homeschooling. Educational researchers, in fact, are expecting a surge in the number of students educated at home by their parents over the next ten years, as more parents reject public schools.
A recent report in Education News states that, since 1999, the number of children who are homeschooled has increased by 75%. Though homeschooled children represent only 4% of all school-age children nationwide, the number of children whose parents choose to educate them at home rather than a traditional academic setting is growing seven times faster than the number of children enrolling in grades K-12 every year.
As homeschooling has become increasingly popular, common myths that have long been associated with the practice of homeschooling have been debunked.
Any concerns about the quality of education children receive by their parents can be put to rest by the consistently high placement of homeschooled students on standardized assessment exams. Data demonstrates that those who are independently educated generally score between the 65th and 89th percentile on these measures, while those in traditional academic settings average at around the 50th percentile. In addition, achievement gaps between sexes, income levels, or ethnicity—all of which have plagued public schools around the country—do not exist in homeschooling environments."
An increase of 75% is a massive change, that is a lot of children. As a public educator, bus driver and school board member, the change in attitude is impressive. This started over 20 years ago in my later years of service. As a school board member, we did everything in our power to keep our numbers up by offering the best programs with the best teachers we could find. Our programs were so good that Open Enrollment made our numbers surge.
Remember the vouture discussions? Public education brought this distrust and failure upon itself but it is not all its fault, either. Family disintegration started the problem and the recent school shootings have made more parents take on the responsibility of the entire school system. That is something few can manage well. We all pay for public education yet fewer are using it.
The problem I see in home schooling is social contact with their peers. Some of the peers the parents are trying to avoid at an early age, the child will have to deal with when they go out into the world. How do you get a well rounded, socially involved education?
What do you think?