Homeschool Statistics – Homeschooling

Are they important to know about? Consider these questions!How popular is homeschooling? Why do families decide to homeschool? Are homeschoolers achieving at a better level than their public school peers? What about college?These are legitimate questions that come up when I talk about homeschooling. Are there good homeschool statistics to support some of these answers? Yes! Read on for homeschool statistics to help answer these questions!How Popular is Homeschooling?According to the Department of Education, the number of home-schooled students has surged by 74 percent over the past eight years, to 1.5 million.The National Home Education Research Institute, which supports homeschooling, puts the number of home-schooled students above the Department of Education’s estimates, at just over 2 million.Why Do Families Choose to Homeschool?In the magazine, U.S.News, Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, wrote. “The government has eliminated God from the classroom and too often replaced Him with an anti-life, anti-family curriculum that misses life’s deepest meaning.”According to the Department of Education report in 2007, parents homeschooled their children for a variety of reasons, but three reasons were noted as most important.
To provide religious or moral instruction
Concern about the school environment
Dissatisfaction with the academic instruction at other schoolsMany parents find it unthinkable that kids have to go through metal detectors before they can enter their schools.School violence has increased at an alarming rate.According to Isabel Lyman’s article, “An Analysis of Print Media Coverage of Homeschooling: 1985-1996”,The top four reasons given to homeschool were:
Dissatisfaction with the public schools
The desire to freely impart religious values
Academic excellence
Building of stronger family bondsWhat types of Families Choose Homeschooling?
Different races
Social economic backgrounds and religions
Live in the country
Small towns
Single parents
Moms that stay home
Two parent familiesThrough the Scholastic Achievement of Homeschool Students Bob Jones University Press Testing and Evaluation Service, 20,760 students in 11,930 families were surveyed:
One-fourth of home school students (24%) have at least one parent who is a certified teacher.
Home school students watched much less television than students nationwide; 65% of home school students watch one hour or less per day compared to 25% nationally
98% were in married couple families
Most home school mothers (77%) did not work outside the home.What are the results of Homeschooling?The homeschool statistics of “The Scholastic Achievement of Homeschool Students” states:
Almost 25% of home school students were enrolled one or more grades above their age-level peers in public and private schools.
The median scores for every subtest at every grade were typically in the 70th to 80th percentile… above those of public school students.
Home school students in grades 1 to 4 performed one grade level above their age-level.The National Home Education Research Institute institute’s research has found that home-schooled students score about 15-30% above their public-school peers on standardized achievement tests.Home school students do exceptionally well when compared with the nationwide average. In every subject and at every grade level of the ITBS and TAP batteries, home school students scored significantly higher than their public and private school counterparts.Scientific research has shown that home schooled children are 77% more likely to complete a four-year college degree with honors than children who are educated in a more traditional fashion.The HSLDA’s study of 1,657 homeschooling families notes that homeschooled students want to attend college: 69% of respondents pursued a college education.Because home education allows each student to progress at his or her own rate, almost one in four home school students (24.5%) are enrolled one or more grades above age level.Do Homeschooled Students Get Admitted to College?A growing number of colleges and universities around the United States, including Harvard and Yale, are admitting homeschooled students to their freshman classes.The Chronicle of Higher Education recently reported a boom in homeschooled students’ winning admission to selective colleges.In the year 2000, a Times magazine article stated that Stanford University accepted 26% of the 35 homeschoolers who applied–nearly double its overall acceptance rate.23 of 572 freshmen at Wheaton College in Illinois were homeschooled, and their SAT scores average 58 points higher than those of the overall class.Homeschooling students can achieve and do exceptionally well!

Homeschool Laws Vary by State – Homeschooling

Here are examples of states varying between very lax homeschooling regulation to highly regulated. I am comparing Utah and Texas, which are both relaxed, to Washington, which is considered moderate, and Pennsylvania, which has high regulation. You can easily see the variance.Several states, Utah included, do not have rigorous homeschool laws. In Utah, for example, you need to teach certain subjects for a certain length of time, and you need to provide a signed affidavit saying you will do this. However, there is no oversight for this. There are no requirements for assessment, and the state has very few rights to ask whether or not you are following these rules. They cannot inspect where you teach, or decide whether or not you are qualified to teach. As soon as you provide the affidavit, you will be allowed to homeschool in Utah.If that sounds too uptight for you, groups of families may form a “private school” that is exempt from regulation.In Texas, homeschool families are also highly protected. Similar to Utah in the amount (or lack of) regulation, Texas does go further than Utah and actually protect homeschool families’ rights to choose their method of teaching their children.The subjects covered need to include:Good citizenship
grammarIn Texas, homeschool families are considered private schools, and as long as they teach “good citizenship” are free from other regulation. As in many other states, Texas cannot decide whether you are fit to teach, they cannot check in on you, and cannot ask you to provide assessment. A few states, Texas included, has written into the law that homeschooled children cannot be discriminated against when applying to university or college.The history in Texas is litigious: in the 1980s, 80 families were actually tried in court for truancy. Luckily, that opened the door to a legacy in Texas that actually makes homeschooling easy. My hat is off to those pioneer families.Contrast that with Washington, which is considered to have “moderate” regulation.Washington homeschool law provides two options for families. The “homeschooling” option and the “private school” option. The regulations are byzantine compared to Utah or Texas. Subjects that must be taught include:Occupational education
social studies
development of an appreciation of art and musicAnother regulation in Washington is that you must use a curriculum, and you must meed certain criteria if you homeschool your children. Specifically, the parent is supervised by a certificated person who helps plan the year together, has a minimum number of 4 hours in contact each month, and this person evaluates the child’s progress.
the parent has either forty-five college quarter credits or the equivalent
the parent has completed a course in home-based education
the parent is “deemed sufficiently qualified to provide home-based instruction by the superintendent of the local school district.” Also, compared to Texas and Utah that require no assessment, Washington requires standardized testing. This testing needs to be done annually, and in a prescribed manner. The test results must be filed and kept for a certain amount of years.Under the “private school” option, the children are schooled at home by parents using a prescribed curriculum from a private school.Pennsylvania homeschool families have five legal options, some of them a little odd perhaps. Contrasting Pennsylvania with Texas, for example, shows what a huge gap exists from state to state.Under the homeschool statute, families file an affidavit each year. They first must file this affidavit when they begin homeschooling, and then each year by August 1. The affidavit must include the following information:
Name of the parent, name and age of the child, address and telephone number
Assurance that subjects are taught in English
outline of proposed educational objectives by subject area
Assurance of Immunization
Assurance that the child has received required health and medical services
Evidence that the program will comply with the Homeschool Statute
Assurance that the parents, all adults living in the home, and supervisors have not been convicted of certain criminal offences in the last five years.Contrasted again with Texas and Utah, by the end of the school year, parents must submit a portfolio of their children’s work, and in certain grades, they must also include the results of standardized testing. There are rather strict rules about what should be included in the portfolio, as well as who is allowed to provide an evaluation of your child.Last, if your child has been identified as needing special education services, his education plan needs to be approved by a special education teacher or school psychologist.In Pennsylvania, you can also choose to homeschool under the “private tutor” option. You must have a criminal record check, and you must be a certified teacher. If you are, then you may teach your children at home in Pennsylvania. Oddly, the law states that the tutor (mom or dad) must be paid or otherwise compensated for services.Pennsylvania homeschool families may teach their children in their home as a satellite campus of a day or church school. This option works if you already belong to or are willing to join a church based homeschool group. There is a list of these groups available.The curriculum for homeschooling in Pennsylvania must contain:English
History of the United States and Pennsylvania
Safety Education (I am not making this up) Including regular and continuous instruction on the danger of an prevention of fires
Health and Physiology
Physical Education
Requirements for high school are almost the same, including the fire prevention stuff. Students in high school also need a foreign language, but can skip P.E., music, and art.There is also an accredited boarding school or day school option. You may teach your children at home if you are approved under this option.As I sifted through all the information on each state and province’s homeschool regulation, reading through statutes, blogs from parents in the different states, information on each state’s department of education, and information put out by the Homeschool Legal Defence Association, I became more and more amazed at the huge difference between each area. We live in British Columbia, which, after reading and writing on this subject for the past 8 months, I am convinced is the best place to homeschool in North America. I would love to know if there is any correlation between the states with the highest regulation and student results.Another interesting thing I noticed is that some states seem to have an adversarial relationship with homeschoolers, and some seem to actually encourage it. This despite the level of regulation. In fact, I noticed that certain states and provinces seem to have lax regulation coupled with strict penalties for not following them. In this case, the ambiguity could prove to be quite stressful. How can you be sure you have provided adequate instruction if there is no clearly laid out definition of what that means? At least in Pennsylvania, you know what you’re up against.

Virginia Homeschooling – Is it Legal? – Homeschooling

Thinking about homeschooling your children in Virginia? While homeschooling is legal in Virginia, parents need to review the applicable Virginia homeschooling law because Virginia is one of the few states which provides detailed requirements for homeschooling. This article will review some of the main requirements of the law.Code of Virginia Section 22.1-254.1 sets forth the state requirements for Virginia homeschooling. The statute applies to children between the ages of five and 18. Parents providing instruction must have at least a high school diploma or meet one of three other qualifying requirements.Parents are required to notify the division superintendent each August of their intent to homeschool their children and provide the curriculum to be followed and which of the four qualifying criteria they meet. Following the first year of instruction, there are additional requirements for progress reports which include either state mandated testing or some other specified evaluation procedure. In the event children are not making satisfactory progress as measured by testing or an individual assessment by certain persons specified in the law, the homeschool can be placed on probation for one year and the parents are required to submit a remediation plan.The law provides an exemption for children receiving religious instruction or who do not attend school for religious reasons. However, the statute provides some tough guidelines in this area so mere religious belief or moral objection will be insufficient to warrant an exemption.Parents homeschooling children in Virginia would do well to join a homeschooling association or affiliate with a homeschooling school or do both to receive the guidance they need to comply with Virginia’s law on homeschooling since failure to comply with the law will involve the parents in activities that will take away for the time and resources needed for teaching their children.This article has highlighted some of the main features of the homeschooling law in Virginia and is intended to be informational and not the giving of legal advice. Parents should seek the services of a competent attorney or government official to discuss their individual situation.

Homeschooling Facts – Research Against Homeschooling – Homeschooling

A lot of research has been done to proof that home schooled children’s academic achievements are better than that of learners in public schools.There is, on the other hand, very little research available to proof arguments against homeschooling.Certain questions that were raised by experts in the education field can, however, not be ignored.Regulation of homeschooling seems to lack dismally in most states of the USA. The parent has the freedom to teach any curriculum and some even work without a specific curriculum.Marty Hittelman, the president of the California Federation for teachers, has a problem with the stringent standards, evaluation and training teachers are subjected to, in public schools, compared to homeschooling parents that are not expected to undergo training or any form of standardized evaluation.According to the California Federation for Teachers, there are also no standards or specific exit exams imposed on homeschooling students, in the California region. This seems to be the rule rather than the exceptions in most of the states. Even though these arguments proof some problems regarding the control of homeschooling by the state, it is necessary to mention that regardless of this, most children being home schooled still have much higher grades than most of their peers in public schools.Further than these specific negatives been pointed out regarding the regulations by the state, the rest of the opposing arguments against homeschooling are just arguments and there is no research available to proof the validity of these arguments.Many of these arguments point to possible problems, that any parent considering homeschooling should definitely be aware of.Most of the arguments against homeschooling rather has to do with the ability of the family to provide the correct homeschooling opposed to definite research that homeschooling is wrong for everybody.There is no argument against the fact that there are many challenges for homeschooling parents and children. Before homeschooling can be successful and be of more benefit to the child than public schooling, the parents will have to realize and overcome these challenges.