Who are home-schoolers?

July 5, 2019

Serious and well-reasoned criticism of the traditional school, current shortcomings and failure of the curriculum to meet the real requirements of higher education institutions encourage parents and students to seek alternatives to the traditional school.

Many parents ask the question: “If we hire tutors, if we ourselves help the child to learn the program that should be given at school, then … Why this school, then?” Pedagogical education is no longer a guarantee of high qualifications, the prestige of teaching is at a low level, teachers’ salaries are even more frustrating. All this inevitably affects the number of talented, young, qualified specialists in general education public schools. Based on all this, many parents consciously decided not to give their child to school.

Home-schooling and home-schoolers

The opportunity to learn the school curriculum outside of a general education institution is an established and well-established practice in many Western countries. For children and parents who have chosen this way of education there is a legal aspect and services, as well as the opportunity to pass test papers, exams and obtain a diploma of state education. In other words, it is a normal practice of individual learning, which often shows fantastic results.

Home schooling – a form of education that does not involve daily attendance at a general school, built on the mastery of the school curriculum through educational centers, tutors, family education, etc. It should be noted that there is no one type of education called home schooling, it is a set of programs and systems that have a common feature (distance, individual education, externship, etc.).

The situation is more complicated, our educational legislation is still in transition, there are no clear definitions or practices for modern forms of “home schooling”. The legal basis on which home-schoolers rely and signed international treaties.

Thus, there is a legal basis, but practically it is a rather complicated topic today. The fact is that there are two different approaches.

A system has been formed where the right to individual education is implemented as follows:

  • Home or individual education – when a student cannot attend school for medical reasons. But even in this case, it remains assigned to a general education institution, and teachers from the same school come to its home. In fact, this practice is state tutoring.
  • Externship – a special form of education, which involves freer attendance at school, on the basis of advance or critical delays in the school curriculum. However, only a specially formed commission can give such a conclusion.

As a result, in order to obtain the right to individual education, it is necessary to make a lot of efforts, to pass a special commission (medical or educational), to find a school that will agree to provide appropriate conditions. Is it worth saying that many officials are not interested in “extra work”, do not always understand the needs of individual citizens.

However, with the development of information and communication technologies, realizing the problems of the existing educational system, a new type of individual education appears.

Distance Education: 21st Century Home Schooling

A modern school with distance learning has an important difference – a new approach to learning. Instead of the daily pressure of a general education institution, a unified program and a lot of time, there comes a flexible and adaptive model of individual education.

This form provides daily individual lessons, lectures, working out the material in a freer form, using modern computer technologies. The child does not need to attend school, educational materials, teacher consultations, homework and lectures are available at any time via the Internet. The material passed is also recorded in electronic form and is available for checking and analyzing the student’s progress.

Thanks to this approach, more time can be allocated to each student individually, the programme can be adapted and interesting and specialized areas can be studied more thoroughly. Moreover, not every school can afford to learn several foreign languages, let alone practice with native speakers.

Certificate and Distance Education

Typically, such schools are implemented as private educational institutions that are licensed to operate. Pupils of such institutions take part in the school curriculum (and are often ahead of it) in exams.

As a result, they receive a diploma and, moreover, some schools offer their pupils the opportunity to obtain a certificate of education from partner schools. In addition to training, such schools may supervise sports sections, hobby groups and provide in-depth foreign language training.

Although such schools are usually fee-paying, this relieves parents of the burden of choosing and paying for tutors and purchasing additional teaching materials. From the very beginning, the pupil and parents have access to a large learning base with text, graphics, audio-video courses and interactive programmes. Separate preparation is attached to the graduating class.

Thus, it can be summarized that distance learning is a natural response and a step in educational development. Although these are still successes of individual projects, centres and schools, innovations are being actively implemented at all levels.

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