Friday, 16 March 2012

In the march

I had a bit of a flubber there and thought I'd missed most of March. It's a month I used to ignore and just let pass by without comment and with relative indifference. These years it's a month I feel fond of. A liminal month, not quite winter and not yet summer. Perhaps it's spring? Perhaps not. March, in short, is me personified. I'm here, and every year I'm different. Some years I'm raring to go and full of the joys of, and other years I want the duvet pulled firmly over my aching head.

This March, this year, I keep seeing potential everywhere. I see potential spring. I note the graceful beauty of snowdrops competing with the divinity of daffodils. I watch as the barren brown branches of winter burst into brilliant blossom. I thrill to the colours enhanced by the return of the sun. I feel like a spring lamb, leapy and joyous, and all things are possible it seems.

I think the difference this year is that I 'get' home education. It's the very breath and pulse of freedom. It's the sheer exultation of learning. It's the bounce and leap of doing your own things and watching your own things getting better and better and more and more.

A friend quizzed me last night on how my child will get into university. "But has she done A levels?"

"She's done a certificate that equals three A levels."

On her face there was blank incomprehension. How could one vault over A levels? How could one do a University course to prove one is ready to - er - do a University course? Wouldn't a person who didn't fit the pattern, who wasn't made to measure, be unacceptable?

No. A university will offer a place because the people there have reason to believe that the student is capable of studying a course and is enthusiastic about that course.

If any university turns down a student on grounds other than those criteria... Well, would a bright-minded, independent thinker actually want to waste time there? Would you?

We have to go to school. No, we don't.

We have to 'do' exams. No, we don't.

We have to follow our dreams, respect our natures and our talents. Yes, we do.

And, if all else fails, there's the University of Life from which we - sooner or later - will graduate.

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