Home-based education is gaining traction in the nation’s capital; the number of families choosing to homeschool their kids in the Washington, DC area has grown by roughly one-third over the past two years.
Ethan Reedy, president of the DC Home Educators Association, says there are several reasons for the growth of homeschooling.
“The first is a demographic change,” Reedy said. “More young families are moving into the city. They are tired of commuting and spending a large part of every day on the road. They want more time with their families.”
Reedy says more young parents are enthusiastic about the idea of trying homeschooling because they aren’t satisfied with the performance of the public schools.
“[Young parents] aren’t impressed with the educational situation or the social situations,” Reedy says. “These are parents coming from all sorts of backgrounds who see homeschooling as an opportunity to provide unique educational and social opportunities for their kids. By now they’ve seen the track record of homeschooling. They probably know some older children or even adults who were homeschooled and realize that homeschooling can lay the foundation for a successful and well-balanced life. That track record they see gives them the confidence to try it for themselves.”
Reedy says he’s confident the trend will continue.
“I don’t think it will cause the closing of public schools because all of the children are home, but I do think that the percentage of kids in the city who are homeschooled will begin to match the numbers you see in suburban or rural areas,” Reedy said.
Chris Neal ([email protected]) writes from New York, New York.
Image by Jimmie.
Michael Alison Chandler, “Number of homeschooled-students increases in the District,” The Washington Post, October 10, 2015: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/number-of-home-schooled-students-increases-in-the-district/2015/10/10/cb2e3e44-6e9c-11e5-9bfe-e59f5e244f92_story.html