might research the individual schools more closely...it's possible that the public elementary schools don't really work on indoctrinating kids and are pretty neutral, and would be harmless, and maybe the high schools are propagandizing heavily on harmful "diversity" points. In that case, elementary. But it's also possible that the local elementary schools are truly terrible and the high school is no more offensive than my public high school (sort of middling), and a kid with a good formation could manage it well. ("Your teacher is untrustworthy" seems like a hard message for a 2nd-grader to understand well; easy for a 10th-grader. Anyway, it was easy for me.)

Anyway...it sounds like one of them there complicated judgment calls. And especially with the background you have, I know you'll do a great job for your kids. Also, if you end up with difficulties over the possibility of having too MANY kids - well, enjoy it for the rest of us, please! Not that I think that would be easy, just that it's amazing that that's something you might have to think about.

Beth said...

This is such a hard topic. For many reasons I'm considering homeschooling - mostly peer influences and just the fact that I WANT to be with my kids. We have a Catholic school down the street with our parish that would be wonderful I'm sure, but.... I kind of feel like God is leading me to homeschool. We'll see what happens. Our Catholic high school is 10K/year right now, and we won't be needing that for 10 years.

I feel confident that God will lead us to the right decision. We've been actively discerning for 2 years and we still have 2 years to go before M starts kindergarten.