Frustrated by the failures of public schools, families worldwide are choosing to educate their children at home.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE / PRURGENT
Gray, TN, October 6, 2010 — Do a little research about the reasons so many parents with special needs children are choosing to educate their children at home, and you’ll discover that most are doing so out of a sense of desperation rather than religious convictions or the pursuit of higher academic achievement.
“Parents of children with special needs often turn to homeschooling only as a last resort,” according to Lisa Rivero, author of The Homeschooling Option: How to Decide When It’s Right for Your Family. And the popularity of this trend is not limited to families with disabled kids; parents of gifted children are pulling their children out of public schools too. Carrie Winstanley, Principal Lecturer at Roehampton University in London and author of “Too Cool for School? Gifted Children and Homeschooling,” suggests that “families who homeschool gifted children are typically doing so not out of religious conviction . . . but simply out of pragmatic necessity. . . . [They] tend to come to homeschooling only gradually and reluctantly, usually after repeated frustrations with school systems.” Initiators of another recent online survey concluded: “The majority of these [homeschooling] families pulled their child out of school because of a felt sense that the child’s unique needs were not being adequately addressed. . . . As one mother put it, ‘We . . . have been left with no other acceptable option.’ ”
A recent survey conducted by Learning Abled Kids founder Sandy Cook indicated that 38% of the homeschooled students surveyed had special education needs. That percentage is almost three times higher than the percentage of public school students being served in special education programs!
The benefits of home education are obvious: parents are far more motivated to help their own children overcome obstacles successfully—intellectual, physical, and emotional obstacles; homeschooling can easily accommodate varying maturity levels and selectively cater to a child’s strengths and weaknesses; the distractions and sensory bombardment that accompany a classroom setting, as well as the challenges of numerous transitions throughout the school day, all can be greatly reduced in a home environment; and “labeling” can be avoided entirely, thus preserving the dignity of a child far more successfully.
So, how will these brand-new homeschooling families be adequately equipped to carry out their mission? Desperation may be an effective motivation to educate one’s own children at home, but that’s just the first step. What’s next? The Old Schoolhouse® LLC (TOS), a leading source of homeschooling resources worldwide, is aggressively responding to that need. Owners Gena and Paul Suarez “are thrilled that more families are seeing the unparalleled benefits of home education.” They “are committed to serve and equip families with special needs children, brand-new homeschoolers, and veteran homeschoolers.”
In response to a recent survey by The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, Laurene Wells summarized the situation this way: “When a homeschooling parent has a child with special needs, be that dyslexia, autism, or cerebral palsy, they can create the ideal nutritional, educational, and psychological environment in their home to best meet the specific needs of their child. . . . For those who are both willing and able to choose homeschooling . . . , the rewards far exceed the cost. The rewards last a lifetime.”
As more and more parents of children with special needs realize the benefits of home education, it’s likely that the choice to homeschool will continue to gain momentum. Will the current homeschool community seize the opportunity to come alongside these courageous families who are making significant sacrifices to educate their children at home?
We hope so. After all, the rewards last a lifetime.
About The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine: Soon to celebrate their 10-year anniversary, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine is recognized as the premier magazine for homeschoolers. Their Winter 2010 issue will focus on the future of technology, classical education, preschool, foreign languages, handwriting, support groups, and grammar. This professional publication offers approximately 200 pages of information, inspiration, and encouragement to homeschooling families around the world in each quarterly issue. TOS offers more than 7,000 homeschool products in their Schoolhouse Store, including free webinar classes and weekly newsletters. Their newest product, Homeschooler Bundles™, was specifically designed to support brand-new homeschoolers, including special needs homeschoolers, with a generous assortment of handpicked resources that offer information, guidance, and encouragement.
View a sample issue of the magazine here: http://www.thehomeschoolmagazine-digital.com/thehomeschoolmagazine/sample/#pg1.
Paul or Gena Suarez, Publishers
The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC