Too many people here are discussing the academics and socialization factors only. They are forgetting about many families like mine with breadwinners who do not work the regular hours & days. For us, homeschl'g is the only way our children can spend enough time with us. My kids may not be seeing the same friends everyday 5-7x a week (it's only 2-3x for my kids) but how many full-grown adults became dysfunctional because they were not with their friends 5x a week? I do know of many dysfunctional adults who carried hatred for their parents for not getting enough time and attention.
For me, one of the advantage of HS is that hs'd children can have a say on the coaches and instructors that supplement the parents' teaching. My kids have that same prerogative when it comes to OTHER KIDS, they do not have to put up with troublemakers or lazy ones. Will this make them weak in the future? I DOUBT IT. All my kids are trained in martial arts. Yet, they choose not to use on bullies except when someone else is getting physically hurt.
My kids are not extremely smart or talented, they have their strengths and weaknesses. I try to focus on improvements instead of exceling on parts where they're already good at. I don't believe they need to be super-smart or popular, I just want them to live a balanced life and learn to get along with people of different beliefs and practices. My kids can also adapt to people of different ages and social status. I credit the hs group play dates, field trips, co-op classes, group projects, bible studies, community services, etc. that welcome children of diff. ages and levels. By the way, there are actually TOO MANY SOCIALIZATION options for HS families in our area. My family try to enjoy almost anything that this country has to offer that we can afford...AT THE TIME THAT IS CONVENIENT TO OUR FAMILY...while my children still ENJOY our company.
Someday, my kids will live independently and I am excited for them because even though they may not be READING ALL THE BOOKS that traditional schools use... they are definitely LEARNING HOW TO FIND and CONFIRM information. And has gathered enough KNOWLEDGE in REAL-LIFE LIVING by watching and performing some of the adult tasks that I do. I have no doubt that they can LEARN, PERFORM, and TEACH whatever they want --- I only ask of them to choose a career that will benefit disadvantaged humans, or to help protect our world & its inhabitants... AND NOT JUST TO MAKE A LOTTA MONEY FOR THEIR OWN PERSONAL GAINS. This is all just my opinion, I do not represent homeschoolers. There are so many types of homeschoolers with different PRIORITIES, GOALS, and METHODS. And that is the beauty of homeschooling, people have MANY choices instead of being stuck with only one or two.
If you examine what they may be exposed to in public school and the failing academic skills of our children perhaps home schooling is a safer decision. We currently have some of the dumbest laziest students on the planet, I do not see that changing anytime soon.
There are several reasons a parent may wish to home school a child, and not all of them are religious ones. If a child is being bullied at school, and administrators do nothing about it, home schooling may protect a child. Home schooling groups, in which groups of parents teach each other's children, with an agreed-upon curriculum, give the child the necessary opportunities to socialize with his or her peers. Sometimes, home school curriculum is far superior to public school curriculum, and even to some private schools.
Dedicated parents who teach their children at home usually produce well rounded, intelligent students who are often far ahead of children their same age who are attending public school. The curriculum is better, more varied and the parents can also teach their children strong family and moral values--something public schools will not do. Two of my three children were eligible to skip a grade when enrolled in public school after I taught them at home for one year.
It is a measureable fact.
They CONSTANTLY and OVERWHELMINGLY score SIGNIFICANTLY higher (usually at least a complete grade or two) than their counterparts in "the system". So much so, the government is beginning to outlaw it to eliminate the negative light it casts upon the existing POOR education system in the US. We are ranked 18 out of the top 36 modern countries.
Both public and private schools teach students as if one size fits all. When children are taught at home they receive an education that takes their learning speed and individuality into consideration. Teacher lay offs have created over sized classrooms and teachers who feel over whelmed with too much responsibility and not enough time. Schools are often a breeding ground for exposure to bad influences.
Yes students who participate in home school programs are at an advantage in comparison to students who go to public schools and private schools since they are at a liberty to work around their own educational goals and working towards achieving them. They are not bogged down by the pressures of curriculum, attendance and exams. They have a lot more flexibility and career options to choose from.
The parent is able to customize the lessons according to the faith and values that each individual family has. It is mainly one-on-one instruction, the information is not limited to just a text book or occasional film, and each child can move at his pace rather than a classroom pace that may have 30 children in it.
Some children do better in a home school environment than in a traditional school, depending on the temperament of the child and the atmosphere of the school. Whether the child gets a good education through home schooling depends on the parents. Home schooling parents are responsible for making sure their children have access to materials and resources that will enable them to learn in all subject areas. Home schooling can be a great option for some kids who don't do well in a regular school.
Over 20 years of teaching second grade I have received many students who have enrolled in public school after several years of homeschooling. In every single case the students, while often bright and lovely children, have been significantly behind their peers in academics. Many homeschooling parents have good intentions but lack the knowledge of teaching students how to read and don't have any sense of what grade level expectations are. Then the classroom teacher is faced with somehow catching these students up on the years of instruction they missed. This often takes time away from other students in the class. Homeschooling should be regulated by the state so parents who choose this path have to be accountable.
While some home school situations may be advantageous with exceptional parents, the vast majority of these cases tend to deprive children of the same quality of education (including the learning of social skills) that they could receive in schools with other students. Why have one teacher when you can have a whole school system of professional educators?
While many home-schooled students do test better than traditionally taught students, I think the effectiveness of home-schooling ultimately depends on the how the parents administer a home education. Their education level, as well as their teaching style, affects how successful their children can ultimately be in a home school environment. That said, obviously home-schooling has a teacher-student ratio advantage over public and private schools.
Children who are home schooled may have certain advantages, but these advantages are only present if the adult in charge of them makes it happen. Public and private schools may not always provide the best in education, yet, at the same time, children are learning how to socialize with a diverse crowd of people, and learning some street smarts and socialization skills, as well. If everyone was home schooled, we may as well all just sit at home, working from home, and never interact, socially. Children also must learn how to interact with a multitude of different adults to become healthy adults themselves.
I disagree that home schooled students are at an advantage, in comparison to students in public/private schools, because it depends on the quality of instruction they receive. Public and some private schools go by the No Child Left Behind Act, which makes sure that students are hitting their target, when it comes to skills. Personally, as a tutor with experience with home school kids, I have experienced very bright home schooled students who still have big gaps or challenges, when it comes to literacy and mathematic skills.
Students that excel in home schooling would have done the same in any environment. For home schooling, the materials used are not standardized, and may be erroneous, even if the parents have the best intentions. It is also not for everyone either. It takes a lot of self-discipline on both sides.
If anything those who are actually in a school, be it public or private, have all the advantages. Granted, the home schooled child will have more one on one attention. But that attention will only come from one adult. Probably a parent. The kids in actual schools will have the attention of many other adults, along with the help and interaction of their peers. I have found in the past that sometimes it takes a child to explain something to a child. When the children do not understand they may need to be shown by many different people including someone who may understand their mind set a bit better then an adult.
Even the smartest parents can only present their own thoughts and reasoning processes to their children. That is why public and private schools exist - to teach children a variety of ways of looking at the world. Home schooled children are generally only taught by their parents, and will not be challenged to think about things in ways that differ from their parents. The opinions they form about the world will be influenced only by their parents, not by their peers or teachers. Because home schooled children do not interact with as many other children as non-home school children, many also are behind the social development curve.
It is a common myth that home educated students are socially under developed. Actually home educated students are provided with many opportunities to interact with kids and adults of all ages. Many of those opportunities come through volunteer work, employment, participation in academic and sport related programs. Some people voice a concern over whether or not home educated students get to deal with real life situations. These students are confronted with the same challenges and peer pressure as any other student in a public or private institution. Perhaps one of the advantages is that they often have a strong support system in the home to discuss and confront the issues all teens deal with. Home educated students successfully enter the job market and college world with success, both academically and socially.
Public and private schools pose an advantage over home schooling in that they provide an opportunity to give social experience to students. By being around others, students learn important skills like leadership, respect, and relating to others. As such, public and private schools provide an advantage to home schooling.