Hi there, sorry for the late reply - tough and long day... I aint running away... (yet).
, I sympathise with you. I have been the total outsider all through my school years, and I have no friends from that time. I don't mind bumping into some of them on the street (not that that would happen), but all my friends
are from university. I can still remember the advice from one of my high school teachers who told me not to do anything stupid right now (I was 16), but to sit it out until university - 'there will be people who think like you'. It was a revelation, I can tell you...
To everyone who gave a thumbs up for homeschooling: You betcha I would have loved to be (home) schooled in that ideal model you describe! In fact, I know one homeschooled person in real life. His father is an artist, couldn't be bothered to settle down for long enough to get the boy into school, so it was DIY. The boy, well... with all that extra curriculum activities... went on to become professor of computer science at MIT when he was 23. 'nuff said about your ideal model.
However, I think for this model to work, there must be a good match in both the teacher and the pupil. I think the best teacher cannot convey anything to a pupil who is unwilling to learn, and the worst teachers won't stifle the interested one (Lucy's a wonderful example for the last).
I am quite positive that my family was not interested in the least in my education, as long as I'd get good grades (to be boasted with). The choice of schools for me was based on 'she'll go get a job afterwards'. Hence, we had primary school - middle school (not gymnasium) - high school focused on economy (not gymnasium, it would still have been possible), and I had to promise to get a job right after university
I wonder if things would have run differently if I hadn't been so immensly bored at school (despite teachers who would do their best, like giving me an undergrad math book to read in high school)...
In the end, I have the same opinion as Nadine
: I think going to school is important, as it will teach you so many things that you might acquire much later when being homeschooled. Socializing with others has been mentioned, but also independence comes to mind here as mummy is not always there... As much as I hated (high) school, without it I think I would be even more isolated (my family was not very social either..).
Do I think education is important and do I want the best for my kids: You betcha!
Even so much as to invest extra time and money in it: YES.
Do I think that I would be able to provide the best education for my children, if I had to do it by myself? Given all the aspects of it, NO.
Besides, I think you can only change a system you're involved in. And taking all the top players out of the team is not going to improve the ball game. If you don't like what's happening - complain/fight/do anything to change it. But you have to be right in the middle of it to do that...
Thanks for having me socialize with you..