Homeschooling in Texas

  • Homeschooling in Texas was solidified as a legal alternative to public school through the 1994 Texas Supreme Court decision Leeper vs Arlington ISD.
  • TEA Data:
    • Nearly 25,000 students withdraw from public schools to homeschool each year in TX. Since 1998, this number has increased 7% annually on average. All total, the TEA reports 353,000 students who withdrew from public school to homeschool between 1998-2018. These numbers measure only students in grades 6-12 and do not include students who began homeschooling organically. These numbers include both charter school and traditional ISD withdrawal data. 
    • Top Counties from 2018 (This does *not* including Charter school data. Charter schools are more difficult to obtain local numbers for, although that is being developed):
      • HARRIS: 2,356 
      • BEXAR: 1,557 
      • TARRANT: 809 
      • MONTGOMERY: 739 
      • DALLAS: 649 
      • TRAVIS: 595 
      • WILLIAMSON: 517 
      • COLLIN: 456 
      • GALVESTON: 389 
      • BRAZORIA: 388
  • Extracurricular activities was cited the most by Texas homeschoolers as the type of support/opportunity that they most needed better access to. Lower-income families and rural families were more likely than others to choose this option. THSC 2019 Survey.

 

Homeschool Growth Nationwide

  • Homeschooling is growing between 2-8% per year, it is the fastest-growing form of education in the U.S. (public school growth has been 1% over the last 10 years. Ed. Data.org). NHERI.
  • There are approximately 2.5 million homeschool students in the United States. NHERI
  • Homeschooling saves taxpayers approximately 27 billion per year. NHERI.
  • A recent survey showed that 40% of registered voters were more likely to enroll their children in a homeschool or a virtual school once the coronavirus lockdows are lifted. Real Clear Opinions

 

Homeschool demographics

  • Approximately 41% of homeschool families are minorities. 26% are Hispanic and 8% are black. The black community appears to be the fastest-growing segment of homeschooling. NCES, pg 28.
  • Approximately 21% of homeschool students live in households below the poverty line. NCES, pg 28.
  • Approximately 45% of students live in homes where parents have a bachelor’s degree or higher. NCES, pg 28.
  • Homeschooling families spend approximately $600 per student per year on education. Public school students average more than $11,000 per year. NHERI.

 

Reasons to homeschool

  • When citing the most important reason that they chose to homeschool:
    •  34% cited concern with the school environment, such as safety, drugs, or negative peer pressure.
    • 17% cited dissatisfaction with academic instruction at other schools.
    • 21% cited a desire to provide moral or religious instruction.
    • Source: NCES, pg 29.
  • Among black homeschoolers, racism in the schools was the second most common reason cited for why the family chose to homeschool. Mazama, pg 11.

 

Academic performance

  • Homeschool students rank 15-30 percentile points above their public school peers on national achievement tests. Ray, pg 27.
  • Homeschool students significantly outperform their public school peers academically regardless of gender, amount of money spent on education, whether the parent had ever been a certified teacher, number of children living at home, degree of structure in the homeschooling, amount of time spent on structured learning, or the age at which formal instruction began. None of these factors causes any significant variance in the student’s academic test scores. Ray, pg 27
  • The degree of state regulation on homeschooling causes no statistical difference in the academic performance of the students. Ray, pg 27

 

Social, Emotional, and Psychological Development and Performance as Adults

  • Homeschool students outperform their peers by a statistically significant margin on issues of social and emotional development, measured by peer interaction, self-concept, leadership skills, family cohesion, participation in community service, and self-esteem. NHERI. Ray, pg 10.
  • Homeschool students are more politically tolerant by a statistically significant margin.  Ray, pg 12.
  • Homeschool graduates are more likely to participate in community service, more likely to attend community meetings, and more likely to vote. NHERI.

 

Other Facts

  • Homeschool students are 40% less likely to die of abuse and neglect and are less likely to experience sexual abuse when compared to students in the general public. Ray.