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John Legend Skipped 2 Grades; Was Also Homeschooled and Graduated High School at 16

By Yolanda Spivey

John Legend joins the growing list of celebrities who were home schooled.  He recently told a reporter at the Washington Post, he was homeschooled until he was old enough to start first grade.  When his mother decided to put him in a private Christian school, he took a series of test before entering and was skipped to the second grade.

His parent’s homeschooled him again for the 4th, 5th and 6th grades, but after they divorced, he went to public school.  He was skipped to the 8th grade and by the time he finished high school, he was 16 years old.

While in high-school, he was two years younger than his fellow classmates.  He pretty much got along with everyone especially when it came to music.

John Legend stated that his biology teacher in high-school was ineffective and his favorite subject was math.  He graduated 2nd in his class, and although he was accepted into Harvard, he opted to go to the University of Pennsylvania because they put in “a lot of effort,” to recruit him and they “chipped in more money.”  He also wanted to be closer to home which was in Ohio.

Instead of music, John Legend went on to study English in college and concentrated his studies in African American literature and culture. Studying liberal arts and being involved in writing and communications helped his career greatly.

When asked what course he felt should be mandatory for students  to take, he stated a critical thinking class.  He said, “You can teach it in English, in science, in math, in philosophy. It is important for people to know what is a good argument and what is not and the best way to communicate an opinion. Good citizens have to know how to make the best arguments that can up hold to scrutiny. If you don’t understand that, you aren’t a smart person.”

Well John Legend is certainly a smart man, and his life is proof that home-schooled children go on to excel and become productive leaders in society.


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