Homeschooling: The Research
Did you know that 11% of homeschooled children don’t have a parent that speaks English? Or that the number of families citing religious reasons for homeschooling is declining? Or that homeschooled students have a math gap? Are you wondering just who homeschools—and why? Keep abreast of the latest research with these research summaries!
In “A Meaningful Measure of Homeschool Academic Achievement,” published in the peer-reviewed academic journal Other Education in July 2020, Dr. Chelsea McCracken and Dr. Rachel Coleman compared homeschooling outcomes with those of children in public school. McCracken and Coleman looked at around 195,000 test scores for students homeschooled in Alaska from 2003 to 2014. These students were enrolled in programs that allowed their parents to receive public reimbursements for educational expenses while homeschooling independently, as explained in a “Who ‘Counts’ as Homeschooled?” in the same journal.
The study’s primary findings were as follows:
- Homeschooled students who were white or middle- or upper-class had lower scores across the board than similar students in traditional public schools.
- Homeschooled students in all categories scored worse in math than their peers in public schools, while the results for reading were more mixed.
- Where homeschooled students performed well, low income students, students of color, and students with disabilities were primarily responsible for the higher scores.
You can read more about these findings here.
Summaries of the Research
- What Is Homeschooling?
- Homeschooling by the Numbers
- Who Homeschools?
- Motivations for Homeschooling
- Academic Achievement
- What about Socialization?
- Homeschool Outcomes
- What Scholars Say
- A History of Homeschooling
Surveys on Homeschooling
by Dr. Rachel Coleman
- Left in Limbo: Kentucky’s Report on Homeschooling
- Homeschooling and Child Abuse: A Response to Ray
- Should We Be Concerned about Low Homeschool SAT-Taking?
- The Alaska Data and Homeschool Academics
- The Homeschool Math Gap
by Dr. Chelsea McCracken
- Opacity in Data Reporting: Cardus 2012
- Choosing the Data that Supports Your Agenda: Ray 2010
- Homeschooling Outcomes or Sampling Problems? Ray 2003
- Correcting the Record: A Look at Rudner 1999
- Virginia’s Religious Exemption: Ray 1994
- Connecticut Study Finds High Rates of Past Child Welfare Reports (2018)
- Child Abuse, Homeschooling, and the CECANF Report (2017)
- NCES Data Points to Changing Homeschool Demographics (2017)
- Arkansas Data Contradicts HSLDA’s Claims (2017)
- New Homeschool Data Raises Questions about STEM Access (2016)
- Homeschool Transcripts and Diplomas in the Admissions Process (2014)
- Fruit Salad Fallacies (2014)