How Homeschool Kids Measure Up

I saw this graphic shared, and expected it to make me feel a bit worthless, because none of my children are prodigies or geniuses. I feel like there is this stereotype that all homeschool kids have to blow their public school counterparts out of the water, academically speaking.

Well, it turns out that homeschooled kids do very, very well. I wouldn’t expect less of my children, no matter where they receive their education (and that may change from year to year). Still, it’s encouraging to see that most homeschooled kids tend to do much better than the average bear.

Honestly, I didn’t choose homeschool for my children because of the academics. I didn’t choose to homeschool them to protect them from the peer pressure and perceived dangers of public school. I didn’t choose homeschool because my religion demands it (it doesn’t, by the way). I didn’t choose it so I could give them a moral education–I can do that no matter where they go to school. I didn’t research homeschooling methods. I had never heard of Charlotte Mason, Classical Education, or Unschooling until very recently. I still know virtually nothing about any of the above. In fact, it wasn’t until after I started that I heard all the logical and statistical arguments in favor of homeschooling.

I chose to homeschool against my will. Against my “better judgment.” I did it because I knew, beyond doubt, that the Lord was asking me, personally, to do it for my children. I started out terrified, wound up tight, and knowing I would fail. Well, I haven’t failed after all, and I’ve loosened up considerably. We’re doing just fine. My kids are learning, we’re growing together, and I am growing as a mother and as a person in ways I never thought I would.

Now, I can’t imagine sending my children away from me for more hours in a week than Levi works. If we put them in school, there would be three full days a week that they didn’t see their father at all. That alone is plenty of reason to keep them home, in my book. And some days, if I’m being honest, that is the only reason I can cling to in perfect honesty as a reason not to quit. There may come a day when the Lord calls us to put our kids into a public school, but (in the words of Aragorn) it is not this day.

And these statistics encourage me. A little bit.

Homeschooled: How American Homeschoolers Measure Up

Why did you choose the academic path you chose for your kids? What are your favorite things about that path, and least favorite?

Grace & Peace,


12 thoughts on “How Homeschool Kids Measure Up

  1. Haha! We have a lot in common. 🙂 Even though schedule does play a part, my main reason for starting to homeschool is because I know that is what God is calling me to do for my kiddos. Like you, it’s pretty much against my will. I am the last person logically if you look at my education, temperament (and temper, lol), and discipline to successfully homeschool. I still feel like I’m going to spectacularly fail (this is only our second year and we have a 1st grader, a young “Kindergartner”, a toddler and an infant) but I know if we don’t, it’s because of God, so I’m trusting in Him to guide our year and help us make it through. 🙂

  2. This might sound elitist, but I figured I can provide a better education for my child than the public school system can. It wasn’t “academics” per se, but the individualized attention, the fact that the school system is designed for the “average student” and often fails the ones that don’t fit into that category whether they are ahead or behind. It fails the students that have a higher potential (than “average”) even more than it fails those with special needs. It squelches their enthusiasm because they get bored. I was so inspired by the idea of homeschooling that I believe it was a calling as well. I like that you can set the pace to the child’s needs. To be honest, though it is a lot of work, it is SO MUCH FUN! I remember that “playing school” was one of my favorite things when I was a child. Now I get to do it every day!

    • It doesn’t sound elitist at all, and the numbers validate your thoughts. I know that stuff NOW, but not when I first started. I agree that, as ill-equipped as I sometimes feel, my one-on-one attention has done far better for them than what they might have gotten otherwise.

      Homeschooling is now my favorite part of the day. 🙂

  3. It’s funny you posted this. Gabe was telling me yesterday that the question he hated the most (I didn’t realize he was even being asked it) was, “So, are you stupid or brilliant?” when people found out he was home schooled. His reply was, “Neither.”

    He has finished his schooling, and I am still not sure whether I failed him or not, but I can say I wouldn’t do it any other way. I am still going with Brie, Zoe, and beginning with Noah. I still get asked if I will home school the little ones.

    I think it would be cool if we could ever get to a place where how we raise/educate our kids is just how we do it, and the discussion wasn’t laced with judgement.

  4. Forgot to say, I chose homeschool because of failing public and private schools. No kidding, there was a gun in our tiny town K-12 school, 30 years ago. The end of it all for me!

  5. I am in the midst of making this decision myself. I always wanted to homeschool. As a former public school teacher I often was so frustrated by all of the kids that needed one on one time yet I so often just couldn’t get to them. I was excited by the idea of being able to teach my children at their own pace, exploring their individual interests. I also wanted to be able to provide a moral education that matches our beliefs. My oldest is still just a preschooler but I have him in public school because he is in special classes due to being on the autism spectrum. The school district provides therapy services as part of his IEP that we could never afford on our own. Still I see my three year old going off for full school days and I see him being stressed by it. I also occasionally hear him spout ideas that are contrary to our family values. I can handle these conversations and can use them as a learning time, but I wonder what ideas he might be picking up that he doesn’t talk about. I never thought I’d be one to send any of my children off to school during these formative first five years regardless of if we were to utilize the school system later, yet here we are. I’m not sure if God is speaking to me about pulling him now or if my doubts and guilty feeling about it all is just part of the postpartum depression I’m experiencing, so for now I’m mostly praying about it and seeking counsel. At the very least I think we need to reduce the amount of time he is in school because 3 is much too young to be chronically stressed out. (Not that any age is “old enough” for that.)

Comments are closed.