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Going Public: Your Child Can Thrive in Public School Paperback – April 1, 2008

4.6 out of 5 stars 58 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

DAVID PRITCHARD is a nine-year veteran of Young Life youth ministry, currently serving as area director in the south suburbs of Tacoma, Washington and as camp manager of Young Life’s largest summer camp. Kelli Pritchard has degrees in secondary education and in social work. Together, the Pritchards are the parents of eight children, have been influential in the lives of dozens of other young people in their home, lead weekend parenting conferences and are co-founders of a community action group to work for improvement in the local school district.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Regal; 42117th edition (April 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830745777
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830745777
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #618,989 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I grew up attending Christian schools all the way through grad school and always had a "fear" of the public school system. Nevertheless, before having children of my own, I taught in the public junior high for 6 years alongside my husband who continues to teach in our local middle school. Over the years, we have observed several Christian students in the public system remain strong spiritually, morally, and academically based on family approaches and beliefs similar to the Pritchards'. (Sadly, MANY of my Christian school classmates have walked away from the Lord in their adult lives or have compromised in some way.)

Now that I have two young children of my own, I knew I needed to prepare for the possibility that we would not afford a Christian education. Reading through this book, I received MUCH more than advice on how to help my children survive in public schools. The Pritchards give biblical counsel, practical tips, and helpful "catch phrases" on how to train children FROM INFANCY ON into strong, godly, healthy adults.

They use the challenges their children face at school as a means for training their kids to face the challenges of this world. While advising the reader on what key areas to focus on in developing their children's character, the Pritchards weave in godly counsel regarding everything from unfair grading practices and classroom distractions to bullying, persecution, and sex ed.

Be warned, that the Pritchard's counsel is based firmly on biblical principles. Readers who tend to cater to their kids or to make excuses for rambunctious behavior might feel some conviction at their straight-forward talk. At the same time, it is clear that they have a playful, loving relationship with their kids...just one balanced by authority and respect.
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Format: Paperback
I'm a 15-year veteran of public school teaching in some of the country's toughest middle and high schools, and I now have a preschool-aged child. Needless to say, it's not easy, having seen what I've seen in public schools, to make decisions about where to send him to school. (In fact, the same week I was reading this book, I was deciding which pre-school--public or private--to enroll him in.) The main thing I'm taking away from this book is that I don't have to make decisions about my son's education out of fear. God is big enough to be God even in the public schools. It's so easy to be paralyzed by fear when it comes to making decisions about our kids' futures, and we might miss out on what God could do in those situations. I can say this with no naivete about what's really out there, because, beleive me, I've seen almost everything when it comes to public education.

I especially appreciated the authors' emphasis on teaching children, from an early age, the key concepts of loving God, obeying, and using self-control. They also do a beautiful job describing the relational focus that I want to create in my family.

I highly recommend this book to parents who are looking for alternative to a fear-based approach to their kids' futures.
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Format: Paperback
I am so happy I found this book! As a former homeschooler, I can honestly say I appreciate the information in this book. Our children are now attending a "struggling" public school. I'm so proud of them and the lessons they've learned, how they interact with others, and the respect they show their teachers. God has blessed us with wonderful, caring educators who truly want the best for our children. We had to discontinue homeschooling because I had cancer and had to have treatments. I'm terribly disappointed in the number of Christians who wrongly try to twist Scripture to say that ALL parents should homeschool because it's in the Bible. I'm also tired of Christian parents who believe it is their duty to "remind" us that our children won't be as bright as homeschooled children, nor as godly. Sorry you feel that way, but our children are doing fantastic! They have straight A's and are very grounded in their faith. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU David and Kelli Pritchard for this book. I believe God is bigger than public education, what we (as parents) teach our children is the most important thing, and that our children CAN thrive in public school.
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Format: Paperback
There was a time when homeschooling was a very lonely place to be. Perhaps in some contexts it still is. In today's Christian circles though, at least the circles I've been exposed to locally and across the continent, it seems that homeschooling has entered the mainstream and for many families is now the default option. Speaking from experience, as the father of 3 children who all attend local public schools, I can attest that public schooling can be a very lonely place as well. Not only that, but there is little guidance for those of us who have chosen to educate our children in this way.

I recently came across a book titled Going Public, written by David and Kelli Pritchard, who together have raised 8 children, all of whom attended public schools. This is not a book that is anti-homeschool or anti-Christian school. The purpose is not to convince you that you ought to place your children in the local public school. Instead it seeks first, to show that your children can thrive at public school and second, to provide a parent's field guide for helping them do just that. In this way it fills an important niche.

What the Pritchards do is simple: they allow us into their home and family, telling us why they made the decision to public school and then showing us how they have gone about it. It's not like they public school out of ignorance. To the contrary, they do what they do out of conviction that this is the way they can best raise their children in the fear and admonition of the Lord. That word "fear" is important to them. Following Proverbs, they say that the fear of the Lord "is the foundation on which all learning, all knowledge-gathering, all schooling should be built.
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