BY DEE CRUZ-MURPHY
In 2002 when I divorced my husband I moved back to Los Alamos with my son in tow. Even though we moved around between Los Alamos and White Rock, we never left the county because I knew my son needed every educational opportunity that Los Alamos could provide. Since I was a single parent, there was no option for homeschooling, and no option for private/charter/religious school. However, things have changed in 20 years, public/private/religious school is not the same, and neither is the homeschool forum.
Did you know that in the wake of the COVID shutdowns a significant number of parents have turned to education alternatives, such as: Homeschool Pods/Micro-Schools/Homeschool Co-Ops, and even Concurrent Courses for High School level students? In the PBS article “As U.S. schools reopen, many families continue to opt for homeschooling” (https://www.pbs.org/newshour/education/as-u-s-schools-reopen-many-families-continue-to-opt-for-homeschooling) we see a 63% for homeschooling rise in the first year of COVID, which only dropped by 17% the following year. Parents who were not happy with what was happening with their children education pulled their kids from the public/private/religious institutions and formed “Micro-Schools”. The statistic indicates that these alternatives worked through the height of the pandemic, and most parents were happy with the results and kept the kids there.
You don’t have to feel like you are stuck, and you have no options. And you don’t have to feel like you have to “go to the mattresses” over curricula you feel is inappropriate. It’s okay if you don’t like what is going on; you are not the first, you are not the last, and you definitely are not alone. And maybe at the end of the day there are some sensitive issues YOU want to personally talk to YOUR kids about….that’s okay since they are YOUR kids. I am not trying to say one way is better than another, but if you don’t like what is going on just know that there are alternatives. While my son was growing up he went to Tae Kwon Do with some stellar homeschool kids (well, they are stellar adults now) who have gone on to do some amazing things. And my son went to public school and he is doing well, as are the kids he went to public school with (well, they’re also adults now). At the end of the day you have to do what YOU feel is best for YOUR kid, after all they are YOUR kid. And you shouldn’t feel persecuted for liking one curricula over another, or for how you would like to teach your kids about sensitives issues. There are so many options: public, private, religious, homeschool, & concurrent courses. Have your pick, it’s all good, no hard feelings. As Bruce Lee said “Be like water.”
Here are some resources:
- Dual Credit & Concurrent Enrollment :: UNM Los Alamos | The University of New Mexico