What Good Does Non-Public Education Do For Children?

At last count, about 4% of American children of school age (5-18) are homeschooled.  Add to that the 10% who are educated at private schools of some type.  That means that nearly 7.7 million school age children are educated outside of the government school system.  Ultimately, those numbers don’t reveal much, until you start looking at the achievement gaps.

Let’s look at homeschooled children first.

On average, children who receive their education at home school between 15 and 30 points higher in percentile rankings on achievement tests.  The national average is in the 50th percentile.  So, if a child ranks in the 70th percentile, that means her scores are in the top 30% of children her age.

Now, before we start wondering what kind of situation these children are in, let’s take some things into account.

The education level of parents DOES NOT negatively affect these score.  Neither does household income, nor the amount of state regulation. (http://www.nheri.org/research/research-facts-on-homeschooling.html)

Private school students see similar rankings on achievement scores, ranging from 15 to 25 points higher.  Religious school students average about 100 points higher on SATs.

It has been proven over and over that a non-public education is much more beneficial for students than a public education.  The scores prove it.

On top of that, students in private school environments are much more likely to feel safe than their public school counterparts.  In every category examined by the National Center for Education Statistics in a study released in March, private school students reported problems at least half the rate than in public schools. (http://www.statisticbrain.com/private-school-statistics/)

Smaller class sizes, more interaction with teachers, and more one-on-one instruction helps children in every aspect of the school experience.

Children also are much more involved with community service with a homeschool or private school background.  So much so that the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) provides information specific to activities in which children can take part.

The bottom line is this: children who have an educational experience outside a public school system are much better prepared for college and the real world.  Isn’t that what we all want for our children?

Why Christian Education In The First Place?

Influences.

We really don’t talk about them very much.  We know they are there, but we rarely realize just how they shape our lives.

But shouldn’t we?  Isn’t it important that we know what aspects of our daily lives shape us the most?  And shouldn’t it be even more important for us to know what is shaping the lives of our children and grandchildren?  After all, don’t we want to know what ideas are swirling about their heads?

These days, kids have access to a wide range of information.  In fact, the sources they have are exponentially greater than even twenty years ago.  With the rapid expansion of the Internet and web-based media, along with inexpensive devices with which to access those sources, our kids can find information on anything they can think of.

That’s why it is important for them to know what is good information, and what isn’t.

There are three primary influences on school-age children: parents, media, and schools (including peer groups).

Every study shows that kids, even into high school, say parents are still a major influence.  So whether you are involved or not, you are influencing your children.  You can control what kind of influence they’re getting from you.

Media – TV, music, movies, Internet – is more a major part of children’s lives than they were when we were their age.  Most of us grew up with three TV channels and a handful of radio stations.  Now, there are literally hundreds of TV and web-based media outlets.  They  also have access to a much wider range of music styles.  And the Internet?  Well, if you can dream it up, it’s out there.

But you can control that as well.  You can determine what is watched and listened to in your home.  You can control the websites that can be accessed.

That leaves school.  And, increasingly, you have absolutely no control there.  In fact, in most cases, you have no input.  And some schools would rather you not even know what your child is being taught.

A recent school board vote in Fairfax, Virginia, raised the ire of many parents in that community.  When faced with the addition of health education units on homosexuality and transgenderism, in classes as early as 1st grade, over 90% of parents there wanted at least the opportunity for their children to opt-out of the classes when these units were taught.  Some teachers were insistent that the opt-out option not be offered.  The school board there voted 10-2 to include the units (which were not even mandated by the state) and to not offer opt-outs for parents who objected.

Yes, that is only one school system.  Yes, we don’t see that happening in small communities like ours.  And yes, we have a great many good teachers and administrators in our schools, and good school board members.

But local control is being taken away by the handful.  What will be taught in your local school may not change much tomorrow.  It may not even change when schools open again this August.  But it is coming.  And just like Fairfax, you won’t have a say.  And if it works out like it has in many other parts of the nation, you won’t even know about it.

You can take control of this aspect of your child’s development as well.

We are offering a different kind of education at 22:6 Academy (named after Proverbs 22:6).  We offer the best of both the homeschooling and private education worlds.

Your child will receive instruction in the core content classes, as well as Bible classes, logic and critical thinking skills, and apologetics, where they will learn why the Christian faith is true and how they can defend their faith in the real world.

We offer a private school setting at about half the cost, and our schedule is extremely flexible.  We offer additional opportunities with field trips, and learning experiences outside the classroom can be classified as electives.

Your children will spend more than half the time of their formative years (5-18) in school.  Shouldn’t it be in one that promotes your values rather than work against them?  Where you have control and full knowledge of what they are being taught?  And where the teachers and classmates share the same worldview?

Contact us today at (270) 667-2852, and let’s get together and talk about your children’s educational future.  You deserve to have peace of mind when it comes to what your children are learning.

Morgan McKinley is a trained educator with 11 years experience in public and home school education.  He may also be reached at the226academy@yahoo.com.