First of all, let me be clear. I have no expertise in the area in which I’m about to write. This post will be pure speculation and curiosity on my part.
This post came to me after I read a few blogs, spoke to other moms, and admitted to myself this concern of my children not meeting grade level status.
How important is this infamous grade level in school that we parents have been convinced is so critical?
At both the beginning and at the end of the school year children undergo testing, and we parents are then handed results. The lucky parents get to heave a sigh of relief when they get the news that their children are succeeding at or (whoo hooo!) above grade level. They get to do the “my kid is smart and that means we’re really good parents” happy dance. On the other side of the room, however, the parents that get the report telling them that their children *gasp* fall below grade level are doing the “my kid is not as smart as the other kids which mean we’re shitty parents” mope. They don’t dance. They go home and
feel like jumping into the nearest hole start researching alternative education methods.
When my children were in a part-time school program, they were tested. I got to experience (sort of) both sides. The first year, R was above grade level, but by the second year he had begun to fall below. And I’ll tell ya, it doesn’t feel good when your kid isn’t with the educational pack. We all want to know that our child is “where they should be” in school.
This is our first year of homeschooling full-time so my children don’t get tested anymore but there is still the worry of “are my kids performing as well educationally as other kids in their grade?” Especially when we get around public school kids. Not all homeschoolers feel that way, mind you. For all I know, it’s just me (but I don’t think so).