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Homeschooling Is a Defective Form of Learning

A lot of parents and learners are continuing to embrace homeschooling and shunning conventional learning, fueling debates on its effectiveness. Families have adopted to homeschooling due to individual reasons such as poor quality in local schools and bullying concerns. Moreover, increasing diversity and increased use of the internet have led to information networks under distinct homeschooling groups. However, the authenticity of homeschooling is being doubted due to its nature of hindering social development. There are doubts on whether children who learn without socializing with their peers will develop functional skills or learn to live in a contemporary society full of diversity. Moreover, a high portion of society is uncertain about the ability of parents and tutors to observe all the requirements pertaining to quality education. Homeschooling is a defective type of learning and should be discouraged.

Homeschooling resurgence was witnessed in 1970 after John Holt, a school reform supporter and educational theorist, complained that the conventional classroom was oppressive and only turned children into compliant employees and called for liberation (Jeynes and Robinson 83). At that time, home education was legal but the parents were supposed to have teaching licenses. In the 1980s, individuals such as fundamentalist and evangelical Christians entered the movement and termed schools satanic hothouses. Local public schools officials were against the idea and homeschoolers petitioned for changes of law to allow homeschooling. By the late 90s, many states accommodated homeschooling and the issue evolved into Christian rights and conservative religious concept. In 1983, Michael Farris formed the Home School Legal Defense Association and homeschoolers started working with local officials. Currently, some parents prefer homeschooling as information can easily be retrieved from the internet.

One of the arguments supporting homeschooling is that it allows individualized learning. Parents can personalize the learning to fit the ability, needs, and interests of the child (Dlamini et al. 112). For example, a parent can ensure there is more playtime, allocate more time to subjects in which the child shows interest or less confidence, and take a rest when the child is sick. Homeschooling efficiency is achieved as it is not mandatory to teach as per the national curriculum or follow the normal timings that make a school day. Building real-life skills such as budgeting, volunteering, cleaning, and cooking can also be incorporated. Such cannot be achieved in a conventional classroom as tutors have limited time to address the needs of each child, leaving some learners struggling to understand the concept.

Homeschooling supports social development compared to a traditional classroom. In their research, De Carvalho and Skipper (513) note that “parents viewed socialization as an important part of their role in home education, and thus facilitated many socializing opportunities…” A family with robust shared values and close family relationships can impact the same to their children through homeschooling. They can ensure learners have less dependency on their peers and are not exposed early to bullying, sexual activities, alcohol, and drugs. There will be less pressure to fit in or fear of missing out and there are high changes students observe moral values instead of copying their peers. Furthermore, children can take part in events in their local community such as volunteer groups, sports clubs, or scouts, among others, and partner with local homeschooling groups.

In addition, there is a lot of freedom in homeschooling classes as opposed to conventional classes which have a lot of rules and regulations. Parents can educate their kids anytime, anywhere, and with the method, they feel it’s more efficient (Williams 1). Parents can develop a unique timetable, curriculum, and teaching methods. For instance, a parent or a tutor can take the kids to a museum when teaching about national history or can skip what the learner already knows to save time. This cannot be achieved in a normal class as the teacher must teach at the pace of the whole class.

On the other hand, homeschooling is termed ineffective due to the many commitments involved. It involves a lot of energy as parents must hire tutors and ensure they are teaching as expected (Dlamini et al. 114). Parents must engage tutors with valid certificates and prepare their children to take examinations. Other duties involve organizing trips, planning and implementing lessons, and ensuring the lessons are as per the requirements of the local authorities. Furthermore, there is limited help availed to homeschooling and the advice given by local authorities is not enough. Although there are limitless internet resources, there is no guarantee that the information is quality. Such disadvantages make it difficult to achieve a functional homeschooling program, casting doubts on the efficiency of the system.

In addition, homeschooling is attached to significant costs to ensure it is efficient, which most parents may not be in a position to meet. Parents are prompted to meet costs such as purchasing computers, stationery, and textbooks or expenses associated with educational visits, sports activities, and examinations. Moreover, they must pay examination centers to allow their children to take their exams there. The parents cannot rely on financial assistance from authorities as it may not cover all the expenses. With such expenses, parents can comprise and fail to pay some important costs, a move that lowers the authenticity of the learning schemes.

Another downside is the loss of experiences required for children to develop socially. Learners miss out on interacting with their peers as they spend a lot of their time at home. Abuzandah (1068) notes that “students lack adequate social skills that are needed to navigate through life…” Limited association means that such children will have few friends and less or no experience of how to interact with individuals from diverse groups. Homeschooling can also lead to an environment where children grow up misinformed, intolerant, and lacking comprehension of societal values. Homeschooled children miss out on opportunities such as taking part in sports leagues, reward and recognition schemes, and work experience schemes present in the conventional education system. Failure to pass through an environment that offers such experiences can be detrimental in the future as it will lead to adults lacking social skills.

Homeschooling is ineffective due to its inability to create a balance between school and home as it is difficult to separate the home and school environment. Attempts to keep the balance and structure need a lot of planning, focus, and self-discipline. Also, learning at home poses distractions that affect the learning routine. Effective learning needs parents to go an extra mile such as making special rooms for learning and setting strict rules to discourage interruptions and create an environment that mimics regular school time. Even with such settings, it is difficult to bar distractions and well-structured strategies may fail due to the home environment. Failure to balance between home and school can result in an unhealthy routine that does not support learning.

Although there are various negatives associated with homeschooling, some of its advantages should be utilized in the current educational system. For instance, the availability of countless learning materials on the internet and other educational sites makes it easier to get valid information. Moreover, it helps achieve a proper teacher-to-student ratio as a teacher is responsible for a few students, increasing the connection between them. Furthermore, the bodies in charge of education can develop robust policies and directives on how homeschooling can be done more effectively. They can come up with a site where parents can download the curriculum, learning materials, and assessments. As such, improvements on the current homeschooling system can improve its effectiveness and eliminate any loopholes currently being witnessed.

In summary, homeschooling has various downsides which raise concerns about its efficiency. Some of its disadvantages include a lot of requirements such as hiring tutors, ensuring tutors have valid certificates, lesson planning and implementation, and organizing trips. Moreover, it is costly as parents must purchase learning resources and it makes it challenging for children to develop socially as they do not interact with other learners. However, it is associated with positive attributes such as individualized learning and a lot of freedom as the tutors can come up with unique timetables. Currently, homeschooling is becoming a trend and there is a higher likelihood of defining future learning and teaching designs. In this case, educational institutions should prepare to accommodate homeschooling as a central education element and create a body to oversee its efficiency. There is also a need to introduce guidelines to direct tutors and parents on how to achieve effective classes away from the conventional classrooms.

Works Cited

Abuzandah, S. Social Skills for Homeschooling Students. Creative Education, vol.11, 2020, pp. 1064-1072. doi: 10.4236/ce.2020.117078.

De Carvalho, E., and Skipper, Y. “We’re not just sat at home in our pyjamas!”: a thematic analysis of the social lives of home educated adolescents in the UK. Eur J Psychol Educ. vol. 34, 2019, pp. 501–516.

Dlamini, N., Maharaj, P., & Dunn, S. Home-Schooling in South Africa: Adapting to the New Normal of Providing Education. Perspectives in Education, vol. 39, no. 1, 2021 pp. 106- 121.

Jeynes, William, and David Robinson. International Handbook of Protestant Education. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands, 2012. Print.

Williams, Sally. ‘School is very oppressive.’ Why Home-schooling is on the Rise. The Guardian, 3 Nov. 2018, home-schooling. Accessed 24th Jan 2022.


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