Am I qualified to homeschool?
Perhaps one of the weightiest questions prospective homeschooling parents find themselves faced with is whether or not they are qualified to homeschool their children, particularly if neither parent possesses a teaching degree. We have been conditioned to believe that those individuals with teaching certificates are experts, and therefore better able to meet the educational needs of our children. Research, however, paints a very different picture.¹
Points to Ponder
Here are a few facts about parental qualifications to consider.
According to a variety of research, homeschooled students score 15-30 points above their peers on achievement tests, regardless of the educational level of their parents.
Having a teaching degree is not necessary to successfully homeschool your children. There is little difference in the achievement of homeschooled students whose parents held a teaching certificate and those whose parents did not.
Having spent the most time with their children, parents are uniquely qualified to homeschool them. Parents are often aware of learning preferences that may take a classroom teacher several weeks or months to discover.
If a parent does not feel comfortable teaching a particular subject, they have several options to provide these courses. Parents can take advantage of co-ops, online courses, or video courses, to name a few.
Homeschooling parents of all backgrounds often learn right alongside their children. Creating an environment that encourages a love of learning is the most important goal in homeschooling–one that can be provided by any parent.
A Few More Thoughts
While most parents considering homeschooling question their ability to properly teach their own children, the parent’s educational level or possession of a teaching degree causes very little difference in the achievement of their students. Parents are qualified to teach their own children because, having spent more time with them than anyone else has, they are the experts when it comes to their own children.