New York Homeschooler’s Commentary in Wall Street Journal

I was thrilled to see an article recently in the opinion/commentary section of the Wall Street Journal by a high-school aged homeschooler. Ms. Andreades titled the article, I’m Homeschooled-Hold the Pity, Please. Ms. Andreades’ article highlights the often misguided thinking that if you are homeschooled you are missing out on education and socialization opportunities. The Andreades family being middle class in New York City decided to homeschool because they did not wish to limit the education opportunities of their daughter based on their zip code. Not living in an affluent area of the city would have kept their daughter out of a good school district and private school was unaffordable. Homeschooling was the path they chose to take in order to aid their daugher in pursuing her passions and be better prepared for college and a career.

Ms. Andreades uses her day to day life and activities to show how well socialized she is as well. Taking ballet and karate, organizing church retreats and attending acting auditions in the city are just a few of the ways she not only meets and interacts with people her own age but also people of all ages and backgrounds. Without the flexibility of a homeschooling schedule, Ms. Andreades states that she would not be able to get a focused education and also pursue real world skills and jobs. This young woman also cites statistical research done in 2009 by the Home Education Research Institute that tracked nearly 12,000 home-schoolers finding that on average they scored 34 to 39 points higher on standardized test than their public school counterparts. As for socialization, a 2012 report by Lisa Bergstrom of the University of Wisconsin found that many home-schooled children surpass public school children their age in all areas of development and are successful in college and in careers.

If you are a homeschooling parent then none of these statistics will surprise you, because you see the results daily with your children. What was so inspiring was to have Ms. Andeades speak her mind publicly and in a text that was concise and polished. When I find home-schooled young adults willing to share their feelings and become advocates for their lifestyle, it fuels my devotion to preserve the freedom to choose to self-educate. The following is a list of well known home-schooled icons Ms. Andreades said inspired her:  Agatha Christie, Thomas Edison, Venus and Serena Williams, Whoopi Goldberg, Sandra Day O’Connor and Charlie Chaplin.

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