Luffman, Jacqueline. (1997). A profile of home schooling in Canada. Education Quarterly Review, 4(4), 30-47. Also retrieved 7/17/13 from http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/81-003-x/81-003-x1997004-eng.pdf. (Uses others’ research and government statistics to provide overview of home schooling in Canada. Promotes “partnerships” between institutional schools and homeschool families. “Home schooling, home educating or home-based education — a child participates in his or her education ‘at home’ rather than attending a public, private or other type of school. Parents or guardians assume the responsibility of educating their child and may develop their own curriculum guidelines” (p. 31). Discusses pros and cons of homeschooling. “There is little information on the characteristics of home-schooling families in Canada. Using information from home-schooling curriculum providers, Gerrard (1993) suggested that the largest group of home schoolers are from conservative Christian families who desire a traditional, value-filled learning environment. Controversial evidence exists about the academic achievements of home schoolers. In Ray’s 1994 study on Canadian home schoolers, 38% took a standardized achievement test. The results indicated that home schoolers far exceeded the national average on standardized achievement tests. However, high test scores do not necessarily indicate that home schooling is more advantageous; these students might do well in any educational setting. Furthermore, Ray’s study relied on individuals willing to volunteer information about their [p. 41 ends] home-schooling experience and were likely better educated and of higher social class than non-volunteers (Ray, 1994, p. 56). Clearly, more research is required on the motives, methods and achievements of home schoolers and their families” (p. 41-42). Reports there were approximately 17,500 registered home school students in Canada in the 1995-1996 school year which is about 0.4% of total elementary and secondary school enrollment; this does not include the non-registered or those home schooling through private schools. Home schooling is active and growing in the western provinces, particularly Alberta and British Columbia, with a 10% increase between 1995-1996 and 1996-1997 in the registered home school population in Western Canada. “The regional difference in home-schooling levels may be partially due to the receptivity to home education and the availability of resources for home-schooling families in some of the western provinces. For example, some school boards will make arrangements with home-schooling parents concerning the use of school libraries or other resources for the student” [p. 43]. “There are only two jurisdictions that guarantee some funding to parents who home school (Alberta and Northwest Territories) and they require that educational plans be approved” [p. 34]. Over 60% of the students were at the elementary level in 1995-1996. “Home schooling is not for everyone. Few parents are able to invest vast amounts of time, effort and energy into teaching their children at home. Furthermore, discussion on parental choice and alternative educational options within provincial educational systems may moderate future demands for home schooling. As provincial governments consider various options for parental choice in the public school system, careful attention is expected to be paid to the concerns of home-educating parents. Involving homeschooling families with conventional schools is believed to strengthen both the performance of home-schooled children, and the academic and social environment of traditional schools (Mayberry et al. 1995). Recent examples of collaborative initiatives suggest that clear guidelines and school partnerships with home schoolers would help to identify and track the progress of many home schoolers” (p. 44).) (Keywords: homeschooling, research, home education, survey, overview, Canada, foreign, demographics, advantages and disadvantages, opinion)
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