Home education – not just for the rich and elite

You may have seen the headline in The Times the other week about the musician Paul Weller choosing to home educate his twins, which I shared to my Facebook page.

Home education is not just for the likes of him!

Although it’s wonderful to see more people joining the community, and home education hitting the headlines again, it does nothing for promoting the fact that home schooling as it’s also known – uncomfortable term- is an option to all parents not just the rich and the elite which some may think.

Home educators come from all groups of our very diverse society; rich and poor, all different backgrounds and cultures, both the academic and the non-academic, qualified teachers and non-teachers, those who are religious and those who are not, those who prefer to ‘buy in’ tutoring and pay others for ‘teaching’ and those who do it themselves, and all across the broad range of ethnic communities which now make up our country.

Income is a real concern for many parents who would like to home educate. Not because of the cost of ‘education’ exactly, but more because of the loss of an income whilst one parent stays at home with the children. Job sharing between parents is an option, if you’re two of course, but single parents also tackle the challenge and manage as best they can. You can home educate on a very low budget because it’s not the amount of money you throw at education that makes it worth anything, it’s the interactions and experiences that the learners have that really matter. And even more importantly the support and encouragement, love and happiness that are equally part of a successful life and understanding that living is educative in itself!

I’ve always maintained that you cannot ‘buy’ an education, you can only nurture it and that nurture comes from the people involved. See this post here, about affording to homeschool

And the costs are more about how you choose to live your life, how consumerist you are, your values and priorities and discovering together what really matters to you.

We made all kinds of sacrifices and did without many, many of those things that insidious advertising can make us believe we cannot or are less of a parent in doing so. However, when you really begin to unpick, when you really begin to investigate your buying habits and your budget, you might realise you can be far more economical than you thought and the things that you need the most in life, (after food and shelter of course) like love and togetherness, you don’t have to economise on at all.

An engaged and thoughtful parent is the best resource a home educated child can have. You don’t have to be rich to provide it!


4 thoughts on “Home education – not just for the rich and elite

  1. Great read and so true!
    I could contribute much monetarily to our family if we weren’t home educating. But the time is short, and we are choosing what we are convicted to do!

  2. Hiya Ross,
    Thank you so much for reminding me of how very important your points are. My daughter is 23 and my boys are now in their teens; they’ve all been home educated. My daughter is now a private tutor, and loving what she does, with a passion. They have all chosen to do gcse’s and my boys are going through this process right now. I am a single parent, work part time, live on a budget, and I am not particularly academic myself. It has, become more expensive; distance learning courses, the odd tutors for a small group, and exams, but there are alternative even cheaper options out there too, and I know people who have succeeded right the way through on a very low budget, without being particularly academic themselves.
    You have reminded me of how very important it is not to get caught up under the pressure of fear and panic. My youngest is 14, is particularly strong minded, and most definitely likes to make his own choices; he has decided to study for 5 gcse’s; his own choice. I felt the panic rise once again, as we embarked on this road for the last time, but you have reminded me that I must sit back and allow it to happen, in the same way I did with my daughter and other son. Patience and belief in our children’s ability to create their own journey, makes the journey itself a far more memorable, relaxed, and empowering journey for the young people and parents alike. Thank you once again for your wonderful, insightful, words of wisdom!

    • Thank you so much Theresa, for your kind compliments but also for taking the time to leave your story. I’m sure it will be an inspiration to others who visit here. All the best.

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