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Why We Stopped Homeschooling

For those who have written and asked why we stopped homeschooling, don’t miss this episode! Jesse and I are joined by our kids to share the whole story.

Missed previous episodes of The Crystal Paine show? You can listen to them here.

Why We Stopped Homeschooling

On August 16, 2016, I posted the above picture on Instagram with this caption:

Today is a bittersweet day. After many years of homeschooling, I just dropped the kids off at the new Classical School they are attending this year.

I’m so grateful for those sweet years I had to be a homeschool mom. I’m also grateful for God’s direction this year (for a long list of reasons) that a different schooling option is best for our family and our kids.

I won’t pretend it’s been an easy decision. It’s one that we made with a tremendous amount of thought, prayer, discussion, and tears.

Ultimately, we have so much peace as we walk into this new season. There will be new challenges and new opportunities and I’m excited to see what God has in store as we trust Him to lead one step at a time.

Since posting that Instagram post almost three years ago, we’ve gotten a lot of questions about why we stopped homeschooling and how we knew it was the right decision for our family.

I Know This Can Be a Bit Controversial

I know that schooling choices and decisions are incredibly personal and can be somewhat controversial, so I wasn’t sure that I ever wanted to broach this topic publicly… and I really haven’t for 3 years.

But then, we got many requests to interview our kids on the podcast. We decided to move forward with this and I asked you all on Instagram to submit questions you’d like for us to ask them on their podcast interview.

To our surprise, there were SO many questions begging us to talk about the transition from homeschooling to private school and how it was for our kids. We asked the kids if they’d be willing to share — and they were.

So, enjoy this very honest family conversation around why we stopped homeschooling, how we came to this decision, how it’s been for our kids (one child was very, very angry about it!), and the best things and hard things about switching from homeschool to private school.

No matter your schooling choices or beliefs, I hope this conversation will encourage you in hard choices you have to make. It’s not always easy and sometimes it’s really scary, but you might look back in three years and realize it was so worth it to jump out in faith and do what felt you were being called to do — despite your fears!

First week of “real” school

Why We Stopped Homeschooling Episode

[01:08] – Jesse and I have so much to share with you today! We kick off the show by talking about our recent trips to Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa.

[08:18] – I share a fun email we received from a listener that proves Jesse is right when he used the word “confluence” in a previous episode. (You guys are cracking me up with how much you’re taking his side in this!!)

[09:05] – My mobile hotspot and the ability to work on the road is what is saving my life this week! I also share about a book I just finished on 9/11.

[14:21] – Today we’re joined by our kids — Kathrynne, Kaitlynn, and Silas — and we’ll be discussing a much-requested topic: why we stopped homeschooling.

[16:57] – We never expected to stop homeschooling. In fact, we had always planned to homeschool through high school. Then, we started realizing that Kathrynne needed a change.

[17:59] – Kathrynne shares how she felt about her social life and gets really honest about her struggles with social anxiety and awkwardness.

[23:32] – Truth be told, while we expected Kathrynne to not be happy about the news, we were shocked that she was as upset as she was. We ask Kaitlynn and Silas about their reaction to the news that they were starting school as well.

[26:46] – The kids talk about what their first day and first weeks of school were like for them given their homeschool background. We’ve loved watching our kids really blossom and come alive in unexpected ways the last three years!

[37:02] – The kids share the harder aspects of going to school like getting up early and having to be away from home all day. Jesse shares his thoughts on the transition and how it affected our identity as parents. We also discuss our process for evaluating each year and what is best for each child.

Links and Resources

The podcast is available on iTunesAndroidStitcher, and Spotify. You can listen online through the direct player we’ll include in the show notes of each episode. OR, subscribe to the podcast through a free podcast app on your phone. (Find instructions for how to subscribe to a podcast here.)

Ready to dive in and listen? Hit the player above or search for “The Crystal Paine Show” on your favorite podcast app.

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8 Comments

  • Jill says:

    Thanks for being honest to share your family’s journey. It’s sad you have to put in that controversy disclaimer about you discussion and personal decisions. I truly wish more people could respect that one way is NOT the best for everyone, and different solutions work for different families. It’s sad when someone is so convinced their way is the right and best way, and if someone disagrees, they just feel the need to spew negativity and disapproval. I hope your audience will be more open minded.

    • People have been so kind and respectful… I also want people to know that the respect goes both ways. We’re not saying what we’ve chosen to do is right for everyone; just right for us for this year! And I want people to feel that and not feel like I’m criticizing them in any way if they are doing something very different than us.

  • Sarah in Alaska says:

    I love this and I’m so glad you shared!

  • Cynthia says:

    My family went through a very similar situation around the same time and I was always curious as to why the MSM stopped homeschooling so I was very eager to hear this podcast. I think this was done in a very respectful way and I appreciate all of the honesty. I think it’s a powerful issue that has been pushed aside and I’m thankful that it is getting some attention. I hope it encourages listeners to continually be open to changing paths when necessary and not judging others who have made a switch!
    As a side note, I was very impressed with the maturity of the children when they were being interviewed, what a proud moment for the parents!

  • Claire says:

    I don’t usually listen to podcasts, but this is an issue near and dear to my heart, and I’m glad I took the time to listen. I too was impressed by your children (your entire family, in fact). My son is an only child, and is socially awkward, for a variety of reasons. I would love to homeschool him, but have not yet taken the plunge because I know that even if I get involved in a co-op, etc, I will never be able to provide him with the number of social experiences that he gets over the course of the day by going to school. If he had siblings or a different temperament, I would have probably homeschooled him by now. And I still might someday; as you said, it’s something we discern year by year. There is definitely no perfect solution; each method has its advantages and drawbacks.

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