Instead of being grouped together by age, which usually leads to "Lord of the Flies" or "Mean Girls" behavior; our kids meet people of all ages through their various interests and hobbies. They help younger children and learn from older children, they have mentors from many different backgrounds, and they become very good at finding common ground with just about anyone. They also have an instant "village" that understands them. No matter your religious beliefs or lack there of, socioeconomic status, or approach, you will instantly bond with many families simply because you're out-of-the-box thinkers that chose to homeschool! It's the ultimate icebreaker!
When I first considered homeschooling, I asked a lovely woman I met through a mutual friend the question I dread now, "But what about those weird Spelling Bee Kids I saw on TV in the 90's and in documentaries?" That's when the epiphany happened! She said, "Did it occur to you that they were homeschooled because they were that way in the first place?"
That friend (who also has children on the Autism Spectrum) gave us the gift of knowing that we could at least give this a try. It wasn't an irreversible decision, there are no educational emergencies, and at worst the year long trial was going to be a fun opportunity for travel, mornings cuddled in bed reading favorite books instead of rushing to get ready for school, and the flexibility to teach my son at his ability level (which is well above grade level in all but writing).
We were already spending hours a day in 1st grade doing homework he hated, I was already homeschooling him in a sense! Wouldn't it be better to use an approach that worked for him so he would enjoy learning? Hadn't I taught him the alphabet, to read, how to write his name, the colors, etc. through everyday life before he began formal schooling?
The decision was made to give homeschooling a 1 year trial and so far we are loving every minute! He is learning so much and actually enjoying it! He's now asking to do things he hated when he was in school and learning so much faster in much less time. This is the best decision we've ever made!