By Yolanda Spivey
The National Home Education Research Institute is reporting that more Black families are choosing to home-school their children. Nationally, Black children make up more than 10% of the estimated two million students who are home-schooled with that figure growing from 84,000 in 1999 to 220,000 in 2007.
In a recent editorial in Essence Magazine, a couple explains why they chose to home-school their four children.
Albert and Aretha Taggart decided to home-school their children because they felt they were the best people to do the job. When their oldest daughter was five years old, they sent her to a Christian private school. Aretha stated, “We really wanted her to get a good moral teaching and biblical understanding.”
But immediately after enrolling their daughter in the school, they noticed a drastic change in her behavior. They also noticed that their daughter was ill everyday during lunch time. When she approached her child’s teacher about her concerns, she was told that “everybody that puts their kid in a Christian school is not practicing the values at home.”
So Aretha quit her corporate job and did what she said was natural to her, and that was to teach her child at home.
Now with four children, the Taggart’s are home-schooling pros. Aretha begins school every day at 7am and they are finished by 2pm. After school, the children play sports at the local Air Force base and are very involved with their community—they are part of their church choir and also involved in Girls in Action and Boys in Action which is similar to the Boys and Girls Scouts.
Aretha states, “We’re not trying to isolate ourselves from the world by home-schooling our children, which is why we have them so involved. We want them to have a childhood experience that will help them develop their confidence to stand for who they are within themselves.”
The couple even states that home-schooling has brought them closer together.
Aretha further states, “I also think as Black parents we can no longer separate ourselves from our children’s education and the real and true change we need will only happen if we promote parent-directed education.”
Black families’ homes-school their children more than any other minority group here in the United States.