I’m guessing that most parents who are Home Schooling (HS) their children have wondered what research says about how home schooling stacks up against traditional classroom based education. When I attempted to find definitive and sound studies, which, compared the two approaches, I found a great deal of controversy and few clear answers.
After reviewing numerous articles, my conclusion is that Home Schooling compares favorably with Traditional Schooling. The catch is that there is very little in the way of studies that followed standard research methodology, thus limiting the value of their conclusions.
While one study showed HS students scoring 38% higher than TS students, the study was not based on a random sample of each population. Another study showed that HS students at a Catholic University slightly exceeded the academic performance of TS students. Once again, a limited population was measured, making it hard to draw broad conclusions.
According to my sample reading of the available research, indications are that HS provides students with educational opportunities equal to or possibly greater than TS. Perhaps one of the truest statements I read was a former HS student who said, “Well structured and supported HS programs will lead to a high level of student success; however, non structured and poorly supported HS programs will likely not lead to success for the student.”
Stay tuned, since I have not given up hope of finding new studies that will shed more light on this topic. Parents are one of the best sources of measuring their child’s success and should be part of future studies.
IEM Education Consultant