My name is Asim.
I studied physics at university, became an investment banker in London for several years, and moved to Malaysia over a decade ago to become an entrepreneur.
At university I met my wife, Isabelle. She graduated in classics, trained to become a lawyer, but then became a Chartered Accountant, then tax consultant, then a designer of some incredible villas (she’s incredibly intelligent!).
We have 3 kids, Maryam (born 2004), Danyal (2006) and Sabeen (2008).
Until late 2013, our kids had a normal school education, just like their parents. In fact, if you told me up until mid-2013 that you homeschooled your kids I would have thought you were nuts.
But by late 2013, I had convinced Isabelle and the kids that we should give homeschooling a try. They all agreed.
Today the kids have become near-conversant in 5 languages. Maryam achieved five A*s in her IGCSE’s (UK 16+ exam) when she was 12, Danyal and Sabeen each managed three A*s by the time they were 10.
The elder two then finished their A-levels (UK 18+ exams) aged 13 (AAB) and 11 (AA – including becoming the youngest person ever to have achieved an A in A-level Physics, aged 10). Maryam is currently doing further A-levels to get into university where she’s planning on studying French and Arabic, while Danyal is working at the company I run, Jibble. Sabeen, 13, recently achieved two A*s in her A-levels, Maths and Accounting, is about to do her third, Physics, and hasn’t got a clue what she’ll do next.
Danyal, who is the only one that really enjoys sport, plays football at a fairly-high level, and the girls enjoy anything from a bit of swimming to debating to self-defence depending on what phase they’re in.
The kids are happy, have many friends (though not as many as most schoolers), are confident and sociable.
My home school journey has led me to believe that the modern education system, that I experienced the very best of, is completely messed up – so messed up that I no longer insist my kids go to university. Sure, if they passionately want to become something where a degree is required – e.g. a doctor, lawyer, investment banker – then yes, university it is, but otherwise it’s up to them.
In this blog, I explain why I decided to home school my kids, the journey so far, and why I think modern education desperately needs reform.