More kids are home schooled than ever before; is the school system failing our children?
The number of children learning from home has jumped by 40%, with over 48,000 kids nationwide getting their education from home.
The most commonly cited reasons parents give for home schooling are related to mental health and the risk of exclusion.
Does it work?
Home schooling is a hotly debated topic. Issues surrounding child safety and lack of social interaction for children are common criticisms of the system.
But for a lot of children, home schooling can be an effective way to help vulnerable children learn in a more comfortable environment.
Mental health advocate and blogger, Kay, was home schooled.
“I had to be homeschooled when I was younger due to childhood psychosis. It made it near impossible to leave the house. I was very vulnerable and being left to my own devices at school was ill advised.
Learning from home one to one with a teacher meant that I was still able to access a basic education despite being really poorly at the time. Being homeschooled benefited my mental health at the time, but socially I was very far behind my peers. Not being able to practice those basic social skills and being around peers my age was very isolating.
However, being homeschooled gave me the flexibility to learn about more of what I was interested in. Without being homeschooled for a period of time I wouldn’t have had access to an education at all.”
Lack of support
“I don’t feel that the system provided enough support for me. I feel that with faster intervention and student support, I may have been able to stay at school.
We’ve taken bigger strides in targeting mental health at schools, but student support services are still vastly underfunded.”
The government is introducing new guidance for home education, targeting the quality and safety issues surrounding home schooling.