Utterly Meaningless » Blog Archive » ROOM FOR ONE MORE

    Filed at 9:08 am under by dcobranchi

    Ooh, a new type of entry in the September Is School Month propaganda cavalcade:

    Practicing running and kicking drills last month prepared Alicia Palivoda for the soccer field and for the far more unfamiliar territory of Padua Franciscan High School.

    Until this fall, Alicia, 14, had not spent time in a traditional classroom since second grade. For six years, her mother and others taught her at home. There were no classmates to contend with on athletic fields or in hallways.

    There also wasn’t a basketball cheerleading squad or concert choir, two activities Alicia looked forward to joining.

    “I kind of just wanted to go to a regular school,” she said before the school year began.

    The piece is full of tugs at the heart and subtle digs:

    One of the drawbacks: “Not seeing my friends,” she said. “There were times, especially when I was in the seventh grade, where I didn’t feel like I had any friends. It was really hard.

    And some parents who embrace home schooling find that as their children get older, they want access to more advanced classes and activities such as sports, clubs and music.


    The freedom of being educated at home is what Vinny will miss the most. But he willingly trades that for more regularity.

    “I like knowing that when I get up, I have a set schedule,” he said.

    As high school drew near, both the Palivoda and Mullin families decided it was time to stop home schooling.

    Providing more advanced academics as well as personal development factored in the decision.

    “The mistakes that are made in high school we thought would be better handled out here instead of when they’re away at college,” Alicia’s mother said.


    “The homework isn’t hard, but it’s not easy,” said Vinny, whose alarm now goes off earlier so he can take the Regional Transit Authority to school.

    “It took two days of getting used to. I was expecting plenty of homework and I’m getting it.”

    Alicia’s enthusiasm hasn’t dampened either, despite the homework and the “sprinting” to get to classes on time.

    “It’s still school, no matter how you look at it,” she said. “But I love it.”

    See how easily they became normal, kids? Wouldn’t you like to be normal too?


    3 Responses to “ROOM FOR ONE MORE”

    Comment by
    Andrea R
    September 26th, 2005
    at 10:49 am

    Argh and double-ugh. I just don’t get why a lot of H.E. parents gets their kids to high school level and stop. I’ve seen whole families get their oldest ot high school level and – boom – every kid in the family is suddenly in school.

    Comment by
    September 26th, 2005
    at 7:08 pm

    You’ll note the time of year these interviews come out: just starting and the reality of it all hasn’t sunk in yet.

    Comment by
    September 27th, 2005
    at 3:27 pm

    I don’t agree with the slant of the article, as it makes it sound like the parents had their kids locked up in the house, with no involvement in activities or other children. (Don’t they know about homeschool support groups?!)

    But I think if that is what that family needs to do, it’s okay–for them. I don’t think anyone should feel pressured to do what “everyone else” is doing, whether it’s public, private, virtual, or home school.

    I would love to see a follow-up with the same kids in 6-9 months, just to see if they still “love it.”