Letters — January 22, 2024


We can support both homeschool and Catholic schools

I always look forward to reading about Catholic Schools Week in The Catholic Virginian, but I wish there was some acknowledgement of another Catholic school option, Catholic homeschooling.

Homeschooling has grown by leaps and bounds in the last few decades, but especially since the pandemic.  While statistics on the benefits of homeschooling are readily available, Catholic homeschooling specifically allows families the opportunity to live their faith as well as learn together. Catholic homeschooling may not be for everyone, but anyone can do it.

As stated in Vatican II document “Lumen Gentium”: “The family is … the domestic Church.” As Catholic homeschoolers, we can easily incorporate our faith in daily living and in every subject we learn. We can choose a method of learning that works for each individual child, whether that is classical education, Charlotte Mason, Montessori, unschooling, or an eclectic combination. We have ample opportunities for field trips, social events, extracurricular activities and even family vacation trips because we are not tied to a traditional school calendar.

I support my local public schools because that works for many families, and I support Catholic schools as well, but I wish the Church would be more supportive of families that homeschool. Unfortunately, homeschoolers are often met with suspicion that they are undermining traditional Catholic schools – nothing could be further from the truth.

Catholic homeschoolers are some of the greatest supporters of our local parishes; we are available to serve in many ministries, not just on Sunday but during the week, we attend daily Mass, and are involved in youth groups, religious education and other parish activities.

There should be more collaboration between Catholic schools and Catholic homeschoolers. That would be a win-win for everyone and would truly celebrate “Catholic Schools Week”!

— Mary Ellen Bebermeyer, Smithfield


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