My Daughter Wants to Be Home Schooled.

Updated on July 10, 2009
M.M. asks from Mooresville, NC
18 answers

I have a rising 8th grader and lately she has been requesting to be home schooled. I work full-time and I was wondering if it would require for me to quit work to stay at home and home school. Also, my son who is a rising 1st grader wants nothing to do with homeschooling and would like to continue to go to school. I also have a soon to be 1 year old who will be attending child care in August.

So my questions are:

Do I need to quit work to home school my daughter?
Would it be an issue if I have one child home school and the other attending school?
Any input on this situation will be greatly appreciated. I have no clue about homeschooling and if this is the route I will take, I have a lot of work cut out for me.

Thank you

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answers from Chattanooga on

I homeschooled my 5 children for a couple of years until we moved. The first thing you need to figure out is why she wants to be homeschooled. It sounds like there could be some issues going on maybe at school.

You would not have to quit your job if it is just her homeschooling. My daughter (who was in 6th grade and 11 yrs old) did a virtual school for part of last year before we moved. She had teachers assigned to her for each class that she could email or call and I really did not have to do anything for her. My daughter is very self motivated so it will probably not be like that for all kids but it worked great for us. I was able to focus a little more on the younger children and she liked figuring out her "schedule" by herself and going at her own pace. I would look into a virtual school type program for her if you are going to continue working because otherwise it will take a lot of planning on your part on top of working. If you do it yourself then you have the responsibility of teaching her the new information and checking all her work and everything. The virtual school program does all that for you. My daughter was ahead of her class when she started school halfway through the year and already knew everything they covered for the rest of the year. The one that we used was Florida virtual school and it was free if you lived in Florida. Check in to the state you are in and see if they have something like that.

You can email me if you want to ask anything further of me.
Good luck with your decision,

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Memphis on

You don't have to have both or neither kids in home school -- it is perfectly acceptable to do one of each. Some parents are able to successfully juggle homeschooling with working -- you may be able to get video teachers which your daughter watches by herself. Be aware that it may be more difficult for you and her to continue education this way -- she may be tempted to pretend to watch the videos, and you may be tempted to shirk the role of administering the tests properly -- but it can be done.

Still, I would question why she wants to be homeschooled -- there may be more to this than meets the eye, and it needs to be investigated whether or not you h/s. For instance, are kids picking on her at school? Are guys making inappropriate remarks or touching her? Are teachers being mean to her? Is she lonely or does she have friends? Does she feel like she's not being educated -- that the teachers are not meeting her educational needs? Does she have some learning disability that she is trying to hide? -- All those questions need to be pondered and answered (plus more that I haven't thought of) -- to make sure that you and she are choosing the right thing for the right reasons. But you can take a year off public school and see what happens; and if she doesn't like it at the end, you can put her back in school then. It doesn't have to be an all or nothing thing.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Greensboro on

Hi M.,

There are so many ways to home school these days....It's actually just become every alternative to public or private school :) My teenage girls use a program called Switched on Schoolhouse from We've done many different curricula and I've found this one is best for where they are currently and there is a lot less supervision needed. If your daughter is self motivated, this might be an option for you. Check out the website. She will probable complete her schoolwork in much less time than a normal school day (my daughter's spend about 4 quality hours a day) so ask yourself if she will have too much time on her hands at home alone?

There are also online schools that are considered "home-schooling" but have a teacher and interaction with other students but everything is done from the computer at home. If you're interested in something like that I'd have to get in touch with friends for more info for you.

To your second question: I have several friends that have children at home being schooled, one in public school or even classes at private schools. That's not an issue. Homeschooling is all about doing what you think is best for the individual child.

Homeschooling is a big responsibility but sending your child somewhere else to be schooled is as well. Whatever you decide, you are accountable for your child. Whatever you decide to do, you're in charge. My girls are 13 and 17 and home schooling has been very good for them and our family as a whole. It's been a lot of fun as well....

God bless!


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Nashville on

The beauty of homeschooling is that there is so much flexibility if you need it. You could try it out for 1/2 of a school year at least, and if it didn't work out, she can go back to public school.

I homeschool my two elementary age girls and LOVE it. I love being right there with them and doing projects and field trips, along with the schoolwork. Ideally, you would be there with her, and can quit your job to do this. Maybe you could cut your hours down to part-time? You could have her do the more intensive schooling on your days off, or when you get off earlier.

It could still work out with you continuing to work full-time, though, if a number of factors work in your family's favor.
If she is mature for 12 years old (she should be 13 when she gets into 8th grade, right?), she could do her work while you are at work. The night before you could plan her curriculum, and go over anything she may not understand either that night or in the morning before you go to work. If she is the type of child who is a self-starter and doesn't need you checking up on her to make sure she is really working, this could work. She could also look after your 6 year old when he gets out of school (she could pick him up at the bus stop and babysit until you get home). This could be a great chance for her to show how responsible she is and what she is capable of. You could even pay her a small amount for the babysitting after school if you feel that she deserves it; however you may go by the family philosophy of everyone pitching in and not necessarily getting reimbursed for it). It will be a lot of responsibility for her to do her work on her own, then watch her brother until you get home, but she may be very capable of it, and enjoy it.

On the other hand, you may be reading this and saying, "I just don't know if she could handle it". You may find it overwhelming to go over her school things in the evenings, as well, with an almost 1 year old who needs your attention then.

That is a tough call. It definitely depends on the maturity level and personality of your daughter. Yes, more will be demanded out of you than if she were in public school, as well, but don't you think she might need help with her homework if she were in public school anyway? If she makes As without much help needed from you, you may find that she does very well at home without you.

Your biggest task will be getting her curriculum in order and creating a schedule/calendar of how much needs to be done each day/week/month. If she falls behind she could end up in a bad place scholastically. She may surprise you, though, and do very well, even farther ahead than you thought. You should know your daughter and what she is capable of.

If it doesn't work out after 1/2 a school year, put her back into public school. Something tells me that if this is something she really wants, she will make it work.

I have to add, is there something that might have happened at school to make her want to be homeschooled? Middle school years are tough and there can be social bullying and other issues at that age. Or is she just bored and understimulated at school, or perhaps doesn't feel like she relates to others well. If that is the case, you must help her deal with those issues by talking with a counseler.

But those are understandable reasons for homeschooling and I know families that have taken their daughters/sons out for social reasons and it changed their world for the better. But don't ignore the issue (if there is one).

I pray that you make the decision that is best for your family. God will reveal the answer to you by how peaceful you are with your decision.


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Louisville on

Hi M..
I am homeschooling my two daughters this year, 10yo and 7 yo. My oldest has been begging me to homeschool for at least a year or longer. We can no longer afford private school and I feel like the Lord is leading us to homeschool. I will still work 2-3 days a week. I would suggest you search your heart, weigh out your options, pray a lot and go from there. I have heard so many ways that people homeschool that its not even funny. I never dreamed you had so many options. There is a Switched On Schoolhouse by Alph and Omega that she can do on the computer. There is a ton of curriculum out there. She may do well independently, if so, you don't have to quit your job. I know people who work 40 hours a week and homeschool. Not sure how, but they do. If your daughter feels that strongly, you probably should and you wont regret homeschooling her or all of them for that matter. They tend to do better and have less pressure on them by peers. I have all kinds of friends who said they teenagers were withdrawn, depressed, wouldn't leave their room, wouldn't talk and stated one day that she could no longer go to school, she needed a different option because she was miserable. They do correspondence courses for high school and she is a totally different young lady. More outgoing, talks to her parents and is a much happier young lady. Our kids need us, that is true. I really feel like you wont regret your decision to do it but do what you need to. Noone can fault you for wanting what is best for your children. My youngest wasn't jim jolly thrilled about homeschooling but now seems excited at the prospect of not being put in a box per say and gets to do things differently and meet new people.
God bless you. If you need anything, please do let me know.
W. in Sellersburg



answers from Knoxville on

You can check with the Home School Legal Defense Association(HSLDA) They have info for all states for requirements. Some states you have to register your child annually by a certain date, if you go past this date then you have to pay penalty fees. It is hard to do both work and educate a child. Some states require college degrees to teach your children at home and also require that you do not work during specific hours outside the home.



answers from Jackson on

I taught school for 8 yrs and now that my boys are getting into school age years I am going to homeschool. Don't listen to anyone tell you what you should and should not do. Homeschooling is an important desicion that should not be taken lightly. I have seen great models of homeschooling and I have seen parents give their child a workbook and assign pages each day and thought that was education. Just like private schools and public schools there are the good ones and bad ones. Homeschooling has come a long ways and the neg rap it has gotten in the past is slowly vanishing. Your child can get a great education homeschooling if you are willing to put in the effort. It is a big responsibility. Here is what I suggest...

1. First try and find out why your daughter wants to be homeschooled. Just listen to her and see her point. She could be having peer issues at school or issues with some teachers.
2. You don't have to quit your job completely or at all. Is your daughter mature enough to be home alone and study on her own? Are you comfortable with your daughter being home alone period regardless of her maturity level (safety reasons)? Maybe you can find a compromise.
3. Check out homeschooling Co-ops in your area. We have one that meets twice a week to offer classes I would not do at home and to offer extra help in subject areas. Some will even provide the curr. so you won't have to find one yourself.
4. Pray about it.

It is a big step. I hope you find what you are looking for in your search for homeschooling.



answers from Raleigh on

As a psychotherapist, I have to agree that more investigation into her request is warranted. Middle school is tough and the thought of going to high school in just a year can be scary. My daughter, now 13, had a horrible first part of the school year due to the pressure from one "friend". This had been going on for over 6 months and I had no idea. As for homeschooling without leaving your job, you have to ask yourself if you want to work with her for 3-4 hours a day after you get home from work. Also, who would be with her at home while you are at work. Studies show teenage kids are most at risk for inappropriate behavior between the hours of 2 pm and 6 pm. No matter how "mature" you think she is, no 12 or 13 year is that mature. Their brains have not developed to where they have good impulse control or can predict the consequences of their actions. It's unfair to put a child in that position for that length of time. I wish you luck.



answers from Lexington on

Homeschooling is very flexible. You can practically do it anytime anyplace. So, no, I don't think you need to quit your job. Also, it is possible to only homeschool one of your children if that is what is best for each of them. I suggest checking out Please email me if you have any other concerns!



answers from Louisville on

M., I first want to say I think it is AWESOME that your 8th grader wants to be homeschooled. Something is going on and sometimes there isn't much you as a parent can do about it. Have you asked her why she is wanting to be homeschooled?

I homeschool and although each state differs in the area of Homeschool Law.. you can find out more here... go to your state and find the laws, policies, support groups etc....

I have a son who is 20 and went to public and private schooling and my daughter who would be going into First but we are actually going to be schooling in the 2nd grade (she is an accelerated learner-lots of one on one ;) but I can honestly say I totally can see the difference and for us it is better for us to homeschool. :)

I think if you want to Homeschool and at least if your oldest is requesting it.. go for it, if you enjoy being with your children... as far as your younger one, who is going into First grade, I think he shouldn't be able to make the decision as he isn't old enough to know what is best for him.. as you are the parent, think about how much $$ you would be saving if you didn't have to put your baby in childcare.... ;)

I do work... PT some weeks I work 3 days and some I work 4.
I work primarily on the weekends daylight this way I can still have some family time and sometimes I will work once a week in the early evenings say 4-10 or 5-9.

You live in one of the most awesome homeschooling states!
You don't have to send your child to school or have him/her registered until they are 7 years old, you do have to do standardized testing and they will be tested in area's such as Spelling, Math, English Grammer, and Reading. They have to be schooled for at least 9 months with reasonable holidays and vacations (the norm per say)

The great thing about HS is that you can chose your curriculum and there are a lot of options... tons of catalogs and used curriculum places such as VegSource, HSLDA, some areas have HS book stores... Rainbow Resource has a million and one options the book/catalog is as thick or thicker than most phone books. :)

Curriculum comes ala carte per say where you can mix and match what works best for the child or as a curriculum set where everything is included. There is also DVD's available for teaching if you are not strong in a certain area... etc...

I would highly recommend going to HSLDA and learning things regarding your home state and getting plugged in with support groups in your area.

Do a search for homeschooling in NC... also if you go to there is a entire message board devoted to homeschooling and you will find your state represented there along with homeschooling Middle and High School, HS girls, the list goes on and on even including what curriculum you are using.

Here is a list of things and I just googled Homeschooling support + North Carolina here are the results.

M. as always remember to do what is best for YOU and YOUR family even if that means it differs from the "norm" or what other people want you to do.




answers from Charlotte on

Parents should "rule the roost" in their home. NOT let children make important decisions. As a retired public school teacher I am never in favor of home schooling. If you have a college degree and really enjoy studying and teaching, it might be all right. But if you give in to your daughter's request she will keep having ideas about what SHE wants. She probably would persuede you to be taking her places constantly and never be happy to sit home and study and really learn.
So many I have seen who home schooled, did not have much education themselves and did not produce any smart children.
Prayers and best wishes for you and family.




answers from Chattanooga on

i personally think all children should be in a normal school. Having one's children home 24/7 can be stressful plus school is a great way for kids to interact. I know my 4 do alot better where they learn alot more than what they would at just home


answers from Memphis on

I have 5 children ages 11-24. I have homeschooled them all, the 1st 2 graduating from homeschool and the last 3 didn't enter public school until 2005. We are down to 2 children at home now.

I have seen some single mom's work and homeschool but it was a struggle. They were exhausted and torn between their child's education & their jobs. Personally, I feel if you want to do a good job of homeschooling her, then you need to quit your job or if possible, switch shifts. You can even see about going down to part time, school in the mornings, work in the afternoons. You can look for local support groups or education coops for homeschoolers too. I found our children really enjoyed participating in a homeschool coop. We met Friday mornings for 12 weeks in the Fall and 12 weeks in the Spring doing classes such as Drama, Art, Music, Spanish, Latin, Algebra, and Science. It put them under someone else for a while, got them around other kids (don't get me wrong, I don't think homeschoolers lack socialization skills) and they throughly enjoyed the after school activities we often had.

What are her reasons for wanting to be homeschooled? Some kids are better suited for homeschooling I understand that and I've seen mixed families where some are in PS and some homeschool and it works out well. I am currently homeschooling our youngest again and have a daughter in ps high school.

There were times our oldest son didn't want to have anything to do with homeschooling either, however, we felt it was in his best interest to do so. It wasn't up for negotiation just like bedtimes, meals and types of programs they watched or TV or on the internet. We would discuss with him his reasons or struggles and we often worked them out for the better.

You and your husband have to agree on this, he needs to support you. He needs to be the 'principal' of your school in a sense. He can't just sit back & let you do your homeschool thing, he needs to be an active participant as well. My brother-in-law took over the teaching of the higher maths to my nieces. He would come in from work, eat dinner and they would work on math. It worked very well for them as my sister-in-law didn't feel confident enough to do it. But there is SO much curriculum out there, and lots of help for even the most math challenged.

SO in conclusion, LOL...
*find out why she wants this
*is she willing to be obedient to you as a teacher and put in the work needed
*is your husband on board & will he participate
*are you able/willing to quit you job and do this for possible the next 5 years
and lastly
*have you prayed about it (if that is your faith)

Best of luck to you. Homeschooling can be so much fun. It will give your daughter a chance to explore things she may be interested in but lacks the time to devote to it too.



answers from Nashville on

I think if your daughter who is entering the 8th grade suddenly wants to be home schooled you need to ask questions and get to the root of the issue. Why would she choose to do this when she is always attended public school. I would hesitate to uproot my life for this if there is no good reason for the change other than she wants to do it. Children get bored with the same things and maybe she wants a change. At her age, it seems to me she would want to be with her friends when they are beginning to socialize.

My husband is a public school teacher (36 yrs) and I am not a big fan of homeschooling, but I do think there are underlying problems with your daughters change of heart.
Dig a little deeper!



answers from Nashville on

I don't know much but I do know that homeschooling is much less time than regular schooling. I have a friend who does it and they only school from 8 am till noon. Then the rest of the day is theirs to do field trips, or just play and do crafts. You could possibly do this for 4 hours in the afternoon but what is the time you get off from work?

Also, as far as what to do? I have heard that there are so many books out there that tell you what to do and curriculums for you to follow exactly. There are also programs for you and the child, their are group field trips, and now kids can even play sports.

Good luck in whatever you do. You may try getting to the root of why your daughter wants to be homeschooled and maybe that can be fixed instead of you needing to homeschool.

As far as your son, I think it would be fine not taking him out of school if he does not want to. I have heard of some families doing it that way but I would wonder later in life if one got a better education than the you giving the one a better education. :o)



answers from Louisville on

you need to find out why your daughter wants to be home schooled. their maybe something going on that needs to be addressed. i did home school for a while it didnt work too well for me but i have severe add. their are programs that you can do online mine was out of CA but their are groups in each state. do some research you may not have to quit your job. whatever decision you make will be the right one for your family.



answers from Huntington on

Hey M.! It's totally okay to have one child in public school and another one learning at home.

You would definitely have to quit your job to stay home with your daughter. It's homeschooling, not self-schooling. I was homeschooled 2nd - 8th grade and loved it, but my mom was a big part of my schooling. You have to participate in projects, prepare lessons, grade papers, meet up with other homeschool families for field trips, sports, social activities, etc. You also need to be available to help her if she has questions or doesn't understand something. The nice thing is that it doesn't take all day like public school. I think the average school day is about 3-4 hours, not including those days when you have scheduled activities outside of your home.

I think homeschooling is great and I will definitely consider keeping my son at home when he gets to that age. Let us know what you decide to do!



answers from Nashville on

I think you need to delve into her request more. That is an age when girls, especially, want to socialize and be with other children. Why the change of heart? Has something happened at school?? Good luck and God bless.

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