Yes, you have heard it I''ll bet, and I have as well. Too many times to mention in fact, and often from people in church. They ask, how will our children be able to interact in the world if they don't go to school. Now, this assumes that you need to go to school to be able to interact with others, and suggests that the school is not just for education.
First of all, you need a decent education to be able to get a job at the end of the day, and recent reports have shown that schools are even failing that, as the Tesco, and Morrison's bosses found. However, that aside, when schools are asked to explain why there is a trend to poor social skills in school leavers, they blame the parents. Ha, it is the parents who are responsible for this. Interesting, eh? See, that is it from the moment the child is born, the parents interact with the child. The child learns to smile, and picks up his/her first language from the parent. It is parents who teach them table manners, politeness, etc. We reward positive selfless interaction with other children, and siblings, such as sharing toys, sweets etc. They won't be able to make friends as easily, if they don't learn how to share, and regard others' feelings, and it is us as parents who teach them that.
School can be at a disadvantage here, as children are grouped according to age. The problem is, group a bunch of five, or seven year olds together, and you are not going to help them get on with all age groups. They are more likely to pick up negative behaviours, especially being immature.When I was in school I had a few friends a couple of years younger, and the teachers reported that this wasn't ''normal'' How so? In the real world my friends are by no means even close to my age always. I haven't even mentioned the Christian aspect here of children learning things which are clearly unbiblical. When children are not arranged by age group I have found that the older children will have a positive influence on the younger children, and it helps them to mature in the right way. (That is indeed if the older children have been brought up well.)It also helps older children exercise nurture skills. The peer-age bias is diminished, meaning that children are free to be individuals , and not to feel that they have to do a, b, and c to fit in. How is wearing a certain brand of clothes, listening, and following certain celebrities positive? Children should be able to express individuality, not follow the crowd.
This is where the Christian element comes in, as ''Blessed is the man who walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly.'' Ps 1
Why on earth would Christians need their children to be educated by non Christians to ensure that they are to be successful? If the school that we would send our children to teaches things contrary to the Bible, and/or promotes ungodly behaviour, then why would we want to expose them to that negativity?
One of the major benefits of home education is that children get exposed to all age groups, and make lots of different friends in different places. I think we have made more friends, and met far more people home educating, than we ever would of had if the children were in school.
When I was in school, I remember just mixing with the same people all the time. Ironically, I didn't really learn to interact well with others till I joined the church. I was shy, and being thrown in the deep end helped.
So, remember, we are equipped for this! It doesn't take a ''professional'' to teach these things, though I may need the help of a rocket scientist if my children decide to visit the moon. :-o