Homeschooling Considerations After the Newtown Massacre

Below are some examples of parents' concerns and thoughts across the country after the horrendous Newtown deaths.  We will hope and pray for a more peaceful new year for all families.

San Diego – Interest in homeschooling surges Fox 5 San Diego

Behana is a Lecturer in child and family development at San Diego State University.  She said parents should think twice about homeschooling.  Behana said a classroom environment provides key skills for life.

“Your socialization with peers is one of the best ways you figure out how you relate to the world,” said Behana.

She said homeschooling can be effective as long as there is a social component.

It seems odd Nory Behana is a child and family development specialist, but considers the institutional lineup of desks and controlled silence key for life skills.  There's been many a conversation of what abilities are produced.

Fargo/Grand Forks – Connecticut Tragedy Feeds Homeschooling Debate Valley News Live

The horror in Connecticut from last Friday has prompted new interest from parents in homeschooling their kids. One Minnesota mom says her experience has taught her it's not for everyone.

Lana Olson has been homeschooling her daughters, who are in sixth and third grades, for more than a year.

She says the family had to change their whole lives to accommodate their wish to homeschool the girls.

Knoxville – More parents choose home-schooling after Conn. shooting WATE 6

[Campbell County Director of Schools] Poston says he hopes parents realize the work that it takes to educate their children at home.

"Parents will be hard-pressed to stay with the national standards," said Poston.

Both mothers feel the sacrifice to home-school will be worth it.

"There's always a chance something bad is going to happen, but I think that having her at home while she's young will give here a better base to go from, and then she can deal the different trials in life when she gets older," said Jennifer Figueira.

Lubbock – Homeschooling An Option For Fearful Parents Everything Lubbock

President of the Texas Home School Coalition, Tim Lambert says, he often sees parents taking their kids out of public school to protect them.

"We see safety is an issue," Lambert said.  "It is not uncommon for us to get a call and say you know my child is not safe in the school and I want to take them out for safety reasons."

But Lambert says while safety is an issue, other day to day problems are a bigger motivation for parents.

"They have decided to withdraw that child because of an already existing condition," Lambert said. "Not something that they are afraid might happen."

Oklahoma City – Homeschool in Wake of Shooting KOKH Fox 25

"I know so many of my friends are homeschooling their kids because of the shootings, because it's terrifying to know those can be your kids," said Chelsey Gravel.

Chelsey Gravel graduated from homeschool. After Friday's school shooting, she says she's even more grateful about her parents' choice.

Mesa – Some consider homeschooling after Connecticut shooting CBS 5 KHPO

"It's a knee jerk emotional response that people have right away because it's a horrific thing," said [homeschooler] Oliphan.

She thinks that most people will not follow through with the idea and said although it's a decision that's right for her family, there a lot of things that need to be considered.

For example, she said you need to evaluate your patience and think about the sacrifices that you will have to make in your own personal life.

Orlando – Parents consider homeschool in wake of school shooting Bay News 9

Even without the school violence headlines, more and more parents are making the decision to pull their kids out of public education. The number of students who are being homeschooled in Florida have gone up every year for the past 10 years.

More than 72,000 in Florida are homeschooled including over 3,500 in Orange county, but experts warn about making a knee-jerk decision due to an isolated incident.

"We don’t want parents to be making impulsive type of decisions, homeschooling takes a lot of commitment. It is work," said Oliva. “When we get this increased response, we make an extra effort to just lead parents through the process so they know what they’re getting into.”

Houston – Parents concerned about recent violence consider homeschooling options KPRC Local 2

On Wednesday, police arrested a 14-year-old student for bringing a loaded gun to Sterling High School on Martindale Road in Houston.  Investigators said he told them he was carrying the weapon to protect himself from gang members.

That same day administrators at La Porte High School sent a letter home to parents after a threat was made that someone was going to, "shoot up the school."

"I do see, definitely, an increase in interest for homeschooling," said [homeschooler] Kilgore.  "Maybe those families who were on the edge, this may be the final push for them."

I will leave readers with Connecticut homeschoolers' display of their sympathy and support for Newtown.

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