Private school. Home School. Unschool. What school?

Summer school. Home School, Unschool.

There are so many terms for "school" - public school, private school, homeschool, unschool - and all of these options are available as people want to find a setting and at times an approach to help their child learn in the best possible way.  

But is it more than that?  

Is 'school' about your child's overall ability to navigate the world of people their size and bigger?

Is it about learning social cues and finding friends that fit? 

Is it about trying to stand out when everyone wants you to fit in?  
Is it about finding out things about you that you didn't know before? (such as new strengths)  

Knowing why you are selecting a 'school' for your child is more of the question. 

School, for me, was a double edged sword. Without it, I would have never known I was good at running or drawing. I may not have the friends I do today.  But with it came shame and hiding about what I couldn't do (which of course I want to change as we speak louder about learning differences) 

When I worked with kids in the school setting for 20 years, I saw progress some students were making at school that they weren't making at home (parents saw it too) but the opposite was true as well.  

I also worked with children in private schools and homeschool and the answer wasn't in the setting or the approach -- it was about knowing what your child needed and put that in front of them.  It was more about understanding how they learn to provide the right tools and strategies so they could see progress and their learning abilities. 
To view the public school as a bad fit for kids that learn differently may not be completely accurate.  It may be more about our views and approaches.  

The setting is important, but the setting alone doesn't offer all the answers. 



Susan Schenk