I can’t imagine what heaven will feel like when we have truly finished the race, but I feel like I tasted a nibble of it when I finished the homeschooling journey with both of our boys. Now my role has changed to providing as much support as possible for those Christian parents who choose home education now. For whatever reason, God has given me a deep love for parents who home educate and their children.
My husband, Phil, and I started homeschooling back in the summer of 1994 after a yearlong debate over whether to hold our oldest son back in starting school or whether to put him in public school kindergarten a month after he turned five. Our solution was to homeschool. I figured if I “ruined him,” I could enroll him the next year as an older kindergartener and they could “fix him.” We had such fun that first year that we never looked back. In the beginning we homeschooled on a year by year basis, but eventually we knew we were committed to seeing this venture through to the end–graduation!
Along the way, for fun, we joined ECC aka Enrichment Classes of Carrollton, an all-volunteer homeschooling co-op. Shortly after joining their board, I realized God was asking me to start a similar co-op in Plano. N-Tech, a Plano all-volunteer homeschooling co-op, opened in September 1999, and continues successfully today. I stepped down in the spring of 2007 as director when my youngest son was a sophomore in high school although my N-Tech friends continue to be a blessing beyond words.
In the spring of 2006, I suddenly woke up in my home one day to find the Threadgill Homeschool was no longer flourishing. Somewhere along the way, my two boys had grown into men who weren’t responding to mom’s direction and teaching as enthusiastically. In August 2006, THEO opened with 80 students taking classes three days each week from a local Church’s classrooms. THEO was founded as a ministry owned 100% by the Lord although my husband and I were listed as earthly owners. In May 2017, THEO converted from a privately-owned business to a 501c3. Big legal status changes, but I continue to serve as THEO Director, an employee of THEO Christian Solution, Inc..
THEO didn’t have as gentle a start as N-Tech, but I believe it is because THEO has grown faster than anything we ever saw at N-Tech. Our vision for N-Tech was never more than 100 families. Only God limits our vision for THEO. After the first year of renting space from a Church, THEO moved into our own rented space–4,477 square feet–at Custer and 15th Street, just one mile north of the George Bush Tollway in August 2007. In August 2013, we moved into an 11,000 square foot building in the same shopping center to expand. Now we provide educational services for almost 600 students.
My heart will always lie with my family and my two sons; but since those two sons are now pursuing their own adventures, my husband and I have more time on our hands. We feel the Lord is leading us into work with homeschooling families. We know the journey of home education isn’t all about baking bread and reading to kids in our family bed–although we have done plenty of both. Homeschooling is hard work for both parents. We want to rise up a new organization that will encourage homeschooling families in tangible ways, so they persevere to the end and so that more and more families have the confidence to jump into homeschooling because they see resources are available to help them along the way.
We are not homeschool evangelists. I am not out to convert anyone to home education although I am more than willing to talk to them about how our family educated our boys. I have always believed that homeschooling is a calling from the Lord. I have honestly recommended people not homeschool if they didn’t feel that call. It would sort of be like going to a foreign country as a missionary without God’s blessing, only because you thought it sounded like fun.
We are not homeschool purists. I don’t believe each family must homeschool independently at home with just the kids, parents and books–although I believe there are families who are called to that method of homeschooling. Our God is infinite. He has created each of us to be unique, and thus, each homeschool will be different. For that reason, I am not in competition with any other support group or school or co-op. They are all necessary, just like it is important for us to have different Churches where we find a place to worship in a way that fits our beliefs and our genetic code, so to speak.
If THEO is for you, then great, jump in and join. Welcome to the family….but if not, no worries. There are many great resources in Dallas– from RHSA which has been around for longer than I have….to N-Tech, PATH, MArCH, CERC in Rowlett, HEAR….and many more.
One bit of news, I developed and presented “Homeschool, Who Me?” to prospective homeschool families since 2001. Soon we will have that loaded to theo.solutions under events and seminars for you to watch from the comfort of your own home. The 90 minute presentation provides the nuts and bolts, available resources, and practical advice that makes homeschooling a viable option for almost any family. The material and presentation help ease the transition from the current educational environment to home education. Check the “THEO Seminars” page on our web site.
In addition to Homeschool Who Me?, watch our Fear Not! Homeschool Through High School Seminar at the Events and Seminars tab at theo.solutions. There are eight youTube vidoes there with voice over powerpoint to address transcript questions, scope and sequence, testing and more.
Finally, I want to thank you for visiting our THEO web site to learn more about THEO. Homeschooling is a journey, but never fear, the path is now well marked by those who came before us to clear the way. Anything that connects parents closer with their kids is a wonderful thing. God speed to you each….and one last piece of advice….if you too have a summer birthday child, hold them back…why would we ever rob ourselves of one more year with our children at home?