(Excerpted from my book, The Homeschooler's Handbook.)

Should implies a value judgment. Is it the right thing to do, the ethical or moral thing? Is it
something you would be in the right to do. I'd go farther, as homeschooling is a huge
commitment you'll be making in time and effort, on your children's behalf. I'd go so far as to ask if you feel that homeschooling is a must, because it can be a pretty hard road.

Some of your friends and family who really don't know much about homeschooling may well
council against it. They will tell you that you're not qualified to teach. (You are, certainly more
than any teacher in a classroom who doesn't know your child from Adam.) They will tell you
that your child won't benefit from proper “socialization”, hanging around other kids at a school.

(To which you should shout “Hallelujah!” More on that later, but believe me, you don't want or
need that for your children, and you can guarantee them a sufficiently active social and creative life that they will be pleased and well-acclimated to the company of others.) Out of loving concern in some cases, they will pile on more arguments. Their arguments will often be
uninformed, but not always. Homeschooling has not worked for everyone. (Of course, those who failed in the past did not have this handbook. Enough said.)

For myself and for my children, homeschooling was a must, and for many reasons. That does not mean it is a must for you and yours. However, these are some of the reasons I homeschooled:

- Safety. The first responsibility of a parent. I did not feel that my children were safe in a school, not be safe in a school. Just open a newspaper.

- The quality of education received. Even though my children went to a fine small private
school, they were not receiving what I would consider a quality education. (Except in the arts,
the area in which I taught at their schools, if I do say so myself.) I thought that both the
methods and the curriculum used were not up to a level that would properly challenge or
educate them. I knew that even then, homeschoolers as a group scored higher in testing across
the board.

- What was being studied. My children are both artists. They and I felt too much time was
wasted on subjects they were not interested in, and that they had no use for then or now.

- Financial. My children went to private school. That's expensive. I largely paid for their
education by teaching at the schools where they attended. That was expensive in terms of
time. I decided that time would be better spent directly educating my own children. Basically,
homeschooling is very inexpensive compared to most options.

- Schedule. The school was a drive, and in rush hour (in Los Angeles), a long drive. School
hours, as is true of virtually all schools, were mandated and enforced. Homework was constant
and enforced. All my kids were doing was school. This did not allow them time to discover
or develop their own interests. I didn't like that at all, and neither did they. And my own
time was, of course, eaten up by teaching there, and driving there. I could immediately see
that homeschooling would, in our case, take up less of my time. As we were homeschooling,
there would be no need for homework. I always felt that 4-5 hours of school was enough if
it was structured well and productive. Homework seemed to me indicative of the failure
of the teacher and the school to get everything done in their alloted time. I saw no reason
then, and see none now, to allow a school to dictate anyone's time based on their own inability
to get a job done.

There were other reasons, but these will, I think, suffice to get a discussion going. There are very compelling reasons to not send a child to school, and to instead homeschool him. Safety! Money!  The subjects and materials the child is studying placed back under parental control! Time freed up for everyone! Not to mention the time spent with my two children watching them grow more skilled and intelligent and knowing I've had a real hand in that! It was an easy call, if a bit frightening.