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Dec. 7th, 2012

I have a 3 year old boy, Andy, who is bored to death in daycare and we are planning on enrolling him in pre-k for the next school year. His dad and I are divorced and our son's primary home is with his dad in the next town over. We have shared decision-making responsibilities (our state's fancy way of saying joint legal custody).

We agree that Andy should be in a fully accredited school (not another daycare facility) where he can transition to kindergarten and possibly primary school. There is no secular public pre-k or kindergarten available in the town that my son lives in, and since I am not financially prepared for primary parenting responsibilities, he has to live with his dad for the time being. We are looking at private programs. So far the best option, location-wise and financially, is a Catholic school.

I disagree with some of the core social teachings of the Church and I am concerned with what Andy will be learning (at this school, students in all levels have required religious ed and must attend Mass). We both are athiest and plan to give Andy a balanced, fact-based education when it comes to religion so he can make up his own mind about what he believes (or doesn't). So I am really uneasy when it comes to the idea of giving people money to tell my kid that gay people are bad (his uncles are gay), divorced people are bad (his parents and one set of grandparents are divorced), people with children out of wedlock are bad (my sister is expecting her first child soon), you can be a terrible person and if you just tell God you are sorry and say a few prayers you won't suffer any real consequences, God created every single thing on earth and loves everyone and everything except for certain types of people, etc. We both went to Catholic school as children and we don't have very fond memories of it (these were things that we were both taught). It really feels like the only feasible option, though.

Any suggestions from other parents who have been there? Would we be better to wait until Andy can live with me to enroll him in public kindergarten?

TL;DR: Athiest parents plan to send a blank-slate kid to Catholic school because there aren't many other options. Will we regret this?

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