"Next to the right to life itself, the most fundamental of all human rights is the right to control our own minds and thoughts. That means, the right to decide for ourselves how we will explore the world around us, think about our own and other persons' experiences, and find and make the meaning of our own lives. Whoever takes that right away from us, as the educators do, attacks the very center of our being and does us a most profound and lasting injury. He tells us, in effect, that we cannot be trusted even to think, that for all our lives we must depend on others to tell us the meaning of our world and our lives, and that any meaning we may make for ourselves, out of our own experience, has no value."
- John Holt
Today is the last day of Kindergarten registration. I know that I can drop in at any time during the school year and register my child (I think?), but today, my stomach is in knots. Aside from the other things going on in my life, I have this: I am not registering my child for school and I am not sending my child to school.
And I am okay with that.
What my stomach is in knots about is what other people will think, and how other people will judge me or Shane for the way we choose to live our lives.
I have discussed this at length with both Shane and Ron and we have reached the decision that unschooling is for us! When asked if he would like to go to school, Shane said "I want to try it, just once. But not now."
My hesitation, I realize, comes from the fact that school is what is "normal." It's what society tells us to do, it's what people are used to, and I know I am going to encounter people in my life, even in the next little while, who will be criticizing our decision. How do I answer someone in the store who asks "Why isn't your child in school?" What will Shane say when people ask him "What grade are you in?" or "Aren't you excited to be in school now?"
One of my biggest fears is simply what other people think. I know, it doesn't matter, doesn't effect me, or my life.. but there is anxiety there that I will just have to deal with as it comes.
I think... or, perhaps, I know that this experience will be a great thing, not only for my son, but for me as well. For all of us.