According to numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2010 there were approximately 54 million children living in the country between the ages of 5 and 17. Based on the numbers of kids who are home schooled, that means 1 out of every 25 does not attend public schools. There are also other children in Christian schools not included as part of the public system.
Some children are a part of an “underground” community because the families face compulsory attendance laws. The parents don’t register their children and attempt to school them on their own.
This estimated 4% of America’s children still have needs to go on to higher education, no matter how they get a diploma. There are varying opinions on the merits of home schooling, and valid arguments can be made both for and against.
Some home schooled children display a much broader grasp of their required studies than many of those in the same age group who attend public school. The quality of education for home taught children has climbed as the numbers being taught have increased.
If your children are home schooled, you obviously have your reasons for taking this route. As a parent, it requires dedication and hard work to provide a quality education at home, and preparing for college is a serious part of the home schooling process.
Probably the greatest challenge that faces the home schooled child is the vast difference from the atmosphere at home and that in college. The way a parent prepares a child has a great deal to do with how successful the college experience will be.
Thirty years ago there were only around 20,000 home schooled children. Thanks to the increase in numbers of the home schooled, the internet emerged as a highly used teaching tool. Today parents are better equipped with the right resources and information to present a more structured learning environment and program.
Parents also must educate themselves as to what is required for their home school child to be accepted into college. The role becomes that not only of parent and teacher, but guidance counselor as well. Fortunately, information is available to guide parents as far as courses required for certain diplomas, testing requirements, and more.
Preparing a home schooled child academically and socially for college is a challenge, but the well prepared parent does have the advantage of more one on one time with their student; home school does provide an impressive “teacher/student” ratio.
Also, many home school support groups are available which create opportunities for home schooled children to interact with others and participate in group activities for a more well-rounded education.
A child schooled at home has just as much chance to succeed as any other child in college academics, if the parents have done their job right.