It's getting closer towards a year since J has been able to cope with full time school. He hasn't been able to have lessons in his classroom since before the Easter holidays last year. He is doing brilliantly though, and has come on leaps and bounds. He thoroughly enjoys his one-to-one lessons, and is happy to go around the school on his own delivering messages etc. He did half an hour on the classroom last week (with his TA with him) which is just incredible. We are hoping that he will, before too long, have a statement so that he can increase the number of hours he does, and slowly but surely reintegrate into school.
I've been asked a number of times lately if I have considered homeschooling him. And my answer is always a resounding No. There are a number of reasons why I won't do it.
To be blunt - I don't want to do it. I'm not, and never wanted to be, a teacher. I don't have the patience or the knowledge to provide him with the education that he needs.
I have four children, and there aren't enough hours in the day already. I can't provide enough time to prepare lessons and provide J with an education, whilst still being able to give my other three children the time and attention that they need.
But the main reason is that, in terms of J's long term future, I don't think it would be helpful for him at all. Don't get me wrong, he would love it. But what would we do when he's gets to 16 or 18, and he has been at home with me, and just me, all day every day. However difficult he finds social interaction now, I think that he would find it impossible to cope with if he was home schooled for the next few years. He needs to carry on being used to being around others, to make conversation, to do what his peers are doing. If we carry on supporting him, he can learn the social skills that don't come naturally to him. I can't see how a home schooled J would be able to cope with, for example, getting a job or living independently if he does not continue to be exposed the variety of social situations that school will provide. Being at home with just me all day every day would be unhelpful and counter-productive for him in the long term future, and only serve to make him even more dependant on me.
I think that it is mostly suggested to me because it makes life easier for a lot of people who are currently involved - that is, they don't have to keep trying new ways to get J back to school. If I home schooled him then the problem is instantly solved for them. But for us, it's not an option.