The National Center for Education Statistics announced a significant increase in the number of parents in the United States choosing to homeschool their children. Numbers have apparently doubled in a little more than a decade. Approximately 1.8 million children were being homeschooled as of 2012.
As a homeschooling parent myself, I can attest to the fact that one of the greatest common factors among homeschoolers is that every family’s reasons for homeschooling are unique. Generally speaking, most parents who choose to educate their children at home do so because they fully believe it is the best way to help them reach their full potentials in life. A recent article listed other commonalities among homeschoolers in this nation:
- A majority of them are caucasian.
- Most homeschooling families have incomes above the poverty line.
- One out of 10 homeschooling households includes parents who never graduated from high school.
- One in four includes parents who attained college degrees.
Although, many homeschooling families fall into one or more of the above categories, there is also much diversity regarding other demographics, such as residence. Some homeschoolers live rural lifestyles, while others call suburbs or cities their homes.
Homeschooling remains a mystery to people without any personal experience on the topic. It is definitely one of those issues attached to many myths and misperceptions. Some of the top myths I’ve encountered over the years include the following:
- Homeschooled children are deprived of social relationships.
- Homeschooling parents can’t provide a quality education for their children.
- Homeschooling takes money away from public schools.
Of course, anyone who has homeschooled, or has taken time to thoroughly research the lifestyle, understands that these are erroneous statements. (Unfortunately, there are plenty more where those came from.) In direct response to each of the above, I would say:
- My family has actually enjoyed far more social experiences through homeschooling than we ever did when my eldest children went to outside schools.
- Homeschooling is about more than academics; however, there are vast amounts of support, resources, supplements and supplies available to assist parents in providing well-rounded and thorough educations for their children.
- Because homeschooling parents still pay school taxes in their local areas, the argument can be made that homeschooling families financially contribute to local schools, which helps save money.
I know it has been a great blessing to mine for nearly 15 years!
Judy Dudich resides in the beautiful woods of Pennsylvania, where 24 acres of land and a home-office provide the perfect setting for her children’s home-education and her own homesteading and business ventures. Life is full of blessings (and challenges!) for Judy, as a wife, mother of 10 and Grammy to six. She is a published author, whose book, “I Surrender/A Study Guide for Women” continues to encourage and support others in Christian family lifestyles throughout the world. Judy has also previously worked in the online speaking circuit. Her passion for permaculture, re-purposing, foraging and organic gardening fills her days with learning and adventure that she loves to share.