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December beginner's tournament: Homeschooling is superior to the public primary school system

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/8/2015 Category: Education
Updated: 10 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,173 times Debate No: 83621
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (16)
Votes (1)




This debate is part of round 1 of the December beginner's tournament.

There are currently about 2 million children homeschooled in the US and this amount is growing by at least 7% every year (3). This debate is about whether it's preferable for students to get homeschooled or to go to a public school. The focus is on the primary schools.

The burden of proof in this debate is shared. The participants have 72 hours to write their posts and the character limit is 10.000.


Homeschooling: to teach your children at home instead of sending them to a school (1)

Public primary school system: a school that gets money from and is controlled by a local government (2). The children are between the ages of 4 - 11 and they learn basic academic learning and social skills. They tend to learn basic arithmetic, English and the fundamentals of other subjects. (4)


1. No forfeits
2. Any citations or foot/endnotes must be individually provided in the text of the debate
3. No new arguments in the final round
4. Maintain a civil and decorous atmosphere
5. No trolling
6. Both debaters accept the definitions of the defined terms
7. For all undefined terms, individuals should use commonplace understandings that fit within the logical context of the resolution and this debate
8. Violation of any of these rules means the conduct point should be given to the opponent


Round 1: acceptance (no arguments)
Round 2: arguments (no rebuttals)
Round 3: rebuttals for the arguments in round 2
Round 4: defenses for the rebuttals in round 3 (absolutely no new arguments)





I accept this debate. This is my first online formal debate, so I hope to learn a lot here! I will take the position of Con as stated, defending the resolution that primary homeschooling is NOT superior to public primary schooling.

I look forward to this debate!
Debate Round No. 1


I’d like to thank ben2974 for accepting this debate and I wish him luck with his first debate. I’d also like to thank Hayd for organizing this tournament, to get on his good side and because he asked for it (6). In this round I’m going to present my arguments for why homeschooling is superior to the public school system.

Argument 1: homeschoolers perform better than students from public schools

In 2009 the effective of homeschooling was researched. It measured how well homeschoolers performed relative to the public school students on the basic skills: reading, language, math, science and social studies. These were the results:


The homeschoolers are clearly performing way better than the students who go to public schools. They tend to score 34-39 percentile points higher than the students in public schools. Since teaching students the basic skills and knowledge is a very important aspect of schools it’s clear homeschooling is doing what it’s supposed to do.

So, why is homeschooling so effective? I’ll point out two reasons now, but the other arguments I bring forth also contribute to this.

1. In public school classes the teacher has to divide his (or her) attention between dozens of students. With homeschooling one student gets all of the attention from the teacher. There is quite some evidence that suggests smaller classes have advantages (2). With homeschooling you’re taking these advantages to the extremes since the smallest possible class is a class with only one student.

2. With homeschooling it’s possible to adapt based on the strengths and weaknesses of the student. In classes teachers teach at one speed. If that speed is too low the student gets bored. School is holding back these students. When the speed of the teacher is too high, the student will get confused. Furthermore, mastery helps with learning. In math class you first learn to count and then to add and subtract. If you are struggling with counting and the teachers continues to adding, you’ll almost certainly struggle even more with your math. This often leads to students having to do over the entire year, which costs schools a lot of money and it costs the student an entire year.

With homeschooling these problems are eliminated. If a student is learning something fast it’s easily possible to move on earlier. If a student is struggling with a topic it’s easily possible to spend more time on that topic to make sure the student really understands it.

Argument 2: homeschooling provides a safe and free environment while public schools struggle with those

Public schools have a dark side. Statistics show about 30% of the students in the US is involved in bullying on a regular basis (as a victim, a bully or both) (3). Furthermore, multiple students believe their friends make fun of people who try to do well in school.

This is another reason why homeschoolers tend to perform better than students who go to public schools.

Homeschooling on the other hand provides a safer environment. Students don’t have to worry about bullies or group pressure. Furthermore, the parents of homeschoolers have more freedom. They can decide themselves when to go on a vacation. Going on an excursion to a museum or a theater is also easier. Another advantage is that parents can decide their own school times. Some students don’t like getting out of bed early, so in that case it’s possible to decide school just starts a little later.

Argument 3: Homeschooling strengthens the bonds between children and the family

With homeschooling the students are often taught by their own parents. This strengthens the bonds between parent and child. Many parents value this contact very highly. In fact, one of the most common regrets of people is that they worked too much and spent too little time with their children (5).

Another advantage that comes by is about religion and culture. Many parents believe their religion and culture are important parts of who they are. They also want to pass those on to their children. This can get better done with homeschooling than with sending children to public schools.


Homeschooling has multiple advantages over the public school system. Homeschoolers perform wonderfully, they are in a safe & free environment and homeschooling also strengthens the bond between the children and their parents. I’ll now hand the debate over to con so he is can argue why he believes the public school system is superior over homeschooling.


6) See comments

These sources helped me building my case:




In accordance with the terms, I will be posting my arguments, and nothing else. Thanks for this debate, and thank you Hayd for organizing this tournament!

I will present several points supporting the view that homeschooling is not superior to public primary schooling.

1. Public schooling is critical to a kid's social development -- especially during primary.
2. The economy will benefit more from a public schooling system.
3. There is a moral imperative to educate in public rather than in private (tied to economics and viability of homeschooling in general).

1. Public schooling is critical to a kid's social development -- especially during primary.

There is a crucial component to public primary schooling that homeschooling could not even begin to address. That is social development. School is not only the place where kids learn how to count and read. It is also the place where kids meet strangers, learn to converse with peers, develop --through the thousands of unique experiences only public schooling offers -- a moral and ethical character, and learn how to navigate through society at large. "Public schools generally have a range of children from the whole gamut of socioeconomic classes and a wide variety of backgrounds. This is the type of community that most people occupy as adults, and public school is an opportunity to meet it and learn to negotiate with other points of view and understand people with diverse backgrounds and values." (3)
In primary public schooling kids learn the fundamentals of reading, writing, math, and perhaps some social science. But academics is not the only essential function of public primary schooling. Learning how to communicate and work with others is extremely important. In public school, kids have to learn to cooperate with other kids, learn how and what it means to share things, make friends and make enemies, etc. These are experiences simply not shared in homeschooling. These kinds of social interactions force students to think about the consequences of their actions. It makes them think critically: communicating ideas and desires with peers will develop important thinking skills that help kids assess not just the effects of their actions, but their causes as well (i.e, self-reflection). If kids are at home studying and interacting exclusively with parents and/or a single tutor, their experiences in dealing with all of the above will be severely limited. They won"t know how to behave around kids, they won"t know how to make friends or deal with unfriendly peers, and they simply will not be as prepared as other kids in dealing with a dynamic community when they reach secondary school (if they do end up in public school). They risk feeling alienated, "different," or simply unable to fit in, which can have enormous consequences on a kid"s self-confidence and future social and personal development that goes well into adulthood.

2. The economy will benefit more from a public schooling system rather than home schooling.

This argument is a simple one, albeit assumptive, if not all together theoretical. If the majority of parents decide to keep their kids at home to be homeschooled by them or some tutors because it's better than going to public school, then the public schooling system will consequentially lose its predominance as an institution, and therefore a large sector of the economy will be diminished. In fact, in 2015, the U.S employed 3,100,000 teachers (1). As percentage of GDP, in 2011, education accounted for 5.2% of GDP. 5.2% of 2011s roughly $15.5 trillion GDP is roughly $775 billion. (2) That is a huge amount spent on jobs, infrastructure, and more. The theoretical elimination of the public schooling system would cut ALL sorts of jobs.
Y = C + I + G + Nx
utput/GDP = Consumption + Investments + Government (expenditure) + Net
Here we would experience a decrease in G.
A decrease in G = a decrease in Y.

Theoritically, it is also quite unsustainable/impractical to have an education system focused in home schooling. There simply would not be enough educators to accomodate individual or small-group learning. And the effects of this would be extremely detrimental. Some of this is explained below in part 3.

3. There is a moral imperative to educate in public rather than in private (tied to economics and viability of homeschooling in general).

Private homeschooling is related to private school in that the option exists because it offers tailored and usually superior teaching: those who can afford to school their children at home have the means to do so, providing the kids with a better education. It is undisputed that children learning 1 on 1 can learn more and quicker because teaching is tailored specially to kids" needs and attention is focused on the success of just one person, whereas teaching several students at once requires divided attention. The reason this is unjust is because homeschooling depends on familial endowment. It is not fair if one household can afford homeschooling while another family would likely want to do the same but cannot because they do not have the means to do so.
It also makes sense why homeschooled kids do better on standard exams. The top three homeschooling fathers" professions are accountant/engineer (17.3%), professors/doctors/lawyers (16.9%), and small business owners (10.7%). (4) This really helps to explain the achievement gap between homeschooled and public schooled children because families in good professions can provide better education for their children; they have more time and more money to focus on the education of their children.
Basically, if every family thought that homeschooling was better for their children academically, then we would get wildly different results from the children across the board. In any case, this is a hypothetical because people simply cannot afford to have their children homeschooled. The reality is that with homeschooling, only the rich will benefit. The gap between the rich and poor will widen. Homeschooling is not only inviable, it is unfair.


The public school institution allows for all students to be given a fair and equal opportunity at learning what everyone else has to learn: they are given the same holistic experience. If people decided to begin homeschooling their children instead of sending them to public school, millions of jobs would be lost, resulting in a smaller GDP. Finally, homeschooling causes a gap in academic performance between the rich and the poor; private homeschooling favors the rich, and public schooling favors everyone.

Debate Round No. 2


I’d like to thank my opponent, Ben2974, for posting his arguments and his sources. Some of his sources helped me with my rebuttals. In this round I’m going to rebut Bens’ arguments and show why homeschooling is better than the public school system.

1. Public schooling is critical to a kid's social development -- especially during primary

Con brings forward the social development of the children and he believes children should go to public schools so they can develop their social skills. But this argument can actually get turned against him, because research suggests that homeschoolers are more socially developed. The data is shown in the table below.

(round 2, con, source 4), data from

But how is this possible? There are multiple reasons, but this paragraph shows it pretty well:

Dr. Raymond Moore, author of over 60 books and articles on human development, has done extensive research on homeschooling and socialization. "The idea that children need to be around many other youngsters in order to be 'socialized,'" Dr. Moore writes, "is perhaps the most dangerous and extravagant myth in education and child rearing today." Children often do not respond well to large groups. They become nervous and overexcited by noise and too many people. Learning becomes difficult. Behavioral problems develop. After analyzing over 8,000 early childhood studies, Dr. Moore concluded that, contrary to popular belief, children are best socialized by parents -- not other children. (1)

It turns out that in classes the students experience a lot of group pressure. There is so much rivalry, ridicule and competition most of the students feel like they have to look and behave like the others to blend in. In the process the students forget their own values any maybe they never even discover who they truly are (1).

Furthermore, many homeschoolers often enjoy social experiences like visiting museums, traveling and taking dance classes (1).

2. The economy will benefit more from a public schooling system rather than home schooling

Con believes homeschooling is bad for the economy, because it reduces GDP. But GDP has one little flaw that’s very important in this debate: GDP doesn’t measure the value of domestic work. When you cultivate some vegetables in your garden you’re producing goods, but that’s not included in GDP. When you buy the same vegetables in the supermarket they are included in GDP. When you homeschool your children it’s not included in GDP, but when you send them to public schools it is included in GDP (2).

So homeschooling reduces GDP, but is this bad? I believe it isn’t. After all, the goal of education is to teach students skills. The goal isn’t to boost GDP. That’s a number that tries to show how much utility people in a country have, but it forgot domestic work also gives utility.

Off topic: please don’t get me wrong. I believe GDP is a very important number, but it has a few flaws. I believe it’s important to always keep those flaws in mind when working with GDP.

But con mentioned a few other things. First of all, G (government expenditure) goes down. So with homeschooling governments have to pay less for education. The funds that are freed this way can then get spent in other ways. To give some example, governments can decide to increase spending on healthcare or research. Governments can also reduce their debt.

Next, con brought up the fact the teachers of public schools are going to lose their job when homeschooling becomes more important. This is a form of creative destruction. Something old (the public school system) gets replaced with something new (homeschooling). Since the facts show homeschooling is better at educating children this is a change that will do more good than harm. Sure, it’s bad news for the teachers, but they will eventually be able to find a new job. Something similar to this happened around the time cars became popular. In 1900 the US employed about 109,000 carriage and harness makers (3). Almost all of these people lost their job and in the present you hear nobody complain about how awful is was those people lost their jobs.

3. There is a moral imperative to educate in public rather than in private (tied to economics and viability of homeschooling in general)

Con is under the impression that homeschooling will increase the gap between the rich and the poor. So let’s begin by looking at how big the impact of income is on the quality of homeschooling.

(Round 2, pro, source 1)

Well, it looks like earning more will boost the performance of the children, but it’s not much. Furthermore, even the children from the poorest parents outperform the children in the public school system by a lot. But maybe income isn’t the best indicator, so let’s also look at the education level of the parents:

(Round 2, pro, source 1)

Again it helps a little if the parents are highly educated themselves. But again even the children of the lowest educated parents outperform those from the public schools by a lot. So far it looks like income and education aren’t very important, but let’s also look at the expenses homeschooling parents make:

(Round 2, pro, source 1)

And we again have the same conclusion. Spending more on education helps, but it’s not much.

So children who have rich, highly educated parents who spend a lot on homeschooling are performing better than children from poor, lowly educated parents who don’t spend a lot on the education of their children. But the difference is very small and even the most disadvantaged children totally outperform the students from public schools.

But con also brought up the idea many poor people just can’t afford homeschooling. I did some research and I came to the conclusion that homeschooling is just as expensive as attending a public school. Maybe it’s actually cheaper. As can get seen in the image above multiple parents are able to homeschool for less than $600 per child per year. Meanwhile, parents who send their children to public schools have to pay for the supplies themselves. These costs are on average $630.36 per child per year (4). It turns out homeschooling is just as accessible for poor parents as the public school system.

Also, con, thanks for conceding to my first argument in which I pointed out homeschooling is more effective than the primary school system in teaching the basic skills.

Since I’ve gave my rebuttals, I’ll hand the debate back to con so he may rebut my arguments.





As with Stefen, I will be posting my rebuttals to his arguments. This is a really engaging debate since i've learned a lot about homeschooling and public schooling, much of which I thought I knew otherwise. Below, I defend against the claim that homeschooling is superior. Read and enjoy!

Rebutting: Homeschoolers performing better than public schoolers?
The problem with Con"s statistics is that homeschooling is simply not popular. In 2012, only roughly 2% of the American student body was homeschooled (1). That is roughly 1.1million homeschooled kids out of the roughly 50million public-schooled kids (1). The other problem Con faces is that demographically, the data are very, very skewed.

As seen above 68% of those homeschooled in 2011 were white. (2) Considering the skewed income levels favoring whites, it makes sense to find out that in 2012, more than 40% of those homeschooled made an annual salary of $75,000 or more. (1) Roughly 6% of those homeschooled make $20,000 or less. (1) These statistics matter because it tells us that those being homeschooled are in favorable conditions. If homeschooling"s population size was comparable to the public schooling sector, we"d very likely find a drastic reduction in academic success for those home schooled. Why? Because this would entail millions of parents/single parents requiring to spend a large margin of their daily lives at home teaching their kids, at the expense of working a full-time or even part-time job. This is the reality of homeschooling: people simply do not have the time; and if everyone decided to start homeschooling, I again assert that statistically speaking, the effectiveness of homeschooling will be largely determined by familial endowment.
To add to the above argument, research clearly suggests that other solid family conditions contribute massively to the success of homeschooled kids. As shown in source (2), nearly 70% of those homeschooled have parent(s) who at least have a vocational or technical degree/associates degree. The 30% have a high school degree or less. On top of that, 89% of those homeschooled have TWO parents. This essentially suggests that it is near impossible to receive an adequate homeschool education with one parent. To be clear: we"re arguing if homeschooling is superior to its public counterpart. Period. This would only be true if it were to satisfy all conditions, because there is no single condition in the real world. Fortunately for public schooling, family conditions are irrelevant; no matter the condition, the child will receive the exact same opportunity as everyone else. Unless homeschooled children on average can outperform their public counterpart under any and all homeschooling conditions, then it is not true to state dryly that *homeschooling is superior to public primary schooling.* Family conditions are real consequences that impact the viability and success of homeschooling.

Rebutting: homeschooling provides a safe and free environment while public schools struggle with those?
We must ask the question: is a safe and free environment necessarily better? I think not. Again, one of the glories of public education is that they provide holistic experiences, one of which is exposing children to real psychological issues that arise from uncontrollable environments. This is a problem with home-schooling. Home schoolers like to argue that they are socialized even better because they get to go out with their parents, talk to people of all ages, and do more friendly activities. The reality is that life is not that rosy, and homeschooled children will be less prepared to take on distressing peer-to-peer situations. "Being a victim of schoolyard thugs can help pupils learn how to manage disputes and boost their ability to interact with others, it was claimed. Helene Guldberg, associate lecturer in child development at the Open University, said intervening to stop the "supposedly terrible dangers of bullying" can do more harm than good. "If we treat children as if they cannot possibly cope with hurtful experiences, then we will likely undermine their confidence and make them less likely to cope with difficult events in the future. In effect, we will prevent them from growing up."" (3) I"m NOT saying that bullying is inherently good and should therefore be encouraged. What I"m saying is that bullying, or situations like it, are a part of life of experiences; it is inevitable that they will come across situations like it, directly or indirectly. Also, for elementary pupils, only 15% are involved in bullying (includes the bully and the bullied). (4) I would therefore conclude by saying that in the whole scheme of things, bullying (and the possibility of its experience) does not by itself warrant an excuse from a public education. In honest opinion, it should be a non-issue.

Rebutting: Homeschooling strengthens the bonds between children and the family?
The fruits of nurturing children for the sake of parent-child bonding can only be realized when these same children become teenagers and adults. Therefore, it is bold to claim that family bonds are better strengthened through homeschooling. Con has provided no evidence that homeschooled children have stronger family bonds in the long run when compared to public schooled children. This will be especially hard for Con to prove considering there are a multitude of factors that can strengthen (or weaken) the bonds between child and parent, beyond the child"s method of education. In fact, some of those variables are mentioned above in part 1 of my rebuttals.
In response to the religious argument, I have to say that a case can be made against indoctrination; unfortunately, this argument is probably worth another debate all together. But if you"re going to insist with this, I"ll go forth with it, too. For culture we have a problem of evidence again, because as far as my personal experience is concerned " and the experience of ALL my friends and acquaintances " cultural upbringing seems to be a near universal trend, regardless of the circumstance to which one was raised.

Debate Round No. 3


I’d like to thank Bob for his interesting rebuttals. They made me do even more research. In this round I’m going to defend against con’s rebuttals and show why homeschooling is superior to the public school system.

Homeschoolers performing better than public students

Con points out that the research I used only looks minimally at the conditions of the families. Conditions like race and income might explain a part of the performance gap between homeschoolers and the public school system, but not the entire gap. After all, homeschoolers perform on average a whole 34-39 percentile points higher. But let’s look at all of the factors to see if they might explain a part of the gap.


68% of the homeschoolers are white while 52% of the total students are white (1). Furthermore, white students perform better on the SAT than other races (2). In 2008-2009 the average SAT score of white student was 528 on reading, 536 on math and 517 on writing (2). In the same year the average homeschooler scored 550 on reading, 578 on math and 555 on writing (3). So the average homeschooler is still performing better than the average white public school student. This is evidence that race only doesn’t explain the entire gap.

Educational level of the parents


Con brought forth the hypothesis that the educational level of the parents might explain why homeschoolers are performing better than students from public schools. But the image above shows the parental education of the homeschoolers and all students. As you can see the parental education of the homeschoolers is roughly the same as those of the other students. Therefore the parental education can’t possibly be the reason homeschoolers are performing better than public school system.

Homeschooling provides a safe and free environment while public schools struggle with those

Con brought up the idea that bullying is part of life and that it might benefit children, because it helps the children cope with hurtful experiences. I don’t know what kind of rebuttal I was expecting, but I wasn’t expecting that. There are two things to mention about con’s point.

First of all, the idea that bullying helps people to cope with hurtful experiences is highly theoretical. Con didn’t provide evidence of these advantages of bullying, so it’s uncertain if these advantages actually exist.

Second of all, it seems like this rebuttal has a lot of overlap with con’s argument about the social development of children. So my rebuttal of round 3 to the social development argument can also get used to defend against con’s claim that bullying might help children to cope with hurtful experiences. Over there I already showed that research suggests homeschoolers are socially slightly better developed than students from public schools. So they are also slightly better at coping with hurtful experiences.

Furthermore, when I argued homeschooling provides a safe and free environment I also brought up the increased freedom parents experience. They can go on vacations when they want, go on excursions with more ease, etc. Con didn’t rebut this point, so I consider it dropped.

Homeschooling strengthens the bonds between children and the family

Con points out I didn’t give evidence to back up my claim that homeschooling strengthens the bonds between children and the family. It’s very hard to prove something strengthens the bond between people, because there’s no such thing as a bond strength unit. So the best evidence is to show that the activities that are done during homeschooling overlap with activities that people believe strengthen the bonds between parents and children. I found a few things that seem to improve the bonds between parents and children (4):

1. Know what your child's favorite things are
The parents of homeschoolers spend a lot of time with their children. So It’s easier for them to find out what their children like. Not only that, but helping your child improving in things he likes also strengthen bonds. Parents of homeschoolers are often helping their children learn what they like. So if their children like math, they help them with that.

2. Help them develop intellectually
The parents of homeschoolers often read books with their children or go the museum together. The goal of all of those activities is to develop the child intellectually, so that’s another way parents bond with their children.

The second part of con’s rebuttal is about religion. He points out I have little evidence to back up this argument, but just like with bonding, this is hard to prove. The best I can do to back this up is pointing out that many homeschooling families believe the freedom to teach their children their own religion is the number one reason they chose homeschooling (5).


In this debate I gave multiple reasons why homeschooling is superior over the public school system. These are:
- Homeschoolers score 34-39 percentile points higher on the academic subjects than students from public schools. The gap can only partially be explained by things like race.
- Homeschooling provides a safe and free environment. There are no bullies and there’s no group pressure. Furthermore, parents are free to decide many aspects of the education like when they go on holidays, when they go on an excursion and when school starts.
- Homeschooling probably strengthens the bonds between parents and children. Furthermore, many parents believe raising their children with their religion is important, which is also doable with homeschooling

For these reasons I urge the voters to vote pro.

With this I end my defenses and hand the debate back to con so he may provide his defenses.





In my final round, I will deconstruct pro’s principal arguments that homeschooling is definitively better than public schooling by addressing the soundness of the studies cited. Pro provided several graphs/illustrations showing that homeschooled kids are better off than public schooled kids. It is no accident, though, that the bulk of his claim comes from a single study, and from a single scholar. Lubienski (and fellow researchers) began by surveying claims made by homeschool advocacy groups, namely the National Home Education Research Institute (HSLDA). This institute funds agenda-driven research for homeschooling, which is directed by the National Home Education Research Institute’s, Brian D. Ray. He’s the one Pro has been citing throughout the debate. (1)

1. Do homeschooled kids achieve more academically/socially?
Lubienski argues that “these studies do not in fact demonstrate what the advocates say they do, because they all compare an unrepresentative sample of motivated, two-parent, middle or upper class white families to national norms that include the entire population.” (1) This general argument is also supported elsewhere, in a source I cited in the previous round (in this round it will be source 2): “Ray did not use a random sample but instead gathered participants through various email lists and homeschool advocacy groups. Further, the vast majority of the participants in his study were in the 18 to 24 age bracket (only roughly 15% were over 24, and 2% over 29), which means that it was likely a bit early to study outcomes for many of these participants.” This last bit is in reference to the socialization benefits of homeschooling, suggesting there is no concrete evidence from these early studies concluding that homeschooled adults are actually better off socially than public schoolers. “Ray frequently conducts studies of homeschooling in which huge majorities of participants are from white, middle and upper-middle class, well-educated, two-parent households...” (2) This makes Ray’s constant comparison to the national average throughout the study, as well as his suggestion that his survey participants’ success was due to being homeschooled rather than other factors, both unscientific and incredibly misleading. Lubienski continues: “children from privileged backgrounds who homeschool do well on standardized tests, just as they would have done had they attended public or private schools.” (1) Suffice it to say, in combination with my arguments in round 3 and the evidence I laid above demonstrating the scientific dishonesty found in Pro’s study by Ray, it is clear that homeschooling is NOT demonstrably superior – academically or socially – to public primary schooling (or any level of public school for that matter).

2. Is homeschooling cheaper?
To say that homeschooling is cheaper than public schooling is a total sham. Pro provides statistics (again from Ray) showing that homeschooling costs as low as $600/yr per child while public schooling costs $9,963/yr. Ray thinks he can compare the family costs to a single child education with that of public school’s costs. The reality is that sending kids to public schools costs the parents nothing. It is cheaper by default. There is no direct cost incurred by the parent here. On top of this, the statistic fails to take into account, or even acknowledge, hidden costs to homeschooling. By submitting to homeschooling, the family is forgoing a whole salary on the part of at least one parent. Lubienski summarizes: “The actual costs of homeschooling would need to include utilities and meals provided by the home during homeschool, the cost to the family of foregoing a second income so one parent can stay home, and unquantifiables like homeschooling mothers’ “motivation, experience, commitment, and so on.””(2)

3. The economy
Pro said:
“Con believes homeschooling is bad for the economy, because it reduces GDP. But GDP has one little flaw that’s very important in this debate: GDP doesn’t measure the value of domestic work. When you cultivate some vegetables in your garden you’re producing goods, but that’s not included in GDP. When you buy the same vegetables in the supermarket they are included in GDP. When you homeschool your children it’s not included in GDP, but when you send them to public schools it is included in GDP (2).”
There is no way to measure a child’s growing intellect and sociability in the economy. What can be measured is the growth and productivity of the workforce: will homeschooled children (now adults) provide more for the economy in the form of productive and skilled workers when compared to their public school counterpart? Hopefully I’ve demonstrated to the readership and voters that homeschooling is NOT discernibly superior to public primary schooling. What’s left, then, is the numbers. One parent of every child’s family will lose a salary. Assume that all families thought that homeschooling was superior. If there are ~35million homeschooled children (which is 2015’s total of primary school kids in public school ages 5 to 13), that would leave us with roughly 17.5million individual parents without a job (assuming average family has two kids), contributing towards something that doesn’t provide for the economy (homeschooling).
The above is also reason to reject Pro’s idea of creative destruction, as there is nothing being “created” as a replacement.

To summarize my view that homeschooling is NOT superior to public primary school:

1. Homeschooling, by virtue of available statistics and studies, is NOT verifiably superior to public primary schooling. The studies involved are bias, misleading, and simply do not account for the various conditions that homeschoolers can and do face on a national level.
2. I maintain that public schools offer a unique, holistic experience that homeschooling cannot even begin to address. Public schools offer such an experience at no expense to the parents and is available for all to take part in equally, regardless of familial circumstance.
3. The public schooling system is a large part of the American (and undoubtedly most countries) economy, providing jobs/income, community resources, and an all-around healthier economy, while homeschooling only weakens it.

All in all, this was a great first experience in formal debate, and I once again appreciate Hayd for setting up the tournament, and for Stefanwaal for a great debate . . . VOTE CON!!!!



Debate Round No. 4
16 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by lannan13 10 months ago
Currently reading through.
Posted by fire_wings 10 months ago
Good job :)
Posted by ben2974 10 months ago
Posted by Stefanwaal 10 months ago
Oh... But you called me Stefen, so we're even. :P
Posted by ben2974 10 months ago
Bob!!!! xD
Posted by ben2974 10 months ago
Thank you thank you!
Posted by Stefanwaal 10 months ago
Posted by Hayd 10 months ago
This is a very good debate, good job guys!
Posted by ben2974 10 months ago
I got wrapped up in my arguments xD
Posted by Stefanwaal 10 months ago
Yeah, it was pretty obvious you meant pro, so I was already assuming you meant that. It was a pretty funny mistake though.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Lexus 10 months ago
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Total points awarded:03 
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