Even when pregnant with my son in 2001, I dreamed of homeschooling. I started the Sing, Spell, Read and Write early learning program when he was 4 and we both loved it! But life had other plans as I was not able to afford to stay home with him for Kindergarten. I was blessed to find a wonderful charter school in my area of Northwest Houston that had an incredible academic program and truly encouraged parental involvement in the classroom and at home. When he was in second grade, we moved to Nederland and were somewhat pleased with the Highland Park Gifted and Talented program he was placed in. We loved his teachers, but the large class sizes were a draw back. For fourth grade, we tried Vista Academy and again, he had a wonderful teacher. Unfortunately, Vista grew faster then their facility could keep up with and fifth grade wasn’t going to be an option for us due to the exceptionally large class size anticipated, so we went back to NISD. Central Middle School was our breaking point. While his teacher was wonderful, the class size was again very large and he was bored out of his mind. I could see that he was beginning to shut down and hated going to school. Then we found Vanguard Classical Academy.
Vanguard is a non-denominational Christian, classical, university-model school that offers students a Christ-centered college-preparatory education. The school is basically a hybrid of homeschooling and private school and the curriculum is based on the classical Trivium.
On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, Caleb attends school on campus and on Tuesdays and Thursdays, we “do school” in our PJs from our living room. As a certified High School English teacher, I can speak with authority that the curriculum at Vanguard is the most academically rigorous of any school Caleb has attended or that is available in SETX. And the best part? It’s customizeable! For 6th grade, I added several courses that I knew he would enjoy to our normal Tuesday/Thursday schedule that enriched his already challenging workload. Because they weren’t “required” classes, we could work at our own pace on these classes and really enjoy them.
And the concern about class size? How does 6-8 students per class sound?! It was so wonderful to have teachers who were REALLY in tune with Caleb’s strengths and weaknesses who had the TIME and heart to meet him where he is and help him grow! As a busy entrepreneur, I honestly don’t think I have the discipline to homeschool full-time, so Vanguard is the perfect balance we needed! For more information about Vanguard, visit their website at or their Facebook page.
– Yvette Griffith