When we were teaching our kids how to read phonetically, we stumbled across a resource that said that there were just more than a hundred phonetic rules for English that works in every case.
They lied. We found exceptions to many of the rules they stated were absolute. Even so, the rules were filled with exceptions and strange, sometimes contradictory, language.
Let's face it. English borrows words from every language on earth, calls every new word it's own, and then attempts to keep the pronunciation rules, but messes it up, so we have a new word with a different pronunciation and a different meaning than the original context.
English speakers are like pirates that steal gold from everyone, dye it red so it can only be used by other pirates, which makes it unusable for most of the world, but since everyone has pirates, red gold ends up being the most used currency, even though it belongs nowhere.
English is both horrible and wonderful. And I'm glad I started learning pronouncing it from birth.