When I came across this article in the Wall Street Journal, I was immediately interested for 3 reasons. First, my little sister just returned from teaching in China. Second, because with their style of government, I would have guessed that homeschool would be against the law there. The final reason it caught my eye was simply because I gravitate to anything that provides information on the growth of homeschool. I believe there are some great insights to be gained if we can learn why people homeschool and what homeschool ideas will help them be successful.
Reasons for Homeschool in China
The article stated several reasons that parents homeschool in China. Many of them should sound very familiar to why parents in the United States homeschool. First, many of the parents dislike the rigorous structure of the public schools in their country. Second, some parents feel like the public schools do not challenge their students sufficiently. Finally, parents are losing confidence in the public school’s ability to protect their children from abuse.
This sounds so familiar. Perhaps the thing that jumps out at me the very most is the fact that some parents think public school in China is too rigorous while others think it is not challenging their children enough. What does this say? Well, it could say a lot of things, but to me, I see a typical inability to customize an educational plan for a child when there are 30 to 40 children in a classroom.
I think it is also telling that the violence against children in schools is not just an American problem. Whether violence has always been a part of the school system (I know that it was a minor part of my experience) and we are simply seeing it in a different light, or it is actually on the climb, more and more parents around the globe are taking their children out of school and stating their child’s safety as a major factor.
How many homeschooled children are there in China?
This may be impossible to accurately answer. The WSJ did state that there are 100,000 children that participate in some form of alternative schooling. That could include homeschool, but also incorporates private schooling and boarding schools as well. It is a small start, but the numbers in the United States were similar to that less than twenty years ago.
What are the greatest needs for Chinese homeschool families?
The most significant needs right now are simply resources and opportunities to learn teaching skills. I believe that parents will find a way to get the resources. The Internet will be a great help the parents of China as they search for ideas. I hope that some will find our 101 Homeschool Ideas Community.