Monday, March 28, 2016

Homeschooling Facts

Last week I was at our local public school. Two of my children take speech there. As I spoke with a woman who worked there, we began talking about my job history. I told her I was a former teacher.

"Oh well now the homeschooling thing makes sense. If you are a former teacher than I am sure they are getting a good education."

This bothered me. Yes, I am a former teacher, but the truth is, many homeschooling kids aren't being taught by former teachers and are still thriving.

Are there exceptions? I am sure. But statistics still indicate that homeschooling children do as well or better than their schooled counterparts.

I wanted to provide some facts surrounding homeschool children. Please note that by doing this I am NOT saying homeschooled students are superior to those in school. I am instead saying that we are at least equal. And if we are at least equal, than judgement as to the quality of the education should be dropped. Homeschool parents are doing something that is legally acceptable so to have to hear comments about their ability to educate their own child seems unnecessary. 

Number of Homeschoolers Growing Nationwide

  • Since 1999, the number of children who are being homeschooled has increased by 75%. (7 times faster than the numbers of kids enrolling in K-12 school every year.)
  • Homeschooling students score between the 65th-89th percentile on standardized assessment exams (in comparison to the average score of 50th percentile by schooled counterparts.)
  • There are no achievement gaps (difference between sexes, income levels, or race/ethnicity) in homeschooling children as there are in non-homeschooled students.
  • It costs $500-600 per year to educate a child each year at home (compared to $10,000 in school.)
  • Homeschooled students matriculate and attain a four-year degree as much higher rates than their schooled counterparts. 
  • There are about 2.3 million home-educated children in the USA. 
  • Percentage of homeschooled children is growing 2-8% per year.
  • Homeschooling is growing rapidly among minorities. 15% of homeschooling families are not white.
  • Homeschooling children are demographically widely varied. There are athetists, Christians, Mormons, convervatives, liberals, and members of all financial groups. 
  • Homeschool students score 15-30% higher on standardized academic achievement tests. 
  • Black students score 23-42% higher.
  • Homeschooled students are typically above average on measures of social, emotional and psychological development.
  • Homeschooled students are regularly engaged in social and education activities outside their homes with people other than their nuclear-families.
  • Participate more frequently in local community service, vote and attend public meetings more frequently, 
Again, please note that I am not writing this article to in anyway say that homeschooling students are superior. I really do not think this is the case. The smartest child in America may be from a public school or a private school or a homeschool. The least smartest child could come from any of these environments as well. What I am instead sharing is that we are doing an acceptable job and judgment should lesson!

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