High Plains seeing the effects of homeschooling on the rise nationwide

Local News

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – The number of withdrawals from public schools has risen 228% from 1997 to 2019.

“I’m terrified to be teaching my child and the same time excited about it,” said Kristina Hanson, a local home school parent

A recent survey from Gallup shows that the number of homeschool families in the United States doubled from 5% in 2019 to 10% in 2020.

Hanson said they made the move to homeschooling during the first semester of 2021. She said the decision was due to COVID-19.

“Last year, when spring break hit and everybody was forced into remote learning, my daughter did ok considering. But over the course of the past year, her overall grades have dropped,” said Hanson.

Crystal Dilley, communications director with the Panhandle Christian Home Educators Association said they’ve had several families reach out to the association after virtual learning started.

“They reached out to us and we explained how homeschooling works in the state of Texas. Every state is different. We explained to them how it works in the state of Texas and we encouraged them and helped them get started,” said Dilley.

Dilley said if you are thinking of moving your child to homeschooling, in the state of Texas, their is no set time when you can pull your child out of public school, but she said you need to have a plan

“You can’t just wiley-niley, ‘I’m going to home school.’ you need to have a plan. You need to have a curriculum ready, like that kind of thing,” said Dilley.

Dilley said when it comes to picking a curriculum for your child, it is all about how they learn, and often times, it is all trial and error.

“The vast choice of curriculum seems extremely overwhelming. Even now, I’ve been homeschooling for, I don’t know, I think this is year ten for me at this point and even now, I will start a curriculum and it never fails and I’ll say ‘this isn’t working,”” added Dilley

Nicole Huddleston, leader of TOPS Homeschool Community said they have not seen as big of an increase of homeschoolers in the rural areas.

Both Huddleston and Dilley said oftentimes, first-time parents of homeschoolers can run into self-doubt, but having a strong support system and the community around you is key to making sure you know you are doing what is right for your kids.

Huddleston said when you are first starting out, learn how your kids learn and have fun with learning and with the process.

Local and statewide homeschool resources, contact information in the link provided.

  • Panhandle Christian Home Educators Association
  • TOPS Homeschool Community
  • Texas Home School Coalition

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