why my daughter goes to public school



A few days ago I said I would pick one question to answer for An Uncomfortable January post. You guys sent in some good ones & I may just have to answer more in the future. The question I am answering is the one that sent me into a panic , so I knew it was the right one to respond to.

Why does my daughter go to public school?

From the moment I found out I was pregnant, I realized parenting is dangerous waters. Never, ever, have I experienced anything with so much judgement and opinion.

Will you use a midwife or OBGYN?

Will you do it naturally or with an epidural?

Are you going to do vaccines? 

Will you discipline or do a more child-centered parenting?

Co-sleeping or cry it our in her crib?

You will know if you answered the question wrong because they will smile and say, “Oh, well… um. If that is what you felt was best then you have to go with that I suppose.”

Translation: You are a parenting failure.

My goodness. If you aren’t a parent yet, brace yourself. Some people have strong opinions based on personal experience. Actually, we all do. And some parents are obsessive because they are totally afraid they will irreversibly screw up their kids.

To add fuel to the fire, my daughter started kindergarten this year. We looked at private schools, thought about homeschooling for maybe 3 seconds before scratching that option from the list, and visited our local public school.

We picked public school.

Why? We have a really good public school. Great academics, most of the kids come from strong families, and we know the principal. Several teachers there go to our church and told us what a truly great environment it is.

I don’t think I am sacrificing my daughter to secular thought or think she will turn into a meth addict when she graduates.

I realize that not everyone has a positive public school option. And even if you do, then you may choose to homeschool or use a private school. That is fine and there are plenty of reasons those are good choices. If your life gives you no choice but to send your kids to a underperforming public school, they will be fine too. Because God’s got their back.

Making the choice of where you send your kids is a big decision and an important one. We just have to understand that there isn’t a right or wrong answer. Every situation is different. Each kid is different.

Will all public school children become sexually active and fail to get into a good university? No.

Are all private school kids snobby with a sense of entitlement? No.

Will home schooled kids turn out socially awkward and unable to adjust to the “real” world? No. 

The important thing is that we don’t make decisions out of fear. That never leads us or our kids anywhere worth going.

So, lets all just take a deep breath. My daughter goes to public school. Maybe yours doesn’t. Guess what? We can still be friends.


Filed under An Uncomfortable January, Kiddos

4 responses to “why my daughter goes to public school

  1. We live in the middle of our city where there are not really good schools. We’re about to put our little 100-year-old bungalow on the market so we can move into a better district. I’ve been in SUCH a wad about schools because we’re pretty much uprooting our whole way of life depending on our decision, and as I pray about it, I hear the Holy Spirit say “Any choice you make out of fear is the wrong choice!” For me, that means I’m scared to move to the suburbs! I’m more comfortable downtown! Your post is such a good confirmation for me.

    • Susan, my heart breaks for you! I have a deep love for bungalows and know it must be so hard to give up. Suburbs are hard for me too & I prefer crowded downtowns. Way to obey God anyway! Let me know how it goes!

  2. Jeannie McGinnis

    I thought about homeschooling for 3 seconds as well, especially as it is hardly a norm here in the UK. We do public school, and there are few Christians. I think the key is for kids to have a strong church community with like-minded peersas none of the children in our church have Christian friends at their different schools across the city, and they see their church peers as their best friends.

    • Ha, Jeannie. I think our kids are better off with us not homeschooling! You are right, church is such an important place for friendships to develop. Love your blog posts recently about cross cultural failures!

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