When Is It Time To Quit Homeschooling?

When is it time to admit that life circumstances or homeschooling in general isn’t working? When is it time to quit homeschooling?

Over the years, I have faced several difficulties that caused me to question if it was time to throw in the towel and quit homeschooling.

Every single diagnosis created a dread in me. What if I am doing the wrong thing? What if I am failing my child?

Questioning My Decision To Homeschool

I worked my way through doctors questioning my decision, therapists wondering if my child’s speech would be better if he was in a classroom, me wondering if social skills would come more easily.

Then the reality of homeschooling children with significant learning differences set in. What if he never learns to read? What if math never clicks? How will he ever be able to navigate signs, drive, fill out a job application, consistently work? What if being in school, in a classroom, could help with all of these things? Again, what if I am failing my child?

Over time, I came to see that in our case, the one on one attention my children received from me, as their parent and their teacher, was more effective than a school environment. It took years to see the results, but somewhere in the mid-teens, things clicked, for all of us.

Doctors began commenting on how wonderful it was that we homeschooled. My oldest got into college. My youngest began reading and then driving.

I had proof that was impossible to see in the messy middle of it all.

Homeschooling As A Single Parent

My youngest is graduating this June. This new year marks my last six months homeschooling.

Life has thrown yet another curve ball that has absolutely caused me to think long and hard about how to handle my son’s senior year. My husband, my children’s step father, has left.

While our actual separation began almost a year ago, the final breaking of our marriage is still fresh, foreign, and raw.

With only six months left, there is no way I will not homeschooling my youngest to the end. But had this happened a year ago, two years ago, three years ago? It would’ve been a much more difficult commitment to make.

I have to admit I may have quit homeschooling.

When Is It Time To Quit Homeschooling?

I have worked with many families over the years. This question comes up with every mom I have ever had the privilege of supporting.

It’s typically asked in desperation and fear. What if I am failing my child? What if I can’t do this?

If you are asking the question from a place of fear, I think the answer is never really about school vs. homeschooling. It’s about a struggling child and a mom, pouring herself out to try and help.

Conversely, several families I know have made the transition to public or private school from homeschooling and the kids are thriving.

The difference, from my perspective, is that they made the decision because they felt like their children were ready for it. It was a logical next step. And while there was emotion involved in making the decision, it was not done in desperation.

What If You Have No Choice?

I shared my new role as a single homeschooling parent with you because I recognize that my answer to the question, “Should I quit homeschooling?” is horrible if you are in a position where you feel like you have no choice.

Over the course of the next few months, I will share examples and options for how to handle having to send your child to school, even if you don’t feel like it is the right choice. But please, know this…

Your child is so much more than the educational choices you make for them. Your role as a parent is so much more than homeschooler. With or without homeschooling, the impact of your love, care, concern, advocacy and support matters far more than your child’s educational environment.

Quit homeschooling. Don’t quit homeschooling. Neither matters as much as your love and care.

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  1. Tracy Alsterlund says:

    So sorry for all the losses and changes you and y our boys are moving through.
    Praying for you all that your next steps are guided by God in ways that are more than you could ask or imagine and may He be ever close to you during the days ahead.

  2. Thank you for being so open and honest to help the rest of us. I wish you luck. I also hope your transition to a new life is a peaceful, safe one.

  3. I’m sorry life has thrown a curve ball for you and your boys. Appreciate your honesty. May 2024 be blessed for you all. You will get through this and you never know what great things are around the corner.

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