Should parents be encouraged to home school their children?Valerie MeyersJanelle MitchellKristin Thomas
Definition of Home Schooling • The instruction of a student in an educational program outside of an established school system, typically in the home environment
History of Home Schooling • 17th-18th century • American colonial period, majority of education was home schooling • Public schools taught trades, these schools were used by the underprivileged • Private tutors were used by the wealthy • 1860s • States began enacting compulsory attendance laws • Requiring school attendance for all school age students by law of that declared state • By 1929, compulsory attendance laws existed in every state • 19th century • Public schooling dominated, home schooling was not used at this time
History of Home Schooling • 1957 • Utah was the first state to recognize home schooling as an educational option to parents • Idea of home schooling started to reemerge in American society • 1970s • Home schooling was objected to by school administrators, teachers, and teachers unions • Recent history did not promote home schooling, though it was obvious that portions of the current population wanted this option • Courts decided that children needed to be educated and states had the right to require education but it was up to the parent to decide the type of educational program for their child • 1986 • All states adopted laws recognizing that parents had the option to home school
Relevant Court Cases for Home Schooling • 1923 Meyer v. Nebraska • A 10 year old was taught German, when the existing law stated foreign language could not be taught until 8th grade • Ruled that it is the right of the parent to give their child the education they see suitable • 1925 Pierce v. Society of Sisters • Questioned the Compulsory Education Act, which required school aged children to attend public school system • Ruled that this violates the rights of parents to direct the education of their children by enforcing a standardized system whereby children are forced to be educated by public teachers only • This case changed the state compulsory attendance laws, requiring inclusion of both public and non-public schools
Relevant Court Cases for Home Schooling • 1927 Farrington v. Tokushige • Legality of foreign language schools in Hawaii was questioned • Ruled “The…parent has the right to direct the education of his own child without unreasonable restrictions; the Constitution protects him…” • 1972 Wisconsin v. Yoder • Amish families challenged the age listed in the Compulsory Attendance laws • They believed that sending their children to school beyond the 8th grade level endangered the practices and ideals of their religion • Ruled that the First Amendment freedom of religion outweighed the school attendance laws and if the parental interests were religious, rather than personal or philosophical, children were exempt from the Compulsory Attendance law and did not have to attend school for the required number of years
Relevant Court Cases for Home Schooling • 1998 Brunelle v. Lynne Public Schools • The school committee enforced a policy that included home visits by the superintendent or school representatives to observe and evaluate the home schooling process • Brunelle argued that the home visits were in violation of his and his family’s rights • Ruled that the government may not intrude unnecessarily on family affairs
Home Schooling is Dependent Upon the Individual State Laws • Criteria for home schooling varies across all the states • States have the right to decide the: • Minimum qualifications for the home instructor • Curriculum requirements • Minimum amount of time spent on instruction (hours/day, days/year) • Measurement of student progress • States range from having no regulations on home schooling (besides compulsory school age) to having strict regulation requirements for home schooling • Pennsylvania is a state with strict regulation requirements for home schooling
Pennsylvania Home Education Law • Compulsory school age: 8-17 years • Attendance: 180 days/year (900 hrs elementary, 990 hrs secondary) • Parent must have a High School diploma • The parent must inform their local superintendent of their decision to home school their child/children by August 1st • Curriculum: • English: reading, writing, spelling, language, literature, speech, composition • Math: general math, statistics, algebra, geometry • Science: basic science, biology, chemistry • History: geography, US history, PA history, civics, social studies, world history, economics • Foreign language, music, art, physical education, health, safety, fire danger/prevention • Evaluation: portfolio of materials used, examples of work completed, written evaluation by a teacher or administrator, and standardized tests (submitted yearly)
Reasons for Home Schooling • Parent occupations involve extended stays outside of a school system • Families live in rural areas where the educational options are limited or not available • Parent educational experience influenced their decision to home school their kids • Political and/or religious beliefs • Belief that the “one-size-fits-all” concept used in public schools is not beneficial to their children
ADVANTAGES Of Home Schooling
Main Advantages of Home Schooling • The main advantages of home schooling involve a parent’s increased control & influence in the following areas: • Religious/Philosophical Beliefs • Socialization • Academics • As well as increasing a child’s “family time.”
Religion • Home schooling allows a family to weave their convictions into every aspect of their "curriculum." They are now in control of the subject matter and in control of the topics. • Provides students with “proper” social, moral, and religious values • Avoid “problem ridden” public schools • Some parents are under the impression that public schools are crime-ridden, drug-filled, dangerous environments • This allows them to incorporate a religious basis to the educational curriculum • Fastest growing group of home schoolers (2/3 of families choose it for this reason)
Socialization • Fewer behavioral problems • Less negative influences from peers • More respectful • Removes them from confinement with their “age-mates.” • With students of the same age, opposed to students at the same academic level. • Increased interactions w/ parents (adults) • Promotes more mature and poised youth
Academics • Custom-Designed Curriculum • Flexible schedule to teach desired curriculum. • Follow interests with a passion, which provides a profound love of learning • Foreign languages • Music • Other special skills/academic interests • Spend as little or as much time on a desired subject • Learn things when ready • Encourages & strengthens a child’s individual potential (B) Children can learn at their own pace. • Move as fast or as slow as needed • Encourages self-motivation • Encourages thinking for themselves
Academics (C) Working with the Child’s Learning Style • Many parents are under the impression that public schools are graduating illiterate students who are unprepared for the work force due to a lack of individualized attention • Students of average ability, who are able to input & process information according to their natural learning style, become great learners • a parent is better able to discover the child's learning style • The traditional classroom is teacher-driven, whereas the home school can be student-driven, and the child allowed to master areas in the best way at the best time for the best results
Do home schooled children actually do better than public school children? • On most academic measures, home schooled students outperform public school students on standardized tests. • The largest study so far, authorized for the Home School Legal Defense Association, by University of Maryland statistician Lawrence M. Rudner, examined 20,000 home schooled students from 50 states. • The data gathered in this study is consistent with information found in the Education Policy Analysis Archives. • These students scored higher on standardized tests than public and private school students in every subject and at every grade level. • The longer their parents had home schooled them, the better they did.
Results • Standardized national tests of skills & achievement: • Home schoolers scored better than 70-80% of all test takers • By 8th grade, the median performance of home school students is almost 4 grade levels above that of students nationwide. • By 12th grade, home schooled students scored in 92nd percentile in reading. • In 1999, when the SATs began tracking its scores, home schooled students scored an average of 1083, 67 points above the national average • They also scored an average of 22.7 on the ACT, which is higher than the national average of 21.
Home Schooled Students Attending College • 69% of home schoolers go on to college • Parents put together portfolios w/ samples of work & lists of accomplishments • More then 2/3 of American colleges now accept such transcripts • If other standardized tests are required, students simply take them • Harvard, for example, accepts approximately 10 each year
Home Schooled Students Attending College • Home schooled students do well in college, after the initial adjustment • A 1997 study reports that home school students are in fact academically, emotionally, & socially prepared to excel in college. • Also in 1997, for example, a four-year study of students at Bob Jones University found home schooled children scored higher in campus leadership activities than students from either the public school system or private schools. • Home school graduates average a 3.3 GPA their freshman year, compared to the average 3.12 GPA received by public school graduates • "Home schoolers bring certain skills -- motivation, curiosity, the capacity to be responsible for their education -- that high schools don't induce very well," says Jon Reider, Stanford's senior associate director of admissions.
“Family Time” • Brings families closer together. • Parents feel that children need to learn from people who care deeply about them. • After a child enters the public school system, they begin spending more awake time with peers than parents. • Less emphasis on parent-child relationship • Parents become the main role-model in a home schooling environment. • Easier to instill values & morals • Improved language development • Minimizes friction between teens & parents
What Can Public Schools Do? • In a study conducted in Kentucky in 1998, the question, “What can public schools do to re-attract families who home school their children?” was asked. • The #1 answer received was: • “Infuse religion into the practices and curriculum of the public schools.”
Five Main Disadvantages of Home Schooling • Time and Effort • Limits of the Teacher • Lack of Recognition • Financial • Socialization
Time and Effort Time consuming for parents • Designing the curriculum • Getting the materials • Teaching the curriculum Effort • Energy to stay informed
Limits of the Teacher • Feel inadequate to teach subject in coherent and skillful manner. • Sciences • Languages • Multicultural awareness • Lack of resources • Enrichment activities • Books • Fundamental Materials
Lack of Recognition from Public/Community • Academically • SAT scores • Spelling Bees • Athletics
Financial • School Districts • They are funded by the number of students enrolled. When students are pulled out, the school loses that funding. • Without funding, other effects could happen • Extra curricular programs like sports, music, and arts.
Financial • Parents/Family • They have to buy the materials • Provide transportation for field trips • Lost of income since one parent stays home.
Socialization • Diversity • Not exposed to diversity • Religious views • Cultures • Customs • Languages • Political
Socialization • Becky Martin, 17, stated: • “I feel the school setting is providing a ground for what lies ahead.” • She was home schooled, went to catholic school, then home schooled again because she couldn’t conform to the teacher’s method of teaching.
Group’s Conclusion • As a group, we feel that parents should not be encouraged to home school their children; however, we do acknowledge that home schooling is a viable option for parents. • Questions?
Resources • http://www.oakmeadow.com/resources/articles/Social.htm • http://www.epc.msu.edu/issues/homeschool.htm • http://education.yahoo.com/reference/dictionary/entry?id=h0253050 • http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0112617.html • http://www.iatdp.org/Articles/Journal%20Article%20Attendance%20Violations.htm • http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/JWCRAWFORD/meyer.htm • http://www.oyez.org/oyez/resource/case/305/ • http://www.mainstream.com/nhpolitics/getcase.farrington.html • http://www.oyez.org/oyez/resource/case/449/ • http://www.txjf.org/mschs.html • http://www.hslda.org/
Resources • http://www.city-journal.org/html/10_3_an_a_for_home.html • http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/1999/01/29/NB66774.D.html • http://epaa.asu.edu/epaa/v7n8/ • http://www.cato.org/cgi-bin/scripts/printtech.cgi/pubs/pas/pa-294.html • Homeschooling: Parents’ Reactions by: Margaret Martin