Would You Homeschool Your Children?

by Joe on March 16, 2010

Making the decision to homeschool is usually a very personal and a hard decision to make. Esther and i are not parents yet and although it’s our desire to become parents at some point, i cannot talk on this subject as a parent, but i have varying opinions on this issue. Hence, i will come back to cross check these opinions when i get kids of my own. (CAUTION! The word KIDS is heavily used in this post to reference children). I also have close friends who took this path and actually withdrew their kids from public school to homeschool.

With this in mind, I asked my wife last night – when we get kids can we consider the possibility of homeschooling? The answer was a resounding NO! The NO answer may have changed my thought process, but for today i will discuss the financial implications of the decision to homeschool.

I also invite parents out there who have walked this path with their children to tell us why they chose that route and how this decision has affected them financially.

The Finances

To be able to take on homeschooling, it usually requires that the teaching parent quit his or her regular job unless they are able to work from home. And even when they can work from home, the amount of work that can be accomplished while providing educational instructions is very minimal.

This means that the family might have to learn to live on one income, and part of making this decision will require parents to sit down and do a their personal financial analysis. 
From a non parent view – If you are in huge debt this decision can be daunting because you not only want your kids to have good education but also a decent lifestyle.

If you quit your job to homeschool

  • You will no longer have 401k benefits from your employer- but you can open a Roth IRA account for your retirement savings.
  • You lose insurance benefits from your employer – hopefully your spouse’s employer offers the same insurance benefits. You can also subscribe to an individual family plan (it is expensive but you get a tax break).
  • In case your spouse is unable to continue working or supporting you due to disability, injury, lay-off or such life altering circumstances, you may have to go back to work. One way to atleast shield yourself – is getting a life insurance and a supplemental disability insurance.

The Time

 It is very hard to quantify the time parents spend with their children in terms of money.  I am of the opinion that the day we invent that system, we will start trading kids for money. That being said, to effectively homeschool your kids, you have to devote your time to it.  You will have to personally instruct, grade, do lesson plans, and may have to learn in order to teach. All this will take a good chunk of your time in a day (if not all day). But you have to answer the question – Is it a worthy trade-off?

The Dedication

As noted above, to sustain a homeschool program you’ve got to have the dedication and drive to do this every day.  Obviously as a parent-teacher you get (am assuming) a lot of time to play with your kids (during their breaks), but that in itself cannot be sufficient reason to sustain a homeschool program. Both parents need an internal drive to do this every day,  be supportive of each other and appreciative of the time that the teaching spouse spend teaching the kids.

What are your home school experiences?

Related Readings

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Peter March 16, 2010 at 10:30 am

My wife and I are expecting our first child, so we haven’t had the experience of home schooling a child. I can speak to it from the other end, however, as being a student who has been home schooled.

I was home schooled for 2-3 years during middle school years, and during those years I learned a lot more than I did during my public school days – for sure. I just wasn’t able to sneak by or be lazy. If I had I would have been in deep trouble with mom.

Studies have shown that home schooled children usually prosper because they’re receiving one on one attention most of the time, and they’re able to get more out of their learning during the day.

There are some people that say that home-schooled children aren’t socialized as well, which i think is silly. These days there are homeschool co-ops where homeschoolers come together and have days where they’ll bring in guest speakers, college professors and others to help instruct the children. In addition they’re usually able to participate in school sports programs, as I did.

I think homeschooling is a great option that will give your child a great education. Of course it is a huge time investment, and you need to be reasonably well versed and able to teach your kids in a variety of topics. Not everyone is necessarily equipped to do that.

Reply

Joe March 16, 2010 at 10:35 pm

@Peter, thanks for your perspective on this subject. Your experience as a homeschooled student was obviously a very positive one. The idea that homeschooled students are not ‘all rounded’ may have been initial concerns for people who saw this as a new concept. I think homeschooling has matured over the period of time that it is absurd to suggest that homeschooled kids aren’t well socialized. Also from what i have heard .. student’s who are homeschooled tend to advance faster to the next grade work than their peers in public school. I have also heard that it “depends on the school system that you are in.. some public school system are better than private schools.” All these opinions make the decision for parents even more complex.

@ Arthur -Yes! Homeschooling gives parents the freedom to teach their kids what is relevant for academic and filter out irrelevant junk.

Reply

Arthur @ Financialbondage.org March 16, 2010 at 3:41 pm

My sister in-law does it. Its not easy, it is hard work. But the kids are learning probably more than they would learn in public school… that is one plus. And they are not being taught things that may go against their Christian beliefs and values. In the public schools, you get crammed down your throat whatever the state and school officials decide that your kids should learn, and it is often not appropriate stuff. Certainly not Godly. These days I am not even sure you can mention God or Jesus in school which is sad.

Reply

Erin February 24, 2011 at 1:52 am

I homeschool our 2 oldest children to rid the cost of private schools. We live in Los Angeles and our local public school is not a option for us. Ever since we became parents we’ve lived off of my husbands income so this wasn’t a huge change for us. Over the years we’ve gotten into a great amount of debt. Homeschooling freed up over $1,000 a month easily to put toward the debt. Our children are busier now that they aren’t “in school.” With our afternoons free they can explore their interests and get plenty of interaction with other children. They are each a grade level ahead of peers. I’m not saying we don’t have our bad days and Mom looses her patience. It’s not easy being teacher and Mom. My husband is a lot happier now. He doesn’t fret about the monthly tuition bills, constant fund raisers, uniforms etc. Will we homeschool for the long haul? I don’t think so. We are taking it year by year right now. Homeschooling has given us the extra funds to pay our debt down faster.

Reply

Joe February 24, 2011 at 11:29 pm

Thanks Erin for your perspective on this subject of homeschooling. It’s also exciting to read that by adopting this program you were able to free up some cash to pay up some debts. Kudos – way to go by all means it sounds like you are the winner. You are kicking debt off, you get to spend the time with your kids, they are ahead of their peers.
Awesome!!

Reply

Fazer Dinheiro Na Internet Comentes July 26, 2013 at 12:24 am

I really like what you guys are usually up too.
This kind of clever work and reporting! Keep up the excellent works guys I’ve included you guys to my own blogroll.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: