Research Against Homeschooling

Kelly Matzen of Parenting Touches recently wrote an article titled Hold On to Your Kids: Research Against Homeschooling.

She was contemplating homeschooling and wanted to find the cold, hard facts.  The problem is that she was not able to find research against homeschooling so she went over the pros and cons.

While the pros are many and are explained well, I wanted to go over her listed cons.  She touches on socialization, but admits that there is no research to back up the commonly held idea that homeschoolers are social misfits.  She admits that homeschooling could lead to mommy burnout, but suggests that it may not be too different than getting children up and out the door in the morning, picking them up from school, and homework struggles.  Money was a listed con because most homeschooling families are one income families.  Most American families live on two incomes so deciding to homeschool means quite a bit of schedule juggling or cutting back on your lifestyle.  The other con listed is judgement from others.  I’ve been homeschooling three years now and this is a common occurrence.  Once someone discovers my children are schooled at home it is commonplace to hear advice and more advice on what I should be doing.  Judgement does come with the turf.

With no research cited against homeschooling, why is there such negativity regarding it?  Our society values fitting in.  Our society values money.  Our society values popularity.  Those are not values I wish my children to possess.


  1. I do not homeschool, so I don’t have a defensive position. But I wanted to share with you that recently I met a young man (mid-20’s, I think) working at a diaper drive our church held. After we had talked quite a bit, and I was thinking how social and cool he was (not in a flirty way – I am 41 and married), I found out he was one of 8 kids and had been homeschooled all the way. He had a college degree and currently was working in a retail job, but wants to be a full time missionary.

    So, yes I believe a well-adjusted person can come from a large family, home-schooled environment. I think someone should do a study on the percent of adults with social issues who come from public school background vs. homeschooled.

  2. We begin our third year of homeschooling and to my surprise I have NEVER had a negative comment about it. Sure, I had questions from people, of course – the same questions I had before I began to read about homeschooling (socialization, advanced classes, the usual). But no judgment and no unsolicited advice. On the contrary, I find my (non-homeschooling) environment supportive of our choice. All they say is that it must be really hard juggling job and homeschooling (which it is).
    Maybe this is unusual. But everybody readily accepts my explanation that my children were not challenged in school and did not learn enough.
    Maybe I’m just lucky?

  3. I am graduating one this year, and starting one this year in “1st Grade” – a loose reference because people seem to want one. 🙂 Never ceases to amaze me how people try to discredit it with their skewed priority reasons. I agree with you, my values are completely different. It IS possible to shelter too much and isolate too much, but those are pitfalls that can be avoided. Those often happen when people have a protectionist motive for homeschool rather than a proactive positive one. My motives have changed alot as I’ve grown older and less fearful, but I still believe it’s the best thing for my kids and will give them a really big advantage in the long run because their little minds will not have been pushed into the same box as everyone else.

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