Private Christian School vs. Free Public school

Barbara - posted on 02/18/2009 ( 35 moms have responded )

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I have a 20 month old and a 6 month old. They are still in daycare, but my husband and I are already thinking about this. Many of the children from my church attend this private christian school that I hear a lot about. It seems great! They play instuments, they pray, they even teach thee kids the word of God along with other academic subjects. However the cost is about $350 a month. I would love to send both of my children when they are of age but is it really worth the money? Should I forget the idea and let them attend public school? Is the education just as good?

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Rebekah - posted on 03/19/2012

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I believe this is something you and your husband need to pray about and ask for God's guidance. He is the one that knows best where your kids should attend - will they be the leaders in the public school system with a great faith training at home or do they need to be ingrained and doctrinated within a school that shares your family beliefs or will God call you to homeschool? You have time to pray and ask God about this, not to mention you'll begin to notice when your kids get older what they will need and what they will not need. Seek God, not other people - this is a personal choice for "your" family.

Trina - posted on 03/18/2012

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i have two children a 17 yr.old and a 13 yr. old who has been in private christian schools most of their life. while my son has done 2 yrs of public school , my daughter has not completed a full yr with a couple of attempts. I have had horrible experiences with the public school systems. I think it does depend on where you live but over all i think private is the way to go. While it can be very very expensive i have decided to sacrifice and do without for it because the enivoriment along is well worth it and most private schools teach kids on a higher level than public schools.

Sandra - posted on 05/04/2009

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Hi Barbara, I have two kids that have had Christian education in a private Christian school. For us our oldest, who is now in university, started in the public school up until grade four. We decided to provide him with a christian education only after we were disappointed in how his school (at the time) was unwilling to deal with a prejudice issue and use it as a learning opportunity for all. He loved school at the beginning but started to loose interest because of how he was being treated by the kids. It was unfortunate, but after he was enrolled in the Christian school things turned around dramatically because he couldn't believe how kind the children were how accepting they were. He started loving school again and did very well. He got on the honors roll and stayed there until he graduated; from high school that is. He also attended a Christian high school. It was very expensive for us but we thought it to be a well worth sacrifice. The schools he attended offered tuition bursaries so that was helpful. Our daughter who is now 12yrs old, attends the same school that our son did and just loves it and is doing very well. Don't give up on the notion of sending them to a Christian school; maybe they offer bursaries: that's something you could look into. Give it to God in prayer and He will have an answer for you when it is time for them to go school. God Bless you and hope this was helpful.

[deleted account]

Here's the thing about school- once your kid starts going they will never be the same. In the early years it is not too bad, but by grade 3 the peer group becomes more important than Mom & Dad. So you want to ask yourself what kind of attitudes your kids will pick up at either a Christian school or a public school.

I was a private school student, my kids have been in private, home schooled, and in public.

My opinion differs from others in that I believe if you have a good Godly-education foundation and a strong faith, then by high school your children should be ready, willing and able to fight off the ungodly attitudes that are so pervasive in public schools.

We live in a Christian, Bible-belt community, and the same stuff goes on here as everywhere else (within the teen population).

We have no Christian H.S. here, and I wanted my kids to have practice in facing the troubles of the world BEFORE going off to college, so they are (or were) in public H.S.

Sooner or later, they have to face the world and they need to do a little of that while they are still at home with parents to guide them.



On another note, my son has had no homework this year, gets all As & Bs, even in his dual enrollment College Level Biology class, so I have to say that some of the classes are not challenging enough. Some, not all, and he is taking the highest level of classes that are available. I'd rather he have homework each night because that helps develop a good work ethic and without it kids can get a little lazy.



Also, don't assume that just because a school is Christian that it is academically challenging. The ACE (Accelerated Christian Education- or "School of Tomorrow") is used by a local Christian school and the children who decide to leave there and go public find themselves a year behind. We tried that for two months before we went back to homeschooling.

Bottom line is that you have to find what will work best for your family.

Sometimes it comes down to spending $ for Christian school vs. having a family vacation, or $ for homeschool curriculum and having only one income vs. having both incomes but fearing that you are not doing what is right for your kids.

Only you can make these decisions, prayerfully.



Think on this: you can't take $$ with you when you die.

You can leave it in a will, but it can be stolen, or go for taxes.

What we DO leave behind us when we die, our legacy (no matter whether we die monetarily rich or poor) is our children and what we have taught them.

This is a legacy that lasts forever because it is passed on from generation to generation.

You can't put a price on an eternal legacy, and doing everything we can to teach our faith, the Gospel, the Bible and how to live out that faith creates that legacy.

We do our part, God does His.

"“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be."

Sarah - posted on 02/18/2009

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My children are in public school and so far my only complaint is that they don't learn about God. The academic standards are not always as high in public school but we have been so blessed with wonderful teachers that allow our children to grow academically. They are able to participate in music programs as well as outdoor activities, computers and extra programs for gifted students. While a Christian education is ideal, it is very expensive. We have five children so it is not even an option for us because of the cost.



My opinion is that it's my job to teach my children about God and I do that when they are home with me. While it would be wonderful to have my teachings reinforced in school, I think I would use it as an excuse to not do it myself with them because someone else is while they are at school. There are several resources for bible lessons at home. Not only will it be a bonding experience between you and your kids, it will serve as an example to them that their faith is important to them and you. Also, you will learn some stuff too.



 



That being said, it is a decision that has to be made between you, your husband and the Lord. It is a big one, make it a prayerful choice and it can't be wrong.

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Carla - posted on 03/19/2012

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This is an old post, but there seems to still be a lot of interest, so we will leave it open.



Two of my grandchildren go to a Christian school, free tuition, and one and next year the other one, go to a charter school that is value-based, again, tuition free. Having been to each school, I am very impressed with them both, and am thrilled my children have been able to take advantage of them. My own children went to public school because alternatives weren't available then unless you paid high tuition, but I wouldn't send them now.



Do some checking around to find a charter school, or pray about home schooling. With the internet almost anyone can home school, academic-wise. It takes patience and commitment, but the results are well worth it



God bless, all

Linda - posted on 03/18/2012

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Unfortunately, I can probably guarantee that not 1 in 100 Americans know the Battle of Hastings or that it was fought in 1066! For that fact, what with the pathetic state of education in some of the public schools here, it has been discovered that few American students even know in what CENTURY the Civil War in United States was fought--let alone 1861-1865.

Angela - posted on 03/18/2012

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Linda, I go to bed late when I don't have work the next day! It's currently 3.40am.



The Battle of Hastings is the one bit of UK history you can guarantee EVERY British adult and child knows!



It's very impressive what you've managed to teach your kids and yourself. I'm a lidelong learner, I still like to learn new stuff at the age of nearly 54 but I'd be rubbish at teaching it.



I try a bit of informal teaching with the disabled adults I support at work but it's not easy. I daresay I have more success than some of my colleagues but many of our clients have learning disabilities and most of what we're teaching them is lifeskills and independence rather than "booklearning".

Linda - posted on 03/18/2012

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Angela, you must get up very early over there....and I go to bed too late! :)



It is not as hard as you think to do a good job educating your children well. You really need to teach your children to read...and then teach them to teach themself! I could have taught my son Calculus since I have a degree in math....but he didn't need me because he taught himself! Also, there are MANY resources at least over here. Homeschool coop groups help teach some high schoolers science or math or foreign language. I personally use an internet-based Christian school for the classes I have a hard time teaching....mainly foreign language and some advanced sciences. Furthermore, after educating four boys at 13 different levels for 16 years, I am much more educated than when I began! I always had a good grasp of English (since my mother was an English teacher), and math....but I have a much richer understanding of history than before. Growing up in public school, they never really taught much over here before 1492 when Columbus sailed the ocean blue! Now, I know about ancient Greece, and the Peloponesian Wars, Charlemagne, the Middle Ages, the Battle of Hastings, etc, etc, etc. Homeschooling has been an amazing adventure for me, and I've loved the extra time with my kids. My oldest will have his Master's degree next year at the age of 21, and my second son was just accepted into a very prestigous college in the Mechanical Engineering division!

Angela - posted on 03/18/2012

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I know it's perfectly legal over here to homeschool your kids, but not many do. The number you quote isn't a large number at all. I've never tried it myself, of course, but always wonder how children get a balanced education from parents who for the most part aren't qualified teachers yet would be required to train kids in between 7 and 12 subjects to pass at GCSE level? Especially when the subjects might well include a modern language, a science subject and mathematics. From the standard of spelling and grammar I see on most of these online forums, most parents aren't even fit to teach English - not to a standard where a 16 year old would pass an exam, anyway!



Your sister's children must have varying needs and all be quite different from each other to all be educated in different ways! I really admire her approach - I guess it must work for her family or she wouldn't stress herself with all that organisation & effort.

Linda - posted on 03/18/2012

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Angela, you might be surprised to learn that there are between 20,000 and 100,000 children who are homeschooled in the UK...and it is completely legal there. In the US, we have well over 2 million children homeschooled. Studies have repeatedly shown that homeschooled students perform better on average than either private or public schooled students. In fact, colleges are actively recruiting homeschooled students now. That being said, homeschooling is clearly not for everyone. Each parent must pray about what is right for each individual child. My sister homeschools one of her children, sends another to public school, and a third to a Christian school! I homeschooled my oldest child from kindergarten through high school, but I only homeschooled my second son through 8th grade, and he finished high school at the public school. However, they were two different children with different temperaments, different levels of spirituality, and different educational goals. Each decision was right for that child. I am still homeschooling my youngest two, who are in 7th and 9th grade. And you're right--this is a very old post!

Angela - posted on 03/18/2012

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This is quite an old thread!



In the UK, the only Christian Schools are faith schools that are particular to certain denominations. The vast majority of these are Catholic schools. Quite a number of Christians (of different Protestant denominations) choose to send their kids to Catholic schools! I would never have done this with my own children, I very much disliked the Catholic schools I was sent to.



In the UK "public" schools are called State schools ("public schools" are actually something quite different in Britain - this is the name given to well-known fee paying schools like Eton, Harrow, Marlborough, Rubgy & Winchester - just to name a few!!).



My own kids went to State schools. Our local primary school (for children aged 3½ - 11 years) had a lot of children from Muslim backgrounds but collective worship (school assembly) was Christian in nature. Christmas and Easter were recognised and observed. Many schools also celebrate "Harvest" and the children gather their gifts together and present food parcels and hampers to elderly, disabled or poor people. In areas such as our where there were sizeable proportions of Muslim people, local schools also celebrated "Eid" one of their festivals. Generally children do not get enthralled by the feasts or celebrations of another religion. But all Christian children were pleased to attend the Eid party - just as the Muslim children attended the Christmas party. Kids like a break from lessons and enjoy a party atmosphere where there is lots to eat and games to play! One Christian friend kept her kids off school when they had an Eid party. Another Christian friend donated food she'd baked herself at home for the Eid party.



Without wishing to sound intolerant or prejudiced, I believe many religions (outside of Christianity) are simply a list of "dos and don't" with a few customs thrown in. The "followers" of such religions don't question anything and just obey - it's more of a culture than a religion and I honestly feel that people don't hold these beliefs strongly and sincerely in their hearts - it's just like a tradition or a custom. I personally believe that having a religion should be about having a heartfelt relationship with the deity you worship. This is why I'm suspicious of people who suddenly convert to a new religion because they happen to have fallen in love with someone from a different culture which insists marriage can only take place if both partners have the same religion. It's just like carry out a few customs, perhaps wear a certain type of clothing and attend a certain place of worship - and hey presto! You're the newest convert to that faith - whose existing followers believe your conversion is genuine! But I'm going off-topic here ....



In the UK, it's very frowned upon to home-school your children - hardly anyone does so and those that do are subject to regular inspections from the Local Education Authority and also from representative from central Government. Not many ordinary families can meet the grade, Our state schools are usually more than adequate and most people are happy with these.

Trina - posted on 03/18/2012

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Oh and just a thought, down here most public school teachers have their kids in private schools

Tricia - posted on 05/11/2009

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My husband and I pondered with this as our 5 yr old is graduating from preschool this week. We needed to decided whether to keep her in the Chrisitan school where she attended preschool or send her to the public school. My husband is a pastor and therefore we have taught her since she was 2 yo about God, but we want her to be in a enviornment where we know she is recieving a good education as well as daily recieving the word of God.

Delisa - posted on 05/11/2009

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Something else to think about regarding public vs private schools is the basic underlying agenda of the school. Public schools nowdays don't just not allow prayer, etc. but are actively trying to teach that God is non-existent/irrelevant. Even basic history classes have rewritten the textbooks to take out the faith of the founding fathers, the faith of Christopher Columbus, and any other historical person who believed in God. Our country was founded upon the Christian faith, but you won't find that anywhere in public schools now. Since a majority of a child's learning comes from sitting in a classroom for many hours each week, do you want that continual bombardment of anti-Godly viewpoints every day, or do you want them to receive many hours of Christ centered viewpoints every day? We send our 3 children to a Christian school for this very reason. Public schools may have great instruction (as well as Christian schools do), but what good is a "free" education or "better" education if they are swayed by the ways of the world and don't end up following God. Peer pressure is a huge thing for kids, especially teens. For us, it is not even an option to send our kids to public schools. I would rather have less money than to have my kids be lost to the world.

Crystal - posted on 05/08/2009

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you have to weigh the pros and cons. im in the smae boat. i would love to send my kids to christian private schools, because they will be around other kids whose families hopefully share the same values. and the school is centered on Christian based teachings. however it is going to be $300.00 for me a month. public school is free, but schools now are so much more different then when we were going! I know in some schools, in some states they are trying to get elementary students as young as third grade, sex education!



in the end, you still are the parents, and it comes down to you and your hubby to teach your children about God. I heard my pastor once say" if you are a father you are a minister, if you are a mother, you are a minister. Even if you are grandparents, you are ministers." because it falls to you to teach your kids. Just pray about it and God will show you what to do!

Tam - posted on 05/07/2009

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I have been exposed to almost every type of schooling out there and my own preference is homeschooling.

That said, it's not for everyone and only you, your husband and God can determine what will work for your family.

I suggest you pray and seek God's direction. If He wants your children to attend private school, He will make a way. If He has a purpose for them in public school, He will let you know that too. And if you feel led to homeschool, He'll be there with patience and wisdom for you all.

So, pray and pray again.

Pamela - posted on 05/07/2009

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Personally, I wouldn't put my young child in public school. We live in Florida and the schools in FL are horrible. The cost is worth it knowing they are being taught the truth instead of some politically correct mumbo jumbo. Private school children are years ahead of their public school peers scholastically. To me, it's a no-brainer but you need to pray about it and make your own decision. Take care!

Heather - posted on 05/04/2009

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I think that public schools are great for teaching our kids to witness. They get to learn that the world doesn't all follow God, but that it is our job to share with them. It is a great spiritual learning ground. We do our best to teach them biblical matters at home and church, it is good for them to get a chance to use those truths. My oldest is only 6 but he loves telling his friends about God.

Jennifer - posted on 05/04/2009

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As a former elementary school teacher I want to first say that in 10 years of teaching I only worked with 2 teachers I would absolutely refuse to have my child be in thier class. My problem with public school does not fall with the teachers or the curiculumn (for most districts) it falls with the politics and the administration. There are many many restraints put on hard working teachers that directly effect the children in the classroom. For instance if a child is physically acting out that child can not be restrined, you must stop all learning and remove the rest of the children. Or things like testing, a child could of mastered something but each semester the teacher must spend time testing every child because it must be formally documented. And I can go on and on. So my personalchoice is too homeschool my children until middle school so I can give them a good foundation in everything our family holds important, values and academics. We will find a private school for middle school as a way of easing them into the public system for high school. I agree with Juli that if you have grounded your child in Christ that by highschool they will be ready to stand on thier faith and it gives them a trail run with a safety net (you) before they go to collage. I also think the resources that public high schools can provide because of finances are invaluable, all sorts of class options, all sorts of technology, alliances to earn collage credits etc. As far as affording tuition I first am praying that God provides, second we are already saving (starting on first bday), and third it is a priority for us so we sacrifice other things. I am a big believer in what works for your family won't work for another family though!!! I am just sharing so you can have perspective. You obviously value education and that is a great place to start!

Rebekah - posted on 04/28/2009

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Usually Christian Schools use the Beka program which is WAY better than what is taught in public school. They actually teach phonetics and kids have a tendency to read better. You should check into the school and see how they teach and what program they use. Then compare by going to the public school in the area. Then pray and ask God what is best for you.

I've already done this and my son is almost 8 months old. I'm going to homeschool until 3rd or 4th grade using the Beka program then switch him into a Charter school, because unfortunately the recession in this area is hurting our Christian schools. But really I don't want the school teaching my children about faith, when I don't agree with some of the rules and legalism that is placed in the Christian schools in our area. I will teach my child about God, the Word, and be the example for my child. The Bible is specific that it should be the parents raising the kids in the way they should go - that doesn't say the church, that doesn't say the school, it belongs to the parent. Church should be a reinforcement/supplement to what is taught at home.

Tonjia - posted on 04/27/2009

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I am a mother of 4 and found the Private schools too expensive and the traditional neighborhood schools not to be up to my expectations. SO.... I found a little elementary charter school (only charter school) in my city. I love it and now I am developing a middle/high charter school in the same city for my children to continue the same basic concepts they are experiencing now.

The charter school I am developing is publicly funded (free tuition) so we can not have religion but we can have character development. We can teach the children common values - like honesty, kindness, responsibility, respect etc. They can learn community service-civic duties. The curriculum is Classical education so it will teach the students to think for themselves not to just accept what textbooks or teachers tell them.

If you are still interested you can go to my school web site to find more about the classical education method www.excelsiorprepcs.org. Then research more about methods and types of education that are around your area. Also look into The Core Knowledge Foundation. They have a wealth of information for elementary education. That is the resource my kids are using now and I will be using in my middle school. They have an awesome program.

Always ask God to guide you - That is how I found this path I am on now. But that is a whole other story.

Make sure you fight for your child's education. Don't just let someone teach your child. You are your child's best advocate. The education they receive today will have to benefit them the rest of their lives. Make sure it is a good one!!

Julie - posted on 03/31/2009

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I found this to be an interesting question.  My husband and I never really considered a Christian school because we wanted to be saving for college.  We found a National Heritage Academy Charter school where we lived (Michigan) and loved it because it was started by several Christian families and most of the teachers there are Christians.  However, they still could not pray in school or read the Bible.  They did say the Pledge of Allegiance every day.



We then found ourselves moving to Indiana where we didn't know anyone.  I told my husband that the only way I would feel comfortable switching schools was to find a Christian school.  The main reason for that was without knowing anyone here, I did not know which school system was the best for public schools.  My husband could ask around at work but he would get many different answers.



God blessed us with the ability to pay for Christian school and I believe it is well worth the cost.  I don't not believe that our kids will be "perfect" because they are at a Christian school and that the problems  you find at a public school you will probably find to some degree or another in a Christian school.  With that being said, it has been amazing watching my kids learn a new Bible verse every week, hearing the Christian worship songs that my kids will sing around the house is such a blessing. 



The biggest advantage I believe is when we see reports about the books that kids are being required to read in some of the public schools.  Two specific books I heard are about life style choices.  A prince that falls in love with another prince instead of the princess and two boy penguins that fall in love. 



For those who are wondering what direction to go, you really need to  just pray about it. God will show you clearly the direction He has for you and your kids. 



It will be fun to hear your thoughts and how you feel God is leading you.



 



 

[deleted account]

Do not worry about tomorrow, it has enough troubles of it's own. My little paraphrase that I like to remind myself of. God will direct you, but He doesn't promise to tell you now what you need to do in 4 years. Pray and He will direct your paths. 



We thought we would do public school, however by 1st grade it was evident that my eldest needed homeschooled, something I was "never" going to do. God showed me what I needed to do and he has provided the means and ability. Now I homeschool my 2 oldest (of 4) and next year the third will join us. We are loving it and when I start worrying about my ability to teach them (in higher grades) I remember my little paraphrase from above. 

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My twin girls are in 2nd grade in a public school.  My honest, simple opinion.... it depends on the school. 

Sarah - posted on 03/31/2009

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that first sent. is suppose to say if you "have" a good public school... ha ha opps you can tell how well public school works!! JK

Sarah - posted on 03/31/2009

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Honestly, if you a good public school in your area and your child in surrounded in God' love at home and in church you should be ok. My daughter is in public school and we love her school and her teachers. We have family that pushes us to put her in private school all the time. We do plan on putting her in our church private school when she hits middle school though. 6-12th we do not want her in the public school system anymore. My husband went to priavet christian school his whole life and I went to public school and am a public school educator. We butt heads sometimes on the issue because I respect public school teachers more than him ;-) ha ha but honestly it comes from the home and your teaching of God. Your children will get a good academic education in public school and you always be the leader in the spirtual growth.

Barbara - posted on 02/19/2009

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To be honest, I really don't see myself homeschooling. I will be going back to work this year and I'm still in school myself. I also enjoy having a little time away from the children during the day. Lol

Barbara - posted on 02/19/2009

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I thank of all you for your opinion. We are still praying about it and have not made any final choices yet. I do definetly plan to do my part in teaching my children about Christ, and I do also plan to be very involved. I always knew I would be the type of parent to keep the communication lines open between the school staff and my husband and I; whether the children attend public or private school.



The reason I think this is so important to me is I always went to public school, and I considered myself a pretty good student and child. However I see my siblings (who are not saved) and other teens and it scares me. The young people of this generation have no fear of God anymore, they seem not to care. Even before I was a christian I atleast had that fear of God, that respect. I just want my children with that. I think once they have that, no matter what they can always find their way to the right path - which is to develop their own personal relationship with God when they are of age.



I don't know, maybe I'm over thinking it. It's just very important to me that my kids have their own experiece and relationship with JESUS. I've seen so many of my loved ones miss out. And I think private school will help create the foundation.

Linda - posted on 02/19/2009

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Have you considered homeschooling? You might think that you can't do this, but you should at least ask pray about it. You also need to investigate your public schools. They are not all created equal. In general, I would say you would get the best education with homeschooling, then Christian schools, and lastly public schools.

[deleted account]

Hi Barbara,
My husband and I are in the same situation. We have a 3 yr old and a 1 yr old. We are very hesitant to send them to public school but the cost of Private is expensive. I feel that if the Lord wants our children to go to a private school, he'll will then have to provide the means to have that become a reality. Who really knows how are nation will be when our children are of school age. As long as we continue to seek Him, he'll direrct us to the right choice for sure.

In His Love,

Jamie Simon

Brooke - posted on 02/18/2009

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It really comes down to your own beliefs and priorities regarding your family. I am a product of public, Christian and home school. I have a good take on all options. My husband is a product of public and Catholic school. For our family, the only 2 options are either home or Christian. We were both exposed to such ungodly garbage from other kids in the public schools. Saying that, not all "Christian" schools are much better. They tend to allow discipline problem kids ,who are expelled from the public schools, into the Christian schools. We are sending our daughter next year to our church school. It is a covenant school. At least one parent has to be born again to attend the school. The school partners with the parents to train the children in godliness. This is what works for our family......pray about what the Lord would have for your indivual family. Many blessings.....

Sarah - posted on 02/18/2009

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I think it all comes down to what God's plan is for your children. I agree that he provides for all of our needs, but I think that is different for everyone. We are a family of seven living on one income and I am a full time student trying to get my teaching degree so we can make ends meet. I would love to put my children in Christian school but the Lord has given me peace about putting them in public school. There is no way we could aford a private education for them- and I am okay with that. It just has to be a disicion that you make with God's guidance.

Pamela - posted on 02/18/2009

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I went to a Christian school for my high school years, & my mom was a teacher there. It was awesome to my deveopment as a young adult. I went on to a Christian College.

I have 5 boys who have all gone to Christian school up to gr. 9. Then we sent 3 of them to the public high school. What a regret that was!!! (Our Christian school does not go up to the High school years yet.)We still have 2 more in the private school.

Christian schooling is definately worth the Money & sacrifice to root them in the Word of God! It is such a small window of opportunity to ground them in their faith.

God has always provided for us & has fulfilled every need we have ever needed. We are a single income family of 7 people & we have always had the money to pay their tuition... God will provide!

Coral - posted on 02/18/2009

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I agree with what Sarah Lee wrote.  I am a product of public school (up through 8th gread) and a product of private shcool (high school).  I feel the education material was comprable I feel as though I got more attending too with my private school.  The classes were smaller and the teachers seems more concerned about each student there than in mu public school experience.



I highly recommend going to your local schools and meeting the principals and some teachers if you can.



It can be a tough decision so I say take it to God and keep talking with your husband about it.  Just keep talking.



Good luck.

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