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"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." - Nelson Mandela

Homeschooling Growing In Favor Among Blacks

By Carole Hornsby Haynes, Ph.D. |  October 27, 2015  National Center for Policy Analysis

Many hoped that the 1954 U.S. Supreme Court case, Brown v. Board of Education, would bring equalization of academic opportunity for black children.  However, the federal government’s solution to end “separate but equal” education has had disappointing results.

This has resulted in a growing movement among black parents actively seeking alternatives to public schools for a better education and safer environment for their children.

In a recent national survey conducted by Brilliant Corners Research and Strategies (BCRS), black parents overwhelmingly favored school choice.  When asked about their preference for school choice,

  • 56 percent preferred to include private schools and  
  • just over 25 percent preferred public school choice only.

In a related question on the BCRS survey,

  • 78 percent favored using state education tax dollars,
  • 72 percent favored public charter schools, and
  • 70 percent favored vouchers that can be used in a private or parochial school.

One alternative to public schools that is growing in favor is home-based education.  According to the Home Education Research Institute, black families are becoming one of the fastest growing segments of Americans who are homeschooling their children, comprising more than 10 percent of the 2.2 million.

A research study, “African-American Homeschool Parents’ Motivations for Homeschooling and Their Black Children’s Academic Achievement,” (Journal of School Choice, 9:71-96, 2015) showed that the reasons for home-based education by black parents were similar to those of homeschooling parents in general.  The top five reasons were

  • to provide religious or moral instruction;
  • to accomplish more academically;
  • to transmit the parents’ values, beliefs, and worldview;
  • to customize each child’s education; and
  • to provide religious or moral instruction different from that of the public school.

The results in academic achievement for students in the study were remarkable.  In comparing the scores of black homeschooled children to the national averages for all students in institutional public schools, they scored at the following percentiles: reading (68th), language (50th), math (50th), and core subjects (58th).

In comparing the scores of black homeschooled students to those of black public school students in the study, the homeschooled performed far better.

When parents without teaching certificates can do a better job of educating their children than public schools, the message is clear.  Billions of taxpayers’ money are being wasted on public education.  From the colonial era until about 1920, homeschooling was quite common.  With the failure of government schools to adequately educate our children, particularly African-Americans, homeschooling is certain to continue growing in popularity.

Copyright 2015 Carole Hornsby Haynes, Ph.D. All rights reserved

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