Well, just to let you know . . . two interviews down and no place to go. The one congregation we were excited about selected the other candidate and the other congregation that has expressed their intention to extend a call we have our reservations about. Now we need to figure out what is next. We can't see settling just for a "job", but now we don't know what happens. Jay has spoken with the bishop to share our concerns and now we wait . . . AGAIN!!!
This has not been as easy as I think we thought it would be. When Jay received the assignment to region 3, I started the footwork to learn as much about the state, the state home education laws, the opportunities for homeschooling in the state, etc. So, then after he received the call telling him western ND, I familiarized myself with that part of the state. I even got on Yahoo Groups to try and connect with homeschoolers in western ND. Then in mid March when the bishop gave Jay the three locations, I began putting feelers out in those areas for homeschool support groups, co-ops, resources, email loops, etc. to try and obtain as much info about each area as possible.
One area had absolutely nothing that I could find. Fortunately, that congregation removed us from their pool of candidates because they too could see it was not a good fit for our needs, stating that family is a huge part of this Call. One area had support groups, co-ops, resources, tools, activities, and opportunities. The other, I was told, too has things but I could/can not find it. So, we knew one area was definitely feasible for our needs, but we kept looking in the other area so we could make a decision down the road. For over a month we struggled with the "what if" . . . "What if the one congregation didn't extend a Call and the other did? Meaning the one with the smaller community and the less than visible opportunities, could we make it work?" So for over a month we have tried to figure out that "what if".
Here we are, the "what if" is a reality. It's a struggle for me because I want the kids to have the same things they have here. I want them to have a co-op where they can attend classes on a weekly basis. I want them to be able to attend field trips, outings, and gatherings with other homeschoolers, a group of their peers. I would like them to be able to continue their instruments with private lessons. Cassie would love to continue her voice lessons and taking acting classes and participating in productions.
The one communication I have had with a homeschool mom indicated that they have a once a month meeting geared towards the early grade school/preschool age children which leaves my kids without that social aspect. Evidently it's hard to find a music instructor for private lessons so some homeschoolers use the music program at the public school. As well as the older students use/take classes available in the public school. To me that defeats the purpose of homeschooling. If we are going to have to use programs directly affiliated with the public school system then why bother homeschooling? Which, at this time, is one of our main priorities as a family unit. We all want to continue our home education.
The bishop has asked Jay to discuss with him more of our concerns. He has also asked Jay and us to take this time to pray, to discern, and to consider this Call. He said he is not going to force Jay to accept this Call, but in the same breath he says he has no other openings/options for him at this time. I guess the bishop doesn't understand . . . we have been praying, discerning, discussing, evaluating and we still feel like it is not the right place.
Sorry I was rambling, but I just wanted to update you on our current conundrum (as my husband would say). Trust me I could have shared waaaaaay more because there are waaaaay more issues/concerns, but I spared you. LOL