The Growth of Homeschooling
Over 3 million K-12 students were homeschooled in 2021-2022. The reasons for choosing homeschooling vary by family, but usually include a dissatisfaction with the quality of their public school, a difference of opinion in the content taught to children, the questionable safety of public schools and the belief that more individualized lessons will improve learning.
To view the full article please register below:
The Growth of Homeschooling
Over 3 million K-12 students were homeschooled in 2021-2022, a sharp rise from about 2.5 million in 2019. This makes homeschooling the fastest-growing form of education in the U.S.1
This homeschooling trend reaches across religious, income and ethnic boundaries. For example, 41% of homeschooled families are non-white/non-Hispanic.2
The reasons for choosing homeschooling vary by family, but usually include a dissatisfaction with the quality of their public school, a difference of opinion in the content taught to children, the questionable safety of public schools and the belief that more individualized lessons will improve learning.
As parents consider whether homeschooling makes sense, they should understand its relative advantages and disadvantages.
The Advantages of Homeschooling
Parents who choose homeschooling for their children cite a number of benefits:
- There is greater educational freedom in terms of scheduling, subject matter and teaching approach. For example, children learn in different ways (e.g., visual, auditory, reading/writing and kinesthetic). A public school cannot possibly accommodate teaching to every child’s unique way of learning.
- Education can be structured according to a parent’s values and goals. Parents may value certain topics higher than public school systems, like arts or civics, and can consequently focus on what they deem more important. (We’re all still waiting to apply algebra in our adult lives!)
- Homeschooling avoids the bullying, ridicule or social pressures found in public schools.
- Education can be personalized to reflect the child’s interests and proceed at a pace specific to an individual child.
- It may develop stronger bonds between a parent and child.
The Disadvantages of Homeschooling
Homeschooling is not without drawbacks and challenges, though.
- It’s a major lifestyle change, requiring one parent to dedicate a large share of his or her day toward teaching their child(ren). This can result in a loss of income, greater stress and fatigue, and less time for oneself.
- A homeschooled child may have greater difficulty in socialization absent the public school setting.
- Many public schools do not allow a homeschooled child to participate in school sports or other activities.
- It may be costly to buy the wide range of books and other teaching tools.
- While every parent may be skilled enough to teach early grade subject matter, teaching a range of topics (e.g., science, math, etc.) at a high school level may be out of reach.
- Less outside affirmation and recognition of a child’s accomplishments may deprive a child of confidence-building experiences.
Homeschooling is difficult, but certainly doable. Nevertheless, it requires a full commitment of the parents and children if homeschooling’s full potential is to be realized.
Please reference disclosures at: https://blog.americanportfolios.com/disclosures/