Fueled by the lockdowns, lagging public school test scores, and a leftwing curriculum, homeschooling is up by over 50% between 2018 and now. This is at a time when public school enrollment has dropped by 4%.
Far from just being about parents educating their own kids, homeschooling is at the heart of many new flexible learning models, from tutoring centers, microschool parent pods, hybrid options (where students spend part of the week at school and part at home), and charter schools where teachers offer some support but students learn from their parents at home.
A Washington Post survey of data from 32 states confirms that there are now somewhere between 2 and 3 million homeschooled children in the United States. That’s more than all kids in Catholic schools (1.7 million), and closing in on those in charters (3.7 million).
Here are the most interesting things about them:
In a 2012 federal survey, nearly 2 in 3 home-school parents listed a desire to provide religious instruction as a reason for homeschooling. That has now dropped to 34%, as concerns about school safety, academic rigor, and a rising number of special needs kids.
The parents of homeschoolers are about evenly divided between the two major parties and are very racially diverse. The share of homeschool parents who are white has fallen from about three-quarters in 2019 to just under half today – driven by an explosion of interest in the Hispanic community.
It’s a true bipartisan and multicultural trend.