Algonquin

To Homeschool or Not to Homeschool

Jul 11, 2022

When it comes to children, all parents ever want is to make the right decision on their behalf. Kids are simply unable to evaluate options the way a parent’s mature mind can, despite decisions needing to be made. This is one of the most significant woes as a parent – trying to make the choices that serve their children best.

A more common choice parents are coming across lately is the choice between the more common public school education with a structured schedule and routine alongside many other students and the option to homeschool.

Homeschooling has become more popular in recent years, having doubled in the past decade. There are roughly 1 million homeschooled students in the world. Homeschooling can be an excellent option for some students, and a not-so-great option for others. How can you know what is best for your child and their educational needs?

Despite it being legal in all 50 states, homeschooling has a set of rules that must be abided by when put into practice to ensure that the education children are receiving is of a high quality. Just like anything, there are pros and cons to homeschooling.

Pros

When choosing to homeschool, there is obvious flexibility when it comes to the schedule. Students who are homeschooled can choose the times they would like to learn, which provides them with some autonomy and control over their routine. Students also have the option to create a bit of leeway when it comes to the subjects and courses they choose. For example, the selection of electives is significantly broader when you get to choose them yourself instead of having to choose from a narrowed down list offered at a public school.

Additionally, students are often able to select their own deadlines which helps to develop stronger skills when it comes to independence and organization. When they are struggling with a specific topic, they have the ability to slow down and take their time with it rather than having to keep up with the rest of the class. On the other hand, they can move at a faster pace if they find a particular topic easy and feel ready to move on without having to wait for fellow students to understand as well.

Cons

One of the major downsides with homeschooling is that oftentimes a parent needs to turn it into their full-time job. This is to ensure that the homeschooling program going on is meeting the state’s educational standards. Additionally, there is the obvious lack of socialization. Not having easy access to a school’s clubs, sports, and other extracurriculars can take a major toll on the social development of students. This can result in having fewer friends and weak social skills.

However, some homeschooling programs do offer systems where multiple students who are homeschooled can come together to do their own activities! There also is always the option of doing extracurriculars outside of school, which are often just as positive and supportive.

Either way a parent chooses to go, always consult with the child and ask what they prefer. Despite them not having as developed of minds, it is always important to take their feelings into account. Also keep in mind that things can always change. If a student does a few years of homeschooling and decides that maybe it isn’t for them, it most likely isn’t too late to make the switch.

The best thing you can do as a parent is make the decision that feels right. Weigh out the pros and cons, consult with anybody else the issue pertains to, and move forward from there. You got this!

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