Homeschooling vs public schools – the debate regarding which mode of education is better for children, has been doing the rounds for a while. While homeschooling might appear as a more cost-effective option, it is important to analyse the pros and cons of the same in order to make a more informed decision. Hence, let us delve right into it.
What is Homeschooling?
Homeschooling entails educating a child within the confines of one’s home. Also known as home education, homeschooling is mostly opted by parents who do not want to experience separation anxiety and wish to impart an informal mode of education to their children. Although considered an alternative form of education, homeschooling is one of the oldest forms of education and was prevalent in the Victorian era (1837-1901).
Homeschooling – Advantages
- One-On-One Teaching
The average size of a class is between 35-70, depending on the school and the region. Some parents might feel that a large class size can hinder a one-on-one educative experience for their child. Homeschooling resolves the problem of divided attention, wherein the teacher has the liberty to dwell on a topic longer, as there is no pressure of completing the syllabus within a stipulated time-frame.
- Control Over Curriculum
Curriculum plays an important role in shaping a child’s knowledge base – the best primary schools in Gurgaon try to incorporate a wide range of interesting topics into their curriculum. However, due to practical constraints, it is impossible to personalise the curriculum according to every child’s needs and preferences. Homeschooling allows you to introduce topics that are traditionally not a part of public school curricula while presenting the opportunity to emphasise on the subjects in which your child expresses singular interest. For instance, English or History can take up a major chunk of your teaching process if your child enjoys these subjects. Some parents also inculcate core family values in their children via homeschooling processes. A combination of online modules and textbook reading can also be used.
- Parent-Child Bonding
Homeschooling allows parents to spend more time with their child every day, which helps foster a deeper connection. By spending productive time together, parents can teach their children manners and accepted social behaviour along with the importance of personal boundaries.
Homeschooling – Disadvantages
- Expensive in the Long Run
It is a common misconception that homeschooling is more cost-effective than enrolling your child in a reputed educational institute, say, for instance, a public school in Gurgaon, as the former does not include transportation, food, tuition, and miscellaneous costs. However, in reality, when one chooses to educate their child at home, career ambitions for parents tend to take a back seat. By virtue of expending all their time and resources on their child’s education, parents are unable to maintain stable jobs. Also, homeschool tutors are less cost-effective in comparison with school fees in the long run.
- Lack of Structure
Public schools are decisively more structured than homeschool curriculum, as school curricula are carefully-crafted and inclusive of diverse aspects that lead to a child’s holistic growth. The teaching methodologies of reputed schools have stood the test of time, and they also imbibe credible sources of information and standardised assessments. On the other hand, a homeschooling parent has limited resources and will also find it difficult to adhere to a set structure. Lack of structure and direction might confuse children and hamper interest and efficiency.
- Limited Coverage of Subjects
Public school curricula cover a wide range of subjects, ranging from mathematics and pure algebra to literature and linguistics. Due to an exposure to a wide spectrum of subjects, children are able to make more informed decisions while choosing their areas of interest later in life. While homeschooling warrants more flexibility, it is impossible to introduce your child to subjects of all kinds. Moreover, tutors and parents might not have an in-depth knowledge of complex subjects, such as calculus or history. After all, limited or misleading information can be damaging in the long run.
- Absence of Skilled and Trained Teachers
In most cases, parents do not have a first-hand experience in delivering education. Schools offer quality education with the help of a faculty that comprises trained individuals who are adept at educating children and propelling them towards growth and development. Also, it is necessary for children to spend some time apart from their parents, as this allows room for the development of certain personality traits and hands-on skills.
- No Socialisation
When a child is educated at home, they have little to no interaction with kids of their own age. The experiences of school-going children differ vastly as exposure to social situations at schools allows a child to develop behavioural, social and interpersonal skill sets. Every child should experience class trips, group projects, having lunch with friends and other fun activities that are a part of school education.
To settle the debate of which mode of education is better, statistics are indicative of the fact that a public school education is more beneficial and effective for a child’s cumulative development. While homeschooling also holds the ability to churn out well-rounded individuals, public school education is a safer and better way to inculcate knowledge and good manners in your child. Make an informed decision based on what works best for you.