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I Have Been Home-schooled All Of My Life, But My Dad Is Sending Me To A Public School?

From Our Forum a Reader Asks:

I am thirteen and in year eight. All my life i've been home-schooled, but just recently, my dad decided to put me and my brother into a public school. He says we need to socialize properly. There is One more week of the holidays. What's it like(Public high school)? Is the work hard? I love being home-schooled, but i think that my dad is right – me and my brother need to socialize. I've never really been around other kids though. I have, but not in a schooling situation. Basically, my brother and i were just wondering what it's like. My dad told me that sometimes kids get bullied? He also said that some kids get into physical fights… Is this true?

14 comments to I Have Been Home-schooled All Of My Life, But My Dad Is Sending Me To A Public School?

  • Melissa C

    I am sorry that you have to go of to public school, I don’t know your situation, but you have to honor your parents no matter what.
    It really depends on the school as far as what you experience. I am sure there will be some kids that are ignorant but hopefully as many that will be friendly. Just focus on the positive and don’t try to impress anyone. Be yourself! If you want to “wear a skirt to your ankles” you should BTW. Don’t change who you are to to fit in to any crowd.
    There are resources on the web you could look up and present to your parents about the myths and studies done on socialization and how Home Schooled students actually excel. You could present that to them respectfully, but the bottom line is you must do what they say.
    I have been busy today, but I did remember this report I read you may be interested in:http://www.cbc.ca/news/viewpoint/vp_ekok…
    Otherwise, just do a search using “Home Schooling and socialization” It addresses a lot of the Myths scientifically. Make sure you are involved in sports, clubs and civic activities and assure your father you will continue to be.
    OH, I have no idea whether “Prof Black (or whatever his name is) is for real, but if he is he is obviously bitter or ill educated in the Home Schooling topic. It doesn’t take a professor to do a little research. The few kids he MAY (if that’s even true) be basing his opinions on are not enough to prove something.
    Good Luck

  • Prof. Black

    I would try not to worry. I would assume you are probably going to a decent school. Most schools are fairly safe and in a good neighborhood. The ones where you get bullied and in fights would be more likely to be in a large city in a high-crime neighborhood which you probably don’t live in. Also, guys tend to get more in physical fights, while girls either don’t fight or at the most might just call each other a name or two, like witch or something. Nothing you couldn’t handle. And just by reading your post, you sound like somebody that doesn’t sound like you’ll be stirring up trouble, so you probably will be avoiding fights and not starting them it sounds like. I never was in a fight in my life in public school for example. I’m sure you’ll be fine!!!
    Re: the work, it was not that hard, but my niece that just graduated a few years ago says it is much harder and she does have much more over the weekends. Sorry about that!!! Not hard, just time consuming!!!

  • Karen

    First of all, I’d like to say that I have had a rather similar experience as you are about to have. The only difference is that I began in public school and started home-schooling when I was in the third grade, while you have been home-schooled from the beginning, and are entering public school in the eighth grade.
    Now, if you have been applying yourself to your studies (and judging by your grammar, I would say you have most definitely applied yourself), you should have very little, if any, difficulty with the curriculum. Nevertheless, the most important thing for you to concentrate on is the schooling. A good education is far more valuable than some trivial, and short-lived, “fun.”
    Don’t worry too much about acclimating to this new school your first year or two. You’re still young enough to become well enough acquainted with public schooling, and with your future classmates, before the peer pressure really gets tough.
    Unfortunately, there are bullies in public school, and the best way to avoid bullies is to stand up for yourself and not take any slack from them. Be your own individual, and don’t let anyone dissuade you from that. Since you’re female, you won’t have to worry about physical fights as much as your brother will, but you will want to watch yourself when it comes to boys and their overly jealous, insecure girlfriends. They’d be the ones who’d want to fight you, especially if they feel their short-term, frivolous relationship threatened by you. Your brother, on the other hand, will most definitely want to learn how to defend himself from bullies, and a self defense class might serve him well.
    I hope that this has helped you, and that you have an enjoyable experience in high school. Take care and God Bless!

  • Josh

    my friends older brother went to public high school and he loves it!!!!

  • stephani

    I beg you to please PLEASE ask your parents to get the book, “Safely Home”, by Tom Eldredge, from http://www.visionforum.com/ . It’s only $10 and worth every penny (and so much more!).
    “The choice has always been knowledge or relationship. Which is more important? In Safely Home, Tom Eldredge shows how this was the original conflict in the Garden, a clash that would later be the dividing line between Greek (humanist) and Hebrew (biblical) worldviews. Mr. Eldredge offers practical and biblical hope for those dads who put relationships first and who dare to go safely home.”
    Please, have your parents get that book BEFORE sending you to public school! Please!
    I’m sorry, I should have addressed the issue about respecting your parents. That’s a must. You respect them no matter what. If they keep you homeschooled, respect them. If they send you to public school, respect them. Don’t let public schools influence you in negative ways and turn you away from the teachings of the Bible (if your a Christian that is).
    Melissa C is right on! (2 answers below.)
    I don’t know who this “Prof. Black” guy is, but he doesn’t have a clue what he’s talking about, and I think you’ll understand that being homeschooled yourself. 🙂 He’s out raiding the homeschooling section trying to convince everyone that homeschooling is terrible when he doesn’t even know what he’s saying!!
    Who are children supposed to be socializing with? Godly family and friends or 30 children their age that have dirty mouths, can’t behave, don’t have any respect for anybody…
    Scripture says that it is the parents responsibility to train up their children. I don’t understand why so many people think it’s necessary to give up the right and the joy of being able to raise their children for the sake of “socializing”. But, like I said already, please ask your parents get that book, and respect their every decision.
    God Bless!

  • Yep-itsM

    Don’t be scared.
    You will be fine.
    It is true that there are some bullies in school. That doesn’t mean it will necessarily happen to you.
    It is also true that there are sometimes physical conflicts in school. Again, this is not necessarily going to happen to you.
    I believe homeschooling is best, but that doesn’t mean that you will not succeed in public school. Just because you haven’t been to school before doesn’t mean you will be a misfit.
    I would not go around advertising to the other kids that you have been homeschooled…some people just like to pick on you for any reason…and word travels fast in school.
    You will not be in any tougher position than new students who just moved to the area and don’t know anyone.
    Go in and be yourselves! You will do great!
    Good luck!

  • Yo!

    Unless someone on this board attends your school, no one can say for sure how often these things will happen.
    Not every school is the same (inner city, rural, well funded, overcrowded, small); it depends on those and more, like the prevailing attitude of the community, the leadership of the principle and staff, etc. Children can be very mean (verbally), but try not to let them bother you. If you were doing well in your homeschool work, the academics should be easy.
    I am confident that you and your brother will adjust. There will be things you like, and things you don’t, but you will be okay. Talk to the kids in your neighborhood who go there, if possible, and get involved in a club or sport there. It will help you make friends. Good luck!

  • LadyE

    Every person’s experience is different when entering the public system late. It depends on the school, and it depends on you. If you have a lot of inner strength and have learned to accommodate others without compromising who you are, you will be fine. The first few days are always awkward…you feel like you stick out like a sore thumb…but that passes, and you soon start to adapt. The hardest things for me (entering public school in grade 10) were learning how to accept other people’s views as different from my own, and learning how to interact with teachers. I had been around other kids in their homes or mine before, so I knew how to relate to them. What I didn’t anticipate was the level of independence the teachers expected of me. What I didn’t realize was that they were preparing us, not only for college, but also for the work force. It is important to pay attention to their instructions the first time, and to learn to figure it out for yourself. That’s not to say you can’t ever ask for help, but the teacher cannot offer you one-on-one supervision the whole day long! And they probably won’t chase you down the halls saying “remember you have that essay due tomorrow!”
    Also, at first, I felt it was important for me to voice my opinion whenever it was different from the majority. Sometimes that’s good, but sometimes it’s wise to let others be diffrerent from you! You get labelled as a narrow-minded know-it-all pretty quickly if you won’t let others be themselves! Treat their views with the same respect you expect for yours! The most valuable quality you can learn before you get there is diplomacy! I know loads of homeschooled kids, having been one myself, and this is something each and every one of us struggled with!
    One last note to make you feel good…my sister started public school at 13 (grade 8) and she recently graduated in the top ten of her class (she and all her friends made up that group.) She is socially well-adjusted and her employer really likes her.

  • mamaDee

    Think of it as Harry Potter going to Hogwarts-you will thank your Dad -every change is stressful at first but learning how to handle stress is a major part of life. Try to find an activity you enjoy-a sport,the band, Spanish club, whatever-it will help make a school within a school.

  • NuncProT

    i was home-schooled from k-6th and i am in high school right now. public highschool isn’t that bad. it’s definitely different than homeschooling, but you get used to it. bullying doesn’t happen all that much. it’s nothing to really worry about. it’s kinda hard, but no harder than the work you would get while being home-schooled. as for physical fights, none have ever happened at my school. as long as you don’t say anything to anger anyone, you should be perfectly fine. good luck with public school.

  • penguins

    Please take some time and check out information about so-called *socializing* at http://www.NHERI.org.
    I’m not sure what are all of the dynamics in your home. Is your mother there? Is your father a single parent? I have hundreds of questions.
    Does your father realize that there are BETTER ways to have positive contact with a wide variety of people?
    I am not one to tell a child to go against the parent — so I’m having a hard time with this one. I would much prefer that it were your father asking the question.
    Please print out all of the answers that you receive and read through each one. Show them to your Dad.
    If you are in an academic slump and your father is worried about it — you need to find a way to improve your study habits.
    If you are not in a situation where you have regular contact with other people I would suggest that you pursue group activities.
    Please do your very best to remain respectful and obedient to your father. At the same time — try to talk to him about the options.
    If he needs someone else to be there for you he can find other home-school parents that will be happy to supervise your studies. There are academic co-ops, gym groups, sports teams, church things, etc. etc. etc. I can’t imagine anyone having a real lack of appropriate social contact. You should be able to find more than enough.
    IF you do end up in public school PLEASE learn to avoid bad situations — RUN from them. But, seek out good, healthy, honest friends. Focus on studying to do your very best. Build your future by being a good student. Maybe by your diligence your father will see the good in studying at home. Dont’ get caught up in the fads of common social situations. Don’t accept the drugs, the sex, the booze — it will be in your face often. Learn to say NO and mean it. Each of those things kills people every day.
    I for one do not care for the public school mind-set. Children tend to forget to do what is right and instead “go with the crowd”. It will be up to you to be independent and self-controlled.
    You might want to ask him in a letter…. Sometimes parents see questions as “disrespect” of their wishes. But either way ask him what in his mind are the best social advantages to public school and what are the worst disadvantages.
    There are dozens of websites about home-schooling — go to as many as you can and print out the most important information. If your Dad is a Christian it will make a lot of sense to him to learn that children deserve the best chance to become fine, upstanding, smart citizens — they should be untouched by the bad junk in this life — most of that junk gets a hold of young lives in Jr. High and High School.
    I hope this helps to keep you in home-school.
    Pray, pray and pray!!!!! And always do your best to be the best that you can be.

  • Barb

    i started i public then i went to home school 6th through high school. At first you will feel lonely but try to make some friends early it will be a lot easier.

  • guitargu

    Girls (especially at that age) can be very, very mean, but physical fights are less common. They will say things about your clothes or your habits, tell people not to be friends with you, and that sort of thing.

  • svetlana

    Yes, kids get bullied and get into fights, but that just doesn’t happen in school, it happens anywhere you get large numbers of youths.
    You will be fine entering the public system. You’ll find the kids will be welcoming, but they will probably ask you loads of questions about being homeschooled, especially as i think you are from Australia like me, judging by the fact that you are on holidays at the moment, as homeschooling is not very common at all in our country, so most kids will be curious. If you’ve never socialised with other kids before, then you will need to relax and just be yourself – surely you’ve had conversations with other people your own age before? Your dad is doing the right thing for you and your brother, especially in regards to putting you into the public system – i find the private schools are the ones where bullying and the like is more prevalent and uncontrolled. I’m sure you’ve seen the problems at some elite schools in Melbourne in the paper recently?
    In regards to basic things about school – have a look at how the other kids around your area wear their school uniform – you don’t want to be the only student there with your skirt touching your ankles and stuff. It might be ok that people tell you to be yourself, which i agree with, but there are usually strict guidelines for uniform anyway, even at our public schools.
    Remember, 13 is a difficult time for every teenager, regardless of whether they’ve been at the school for 2 years or not. You will find that there will be some nasty kids, but there will also be some lovely ones too who will make you feel welcome and accepted.
    You’ll find the work may be hard, but make sure you ask your teachers for help when you need it, or even your new friends.
    You will find that this time next year you will be enjoying it. Just remember that it might take a little while to settle in, but that is normal for anyone at a new school.
    Good luck and enjoy the rest of the holidays!
    PS Don’t let some people on here scare you about the homeschooling being over. In my opinion, i think being educated in social skills is just as important in the big wide world as your academic education. Your dad knows this and he obviously loves you and wants to do the right thing by you.

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