HOME-SCHOOLING: Boon or Bane?

Introduction

Homeschooling or Home Schooling is a form of education in which parents teach their children at home instead of enrolling them to private or public schools. It is also known as home education or effective home education (EHE). Here Parents are the one to decide the curriculum, subject matter, syllabus, set and mark examinations and determine progress of their children. Home education is education of a child that takes place at home either by his parent or guardian or a private tutor. It is the education of children at home or a variety of places other than school.

Home-Schooling became famous as parents started to get worried about the quality of education being given to their child amidst more and more violence, confusion and conflicts in the world. Home-Schooling is one of the most diverse and flexible educational option available today. The variety of home-schooling styles reflects the diversity of the people who choose this method. The quality of education also depends on the competence of a parent who in this case assumes the full responsibility of a trained tutor or teacher. Parents can monitor the development of their children closely and easily.

Parents whose jobs involve traveling throughout the year prefer this education option to balance family time and work. This form of education is excellent for children which special needs and talented children who need to develop their talents and study at the same time. 

Aspect of Home-Schooling in India

In India there is very less or absolutely zero knowledge considering the factor of home-schooling. Te legality of home-schooling spreads over different states has been debated by educators, lawmakers, and parents since the passing of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act (RTE), which makes formal education a fundamental right of every child between ages of 6 to 14 and specifies minimum norms for schools. There have been petitions signed by parents and alternate schools in the past for granting relief as the legality of home schooling still remains a grey area. As per the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to which India is a signatory, quote: “Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.” But, the Indian Government has failed to explain any fact considering homeschooling.

Though there is no actual data available, the most prevalent methods in India are Montessori method, Unschooling, Radical Unschooling, Waldorf education and traditional School-at-home. Some of these approaches like Montessori and Waldorf are also available in school settings.

Most parents who homeschool opt for the National Institute of Open Schooling, an autonomous institute under the HRD ministry. Another option is to book the exams and register the children, your children will sit in the exams in an exam center in controlled conditions, the same as the rest of school population. In recent years, quiet a few homeschool children in India have made splash by being accepted into stellar institutions such as IIT and MIT. A non profit initiative of home schooling children, parents, guardians and friends have been established under the name “Swashikshan – Indian Association of Homeschoolers.” It is not bounded by four walls or driven by hierarchies and is a flat organization which is created in small teams to handle specific activities related to homeschooling. While India does not have a regulatory body for home schoolers, homeschooling is practiced across the nation by many people.

Advantages of Homeschooling 

  • Academic Flexibility- Parents get to make a flexible schedule for their children. They can choose and decide academic curriculum, syllabus, subjects and method of teaching according to their own choice & method.
  • Warm family environment- Parents and children tend to form a strong bond through homeschooling. Children inculcate the importance of relationships, family, emotions & sense of respect towards other members of the family.
  • Practical base and learning- Here parents can opt for more practical based learning rather than only theoretical studies. Children can be taught different aspects using the method of studies through field visits, practical sessions, observing and researching.
  • Effective learning- Parents can adapt teaching methods suiting their children. As parents know the strong and weak points of their children they can schedule the method of learning accordingly.
  • Convenient- Homeschooling is set to be convenient for both parents and children specially in cases where parents have to move around the world for the purpose of their jobs. Other than that parents get to choose the methods and techniques of teaching their children and making them better understand their lessons.
  • Health and Safety- Parents opt for homeschooling to protect their children from various hazards. Whether it be matter of health or safety which of utter importance. Parents choose this methods either due to any health condition of their child or due to certain safety reasons like drug addiction, adulteration, ragging, mental stress and anxiety, abuse, etc.
  • Shelters from misconduct- Parents opt this method to prevent their children from misbehaving and misconducting. Misbehaviors like adulteration, speaking foul language, liquor addiction, pr misbehaving with parents or elders can lead to a unhealthy growing environment.
  • Cost Effective- The method of home-schooling seems to be cost effective as one does not have to worry about school fees. In todays era where paying school fees have become so expensive and which make parents think twice about educating their children, home-schooling is an amazing option. Parents can provide books and study materials according to their convenience. 

Disadvantages of Home-Schooling

  • Irritation- As children stay at home along with their parents for the whole time, it can create a sense of irritation among parents and can disturb the parent-children relationship. 
  • Socially inactive-  Children miss socialization and interactions with other children. This interaction is crucial to a child’s development especially in developing social skills. 
  • Slower Pace- Children who opt for home-schooling are a bit slow and lag behind in certain topics and subjects as compared to students who attends schools. Parents cannot complete each and every subject on their own timely and speedily, therefore sometimes it could take sometime for the children to learn.
  • Constant Motivation- Children who are home-schooled can sometimes require constant motivations and may be needed to be pushed to study and learn as like the school going children. This could even make parents getting more irritated.
  • Constantly adapt to be effective teachers- Parents first would require to study, understand and learn all the topics of different subjects and then teach their children. Parents may require to forego other activities and job opportunities to pay proper attention to their children. 
  • Less Competitive- Children who are home-schooled tend to not  survive in an competitive atmosphere. And they even lag behind in competing when they are exposed to the outer world. 
  • Dependent- Children who are home-schooled become dependent on their parents for each and everything. They tend to constantly require their parents for even small things. Home-schoolings makes children dependent on their parents.
  • Social Anxiety- Children who are home-schooled cannot cope up with peer pressure, and can get social anxiety. They may hinder from getting social active and interacting with various groups of people.

Conclusion

To conclude homeschooling can have its own positive and negative points where homeschooling can be said to be better for the development of children’s ability in future. It may have benefits like parents can design their own curriculum and it can be good for students interest where they can get more knowledge and information from their study environment. And children can master and distribute their own time to study, homeschooling students are more free and flexible. And as not in favor of homeschooling, it limits the child’s whole personal development and slower learning progress. 

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

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The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

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