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More Statistics on Homeschooling
The increasing popularity of home schooling as an educational option has led it to become the subject of a growing body of research.
There are any number of reasons that parents choose to home school their children--better academic test results, poor public school environment, improved character/morality development, and objections to what is taught locally in public school are just a few of them. Home schooling is also an alternative for families living in isolated rural locations or living temporarily abroad.
A good deal of the research supports the conclusion that children benefit from home instruction in many ways. The Home School Legal Defense Association brought together much of the research on home schooling academics in Academic Statistics on Home Schooling. The document provides excerpts from national research from 13 different sources, state-level findings from seven states, and local research from four school districts. As the report points out in its closing, “These statistics point to one conclusion: home schooling works. Even many of the State Departments of Education, which are generally biased toward the public school system, cannot argue with these facts. Not only does home schooling work, but it works without the myriad of state controls and accreditation standards imposed on the public schools."
The U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics has issued two reports on home schooling. In August 2001, it issued the first comprehensive look at home schooling, called Homeschooling in the U.S.: 1999. Among its findings are that about 2 percent (about 850,000) American school-age children were home schooled in 1999. The report also lists common reasons for home schooling, including concern for a child's performance, safety concerns, faith-based concerns, and health issues. The report also addresses the demographics of people who home school.
The National Home Education Research Institute issued a report in 2011, 2.04 Million Homeschool Students in the United States in 2010. The report gathered data from multiple sources and concluded that the number of homeschooled students will continue to rise in the next 5 to 10 years.
Home schooling works well, according to the 1997 findings of Brian Ray, head of the National Home Education Research Institute (NHERI), a home school research organization affiliated with the Home School Legal Defense Association. Among his findings in Home Education Across the United States is that a parent’s education level does not adversely affect a home schooler's instruction, but it does adversely affect the education of a public school student. In addition the facts from Brian Ray’s study demonstrate success. His findings note that home school students are very social and engaged in a wide range of activities outside the home. These students are competent users of technology, manage their time well, and are well prepared for their academic or work future.