Homeschool or back to School?
By Mommy Pauline P. Cauton, MD
When our family started homeschooling at the start of the pandemic, we didn’t count on falling in love with it. Spending so much more time together, bonding over books, history lessons, Bible stories, and lives of the saints—it soon became more fulfilling than daunting.
But even after the first year, it became clear that not all our kids were taking to homeschooling in the same way. While some kids enjoyed the freedom and flexibility homeschooling offered, that same freedom and flexibility crippled some of our kids who needed the structure and routine of a set schedule.
As we recognized that each child was different and had different needs, we were still reluctant about reintroducing them to a brick-and-mortar school. It was hard to imagine going back to the daily frenzy we knew from before the pandemic—coordinating drop-offs and pick-ups, different schools (girls vs. boys) with different schedules, the kids coming home late in the afternoon (often exhausted, and with no time and energy at the end of the day). We had accepted that we needed to delegate our kids’ education to a school that could provide the schedule and routine they needed, but did we totally have to give up on the perks of homeschooling?
The idea of enrolling our two kids in Antioch School Manila felt like divine revelation. The co-ed set-up meant that both our daughter and son would just be going to one school, with more coordinated schedules. The proximity of the school to where we live reduced the traffic factor. The small class size ensured that the kids would still be seen and heard as individuals, with enough space to address their specific needs and strengths. And the more favorable dismissal times allow for our school-going kids to still have playtime with their homeschooled siblings at the end of the day.
As a progressive Catholic school, Antioch teaches my kids the same lessons that I would have considered a priority at our homeschool, as well as providing the learning environment closest to what I try to create at home. And as far as values formation is concerned, I have full confidence that this is in line with our track at home as well.
Thanks to Antioch, we can get the best of both worlds—the structure at school, without compromising family time and education at home.