Homeschooling gained momentum in the 1970s as some parents lost confidence in traditional schooling. Advocates pointed to personalized education and family values as selling points over public and private institutions.
But not everyone agrees on the benefits — some critics doubt homeschooling's impact on home-schooled students' social development.
This article explores the latest homeschooling data to understand this educational approach. We'll examine homeschooling's growth, performance versus traditional schooling, reasons for and against, demographics, and pandemic impact.
What is home schooling?
Homeschooling lets parents teach their kids at home, offering a tailored learning experience. This flexible approach turns the world into a classroom, allowing kids to explore subjects and follow their interests seamlessly.
Building on that, homeschooling not only strengthens family ties but also boosts self-motivation. It even provides socialization opportunities through community activities.
So, what's the takeaway? Choosing homeschooling means parents are actively involved in their child's education. This involvement fosters a love for learning that extends beyond the walls of a traditional classroom.
In this supportive setting, kids don't just learn; they thrive—academically, socially, and emotionally.
Most Relevant Homeschooling Statistics
Now's the perfect moment to dive into why people choose homeschooling, its impact on academic success, how the pandemic has influenced it, and its reach across diverse demographics.
This info is crucial for parents, educators, and anyone curious about this unique educational path.
Statistics on reasons to homeschool
According to a National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) report, there are many reasons for homeschooling a child, for example, the dissatisfaction with academic instructions at other schools, the unique needs of a child, or the preference for personalized education.
However, the study found the top 3 reasons for parents to homeschool their children:
1. 80.3% cite school environment concerns like safety and drugs as reasons.
2. 74.7% aim for religious or moral education.
3. 74.6% say homeschooling strengthens family bonds.
According to the same study of IES and NCES, 25% of parents said safety is the primary motivation behind their homeschooling decision.
With the alarming rise in incidents such as school shootings and crimes involving peers, parents are finding solace in the ability to educate their kids within the protected confines of their own homes. Also, another 15% of parents have as their primary reason for homeschooling their children the feeling of dissatisfaction with the academic instruction in the regular education system.
Statistics on homeschooled children performance
According to an analysis by the National Home Education Research Institute,
78% of the time, home-schooled students outperform those attending a traditional school.
The same report showed that home-schooled students typically score between 15 and 30 percentile points higher on standardized tests than school-bound students.
According to a University of St. Thomas study, the graduation of homeschooled students could be up to 10% higher than that of public schools.
The research shows that while, at least in the United States, only 11 states allow parents to educate their children at home without authorization from any authority, approximately 66.7% of homeschooled students graduate from college.
That numbers show that the traditional schooling system is not always the better option, and homeschooling children have great performance and development in academic fields.
Homeschooling Numbers Increased Due to Pandemic
While it is true that the lockdown following the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 increased homeschooling due to public health concerns, a recent study by the National Home Education Research Institute assured that this type of schooling has increased by at least 12% since 2019.
According to the research, this is how the different kinds of education attended by 2022 are divided, with 56.3 million active students in the U.S.:
1. About 5,4% of students between the ages of 5 and 18 in the U.S. are homeschooled.
2. 86.58% of students aged 5-18 are educated in public schools.
3. 8.29% goes to private schools.
4. 6.66% of students receive education at home (approximately 3,7 million children).
According to a national poll by EdChoice in 2021, 60% of parents have a more favorable opinion of homeschooling due to the pandemic. Efficient use of time, safety, and flexibility are several reasons that benefit this modality.
However, the 2021 Education Next survey results shed a different perspective.
Many parents who embarked on homeschooling found the experience physically and mentally draining, eagerly anticipating a return to regular schooling.
The survey indicated that nearly one-third of parents had to reduce their working hours to accommodate the demands of assisting with school work, highlighting the significant challenges they faced in balancing their professional and educational responsibilities.
Parental education level linked to homeschooling numbers
1.5 times more likely for children to be homeschooled if parents have higher education
According to the NCES Report, most homeschooled students in the United States come from families with higher educational attainment than the general population.
NCES data from 2021 shows that the number of homeschooled students was 1.5 times higher for those whose parents had attained a bachelor’s degree or some graduate school as their highest education level (3.3%); meanwhile, 2.2% of parents who home school their children have a high school diploma or less.
Homeschooling varies by race and ethnicity
The landscape of homeschooling reflects a diverse range of ethnicities and cultures. According to the Household Pulse Survey, 20.4% of families with homeschooled children identify as white, reflecting the historical origins of homeschooling rooted in traditional and religious contexts.
However, it is crucial to recognize that homeschooling is not exclusive to white families. The survey reveals a diverse representation of ethnicities among homeschooling families:
African American families make up 18.3% of those who choose this educational approach, Hispanic families account for 18.2%, and Asian families comprise 15.1%, showing a growing embrace of homeschooling across various racial and ethnic groups.
Notably, homeschooled black students substantially increased between 2020 and 2021. The data from The Guardian reveals a remarkable jump from 3.3% to 16.1% within just one year.
While specific motives behind this increase may vary, some analyses suggest that it stems from the belief that the traditional education system disproportionately penalizes black students and fails to represent their culture in subjects like literature and history adequately.
This points to a desire among black families to reclaim their cultural heritage and provide a more inclusive educational experience for their children through homeschooling.
Reasons to not homeschool children
While homeschooling has gained popularity, some parents still have concerns about homeschooling their kids.
According to NCES data, 14% of parents are hesitant about homeschooling due to worries about managing their time effectively. They fear the challenge of balancing their responsibilities while ensuring a quality education for their child.
Additionally, 16% of parents express concerns that homeschooling may not adequately prepare their child socially for real-life interactions. They value the importance of social skills and worry about potential limitations in a homeschooling environment.
Another 12% of parents prioritize maintaining their child's current relationships and do not want to disrupt their connections with friends or peers.
Furthermore, 15% of parents struggle with coordinating homeschooling with their work schedule, finding it challenging to juggle professional commitments and teaching responsibilities.
Additionally, 13% of parents express uncertainty about the realistic feasibility of homeschooling, questioning their ability to provide a comprehensive education at home.
And finally, 12% of parents choose not to homeschool to avoid interfering with their child's current education, valuing continuity in their academic journey.
More homeschooling statistics
The homeschooling landscape is diverse, with variations in student demographics and family incomes. According to a study conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), it was found that a significant portion of homeschooled students, 4.7%, reside in rural areas.
Interestingly, this surpasses the percentage of homeschooled students in cities at 2.5%, suburbs at 2.4%, and towns at 2.2%. This suggests that homeschooling is more prevalent among families living in rural communities.
Furthermore, the study revealed important insights into the economic backgrounds of homeschooling families. Surprisingly, 16.2% of parents who homeschool their children have annual incomes below $50,000.
The distribution of income levels among homeschooling families in 2021 was as follows:
- 8.6% had incomes between $50,000 and $75,000,
- 7.7% fell within the range of $75,000 to $99,999, and
- 5.3% had incomes ranging from $100,000 to $150,000.
These findings demonstrate that homeschooling is not exclusive to families with higher incomes, as a significant portion of homeschooling families operate within more modest financial circumstances.
Pros and Cons of Home Schooling
Now, let's look at the pros and cons of homeschooling to better understand this educational choice and its impact on families and children.
Pros of Homeschooling:
- Personalized Education: Homeschooling allows customized instruction tailored to the child's needs, learning style, and pace.
- Flexible Schedule: Homeschooling offers the freedom to create a flexible schedule that accommodates family routines, travel, and other activities.
- Strong Family Bonds: Homeschooling provides an opportunity for increased family bonding, fostering strong relationships and open communication.
- Individual Attention: With one-on-one instruction, homeschooling ensures children receive personalized attention and support.
- Safe and Nurturing Environment: Homeschooling provides a safe and nurturing learning environment, shielding children from negative influences and bullying.
- Freedom to Explore Interests: Homeschooling allows children to explore their passions and delve deeper into subjects of their interest.
Cons of Homeschooling:
- Limited Socialization: Homeschooling may limit opportunities for social interaction and require extra effort to ensure socialization through activities, clubs, and community groups.
- Lack of Professional Instruction: Homeschooling places the responsibility of teaching on parents, who may need specialized knowledge in certain subjects.
- Potential for Isolation: Homeschooling can sometimes lead to isolation for children and parents, as they have fewer opportunities for peer interactions.
- Additional Time and Effort: Homeschooling demands significant time and effort from parents, who need to plan lessons, research curriculum, and provide ongoing support.
- Limited Access to Resources: Homeschooling may require additional investment in educational materials, resources, and extracurricular activities.
- Limited Exposure to Diverse Perspectives: Homeschooling may offer limited exposure to diverse ideas and perspectives that children typically encounter in a traditional school setting.
- The percentage of homeschooling has been increasing in the past few years, and the pandemic was one of the reasons that parents now have a more favorable point of view about this kind of education.
- Homeschooling allows parents to play a more active role in their child's education and tailor the curriculum to their needs and interests.
- It offers an alternative to traditional school education, which some families may find a better fit for their children.
- Homeschooling allows students to work at their own pace, focus on subjects they are particularly interested in, and avoid areas they may struggle with.
- Many families homeschool to reinforce their values and beliefs or provide a more faith-based education.
- Otherwise, homeschooling is criticized too by some parents because of the lack of socialization and some concerns about time management and issues with their own work.
35 essential homeschooling statistics
- 80.3% of U.S. parents who homeschool their children have their main reasons to do it their concern over safety, drugs, and negative peer pressure.
- 74.7 % of parents have their main reasons for their desire to provide religious or moral education.
- 74.6% have their main reasons that homeschooling helps keep the family together.
- 25% of parents said that safety is the primary motivation behind their decision to homeschooling
- 15% of parents have as their primary reason for homeschooling the feeling of dissatisfaction with the academic instruction in the regular education system.
- 78% of the time, home-schooled children outperform traditional school students.
- Home-schooled students score between 15 and 30 percentile points higher on standardized tests than school-bound students.
- In the United States, only 11 states allow parents to educate their children at home without authorization from any authority.
- Homeschooled children may graduate at a 10% higher rate than public school students.
- Approximately 66.7% of homeschooled students graduate from college.
- According to National Home Education Research Institute, homeschooling has increased by at least 12% since 2019.
- About 5,4% of students in the U.S. are homeschooled.
- Approximately 3,7 million children receive education at home.
- Due to the pandemic, 60% of parents have a more favorable opinion of homeschooling.
- ⅓ of parents had to reduce their working hours to accommodate the demands of assisting with school work, according to an Education Next survey in 2021.
- 3.3% of homeschooled students come from families with higher levels of educational achievement.
- 2.2% of parents who homeschool their children have a high school diploma or less.
- 20.4% of families with homeschooled children identify as white. (Household Pulse Survey)
- 18.2% is the number of Hispanic families that prefer to educate their children at home.
- 15.1% of Asian families homeschool their children.
- Up to 18.3% represent the African American families who choose Homeschooling over traditional Schooling.
- The number of homeschooled black students increased from 3.3% to 16.1% between 2020 and 2021, according to The Guardian.
- 14% of parents are hesitant about homeschooling due to worries about managing their time effectively.
- 16% of parents express concerns that homeschooling may not adequately prepare their child socially for real-life interactions.
- 12% of parents prioritize maintaining their child's current relationships and do not want to disrupt their connections with their peers.
- 15% of parents struggle with coordinating homeschooling with their work schedule.
- 13% of parents express uncertainty about the realistic feasibility of homeschooling.
- 12% of parents choose not to homeschool to avoid interfering with their child's current education.
- 4.7% of homeschooled students reside in rural areas.
- 2.5% of homeschooled students reside in cities.
- 2.4% of homeschooled students reside in suburbs
- 2.2% of homeschooled students reside in towns.
- 16.2% of parents who homeschool their children have annual incomes below $50,000.
- 8.6% of parents who educate their children at home have annual incomes between $50,000 and $75,000.
- 7.7% of homeschooling parents have annual incomes from $75,000 to $99,999.36. 5.3% of Parents had incomes ranging from $100,000 to $150,000.
Homeschooling Statistics Infographic
What are the main reasons parents choose homeschooling?
Many parents choose homeschooling for various reasons. According to statistics, the top reasons include concerns over the school environment (safety, drugs, and negative peer pressure), the desire to provide religious or moral education, and the belief that homeschooling helps keep the family together.
What are some challenges of homeschooling?
Homeschooling comes with its challenges. These can include limited socialization opportunities, the need for parents to take on the role of teachers, potential isolation, and the demands of balancing homeschooling with work and other responsibilities. Additionally, homeschooling may require additional investments in educational resources and materials.
Are there concerns about socialization for homeschooled children?
While socialization is a valid concern, studies suggest that homeschooled children can still have ample social interactions through extracurricular activities, clubs, and community groups. However, parents may require additional effort to ensure social opportunities for their children.
Are there any legal requirements for homeschooling?
The legal requirements for homeschooling vary depending on the location. Parents may need authorization or notification from relevant educational authorities to homeschool their children in some places. It is important to check your area's specific homeschooling regulations and requirements.
Can homeschooled students gain access to higher education?
Yes, homeschooled students can pursue higher education. Statistics show that a significant percentage of homeschooled students graduate from college. This indicates that homeschooling does not hinder their ability to succeed academically and pursue further educational opportunities.
- Nacional Home Education Research Institute (NHERI)
- Nacional Center For Education Statistics (NCES)
- Home School Legal Defence Association (HSLDA)
- Homeschooling: The Research (NHERI)
- Education Next
- Linked In
- The Guardian
- Prosperity for America