On Back to School

My almost-5-year-old daughter asked us recently if she could go to school. When we asked her why, she responded, “Because I’ve never been. I just want to check it out.” As our children have complete liberty to chart their own course in life, we couldn’t very well prevent her from going to preschool without coming across as, at best, hypocrites, and at worst, tyrants. And so she’ll go. We registered her last week. Are we excited like every other parent approaching “back to school” time? Absolutely not! In fact, we’re grieving. This is a horrible time for us as parents. We’re hoping against hope that she’ll quickly get her fill and be back before we ever knew she was gone. The silver lining? She’ll get the experience, and decide for herself if she wants to remain with full knowledge that the choice is hers, that she doesn’t have to be there. It’s like a swim class, or a dance class. And besides, preschool is mostly play, anyway, and perhaps she’ll start some relationships along the way. And that’s today’s two cents.


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Founder and editor of Everything-Voluntary.com and UnschoolingDads.com, Skyler is a husband and unschooling father of three beautiful children. His writings include the column series “One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” and “One Improved Unit,” and blog series “Two Cents“. Skyler also wrote the books No Hitting! and Toward a Free Society, and edited the books Everything Voluntary and Unschooling Dads. You can hear Skyler chatting away on his podcasts, Everything Voluntary and Thinking & Doing.