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Why are so many dads reluctant to home educate?

Newsletter · Nov 8, 2021


There’s one question I want to talk about more than any other today…

Your Questions & Answers

“I’ve been homeschooling for 3 years now (my children are 6 and 8), but my husband feels they should go to school…”

A couple of months ago, after being sent a surprising number of questions just like this one, I shared some thoughts in my weekly email. But I came at it from the angle of suggesting we need more awareness and information about home education to give these reluctant dads some data. That we should build, and then hand them, a convincing case for why choosing a life without school is categorically a much better path for so many children.

I still believe that’s useful, but…what I feel most strongly, now, is that the onus should really be on the father to lean into what their child needs. To take on just as much of the responsibility of researching the best possible path through life for their child, and playing just as much of a part in making what is a very important decision.

The problem is, it’s actually incredibly difficult for them to do that.

After digging deep into my own experiences for the latest episode of the Life Without School Podcast (which you can listen to here) I think there are two main reasons for this. First, because they know it will come with a heavy social challenge. With suddenly not being part of one of the most discussed threads of society between adults (especially in workplaces). With having to justify and defend.

And second, because they don’t want to be put in a situation where they might have to re-process some of their own difficult schooling experiences.

There’s a lot that sits under all that, and I talk through a bunch of it in the new episode, but I think – as a dad myself – there’s more I can do here.

If you have one of these reluctant dads in your life (or you are one yourself!), can you reply to this email and let me know? The more personal stories I hear about this, the more insight I can gather, and the more I’ll be able to help these dads break down the fears I know they’re carrying.

(and dads – I really do know, because I’ve been there)

If you have a story to share, please reply to this email. I want to help, and…I truly believe I can.

Talk soon,

P.S. Thank you to everyone who has donated to my work recently! If you’d like to support what I’m putting out into the world, you can do that right here, anytime.

Issy Butson, aka Stark Raving Dad. Author of The Grandparent's Guide to Home Schooling

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