Any parent with a heart for freedom and a finger on America’s pulse knows radical changes are sweeping through our schools, leaving many little better than indoctrination centers. Recently, liberty-minded parents have pushed back against these changes, taking over school boards and making their unified voices heard. While we should continue fighting for integrity and diversity-of-thought within our school system, home schooling is one of the most effective ways to unshackle your student from the chains of these conformity factories.

Most Southern Oregon parents got their first taste of “home schooling” over the last year, during Kate Brown’s lockdown, but that dumpster fire of Zoom classes, bad internet connections, tears, and barrels of homework in no way reflects the real home-school experience. That was nothing more than badly executed remote public education.

I was home schooled, and I’ve been home schooling my own children for seven years. One of the greatest differences between home schooling and public education is the lack of synchronous learning, where a single educator must divide their time among a class of thirty students. Synchronous learning is more or less a one-size-fits-all approach to education—an outdated method that fails to maximize the infinite diversity of learning styles among children. As a home-schooling parent, you can tailor your students’ curricula to meet their individual needs, and since you don’t have to oversee the learning of an entire class, you can teach the same quantity of material as public schools in a fraction of the time, while providing one-on-one instruction.

A typical school day at my house includes several hours of textbook work and several hours in our applied-learning laboratory, AKA “real life”. For example, during a fence-building project, my students use their math knowledge to budget for supplies and measure material, then they learn to handle tools and adhere to safety protocols. A strong work ethic and pride in a job well done are organic byproducts of such activities.

Deep discussion is also a mainstay of our schooling. When I hold immersive, idea-exchanging conversations about course material with my students, they better retain the information covered and gain a more dynamic understanding of the subject.

One of the most common arguments against home schooling is the lack of socialization in the absence of a school setting. There’s validity to those concerns, and home schooling is best when coupled with a variety of extra-curricular activities. 4-H, FFA, community classes, church youth groups, kid clubs, and team sports can effectively fill those social voids.

Unfortunately, families in our modern society often rely on two incomes, making it a huge financial strain if one parent leaves the workforce to home school. I can’t offer advice on get-rich-quick schemes or the latest work-from-home MLM gimmick, but I can tell you how my family pulled it off.

We downsized.

Home schooling our kids means we don’t take expensive vacations, we drive older cars, and we live in a modest home. And we’re all right with that. In fact, we’re more than all right. Giving up those luxuries to raise open-minded, well-educated, empathetic critical thinkers is the single best investment my husband and I have made. If we can do it, you can do it, and I encourage every parent frustrated with public education to consider this wonderful alternative.