Public or Private? That was Our Question

That moment (that happens over and over again as a parent) when you realize everything you thought you knew was wrong…

You know how it goes.  Before you have kids, you’ve already made your mental list (that’s totally set in stone!) of all the things you’d never do (like “I’d never turn on the TV just to keep my child entertained for five minutes so I can pee in peace.”)… or all the things you’ll only do (until you see firsthand just how expensive organic baby food and organic cotton onesies can be).

DISCLAIMER: The following contains my own honest, humble opinions.  The intention of this post is not to seek advice, sway anyone’s beliefs, offend, or spark debate.  I’m simply putting my thoughts “down on paper” because it’s my party and I’ll write if I want to.  Mkay?

Before we had kids, we figured sending our kids to public school was a no-brainer.  We’re both products of public schools, and have many family members who are public school teachers and administrators.  Heck, in my former life, I was a public school teacher.  I am, in no way, slamming or placing blame on teachers, administrators, or other public school staff.  I am, however, displeased with the brokenness of the school system in general.  Trust me when I say that I get it… I understand that there isn’t one single “right” way to teach children.  I understand that in the public schools, there is an incredibly diverse population in every sense, and the schools must do the best they can to reach the greatest number of students.  I also understand that every few years, the pendulum swings from one extreme to the other with regards to what is viewed as the best way to teach, or even the most important things to teach.

I also understand that sometimes when children go through private school, they can become so sheltered from the “outside world” that the moment they get the tiniest taste of freedom, they go buck-wild.  In a private school, children aren’t often given the opportunity to be salt and light to their classmates and teachers (although it can still happen) because they’re surrounded by those who share and support the same beliefs.  Many people also believe that the academic standards in private schools aren’t as high as those in the public schools, and so we worried that by putting our son in private school, we’d be doing him a disservice.

I understand that all schools, whether public or private, have their fair share of problems.  I understand that no school is perfect.

All that being said, Ryan and I have prayed and discussed, and prayed some more about where to send Ryder to school.  I’ve said before that I’m not very good at picking up on God’s subtle signals (although as I type, I realize that maybe I’m getting better at it… simply a product of developing a closer relationship w/ Him)… I tend to beg politely ask for “billboards” to be certain I’m making the right decision.  And often, once the decision has been made, I’m fearful that it was the wrong one.

Fast forward to Thursday night: Kindergarten Info Night @ Big Valley Christian School (which is run by the church where we are members).  Ryan and I came home relieved and excited… and both admitted to getting misty-eyed several times during the presentation.  I’m confident in the academics.  I’m glad they have extra-curriculars and exposure to the arts.  It’s extra convenient that it’s only a 10-minute bike ride away.  But all that pales in comparison to the fact that our children will receive a Christ-centered education.

Rowdy classroom?  Let’s stop and sing a worship song to calm everyone down.  National crisis in the news?  Let’s pray together for the safety of all involved.  Wondering how to solve that disagreement?  Let’s see what the Bible says about it.  Why is the sky blue?  Because that’s the way God created it… isn’t it lovely?

Seldom have I ever been more confident in a decision than the one we made this week.  Ryder is registered, and in the fall, he’ll begin Kindergarten at BVCS.

I recently started a YouVersion Bible reading plan about parenting.  Every morning I receive a short devotional in my inbox.  Friday morning, I read “Be humble enough to seek God’s guidance, and then bold enough to make a decision.”  Feeling pretty grateful for the billboards we received, and the boldness to make a decision that goes against a cultural norm.


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One Response

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  1. Tawny
    Tawny February 23, 2013 at 3:01 pm | | Reply

    Good for you, mama! Following God’s leading is always te right choice.

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