By Yolanda Spivey
If home-schooling had a face, it would look like a White Christian family living in the rural South—and that’s how many people see those who usually home-school their children. But now, studies are showing that more Black parents are reportedly choosing to take their children out of traditional public schools.
There are many factors why. The obvious is the environment that is often presented at public schools. There is an increase in violence, public schools curriculum’s place more emphasis on test results than lesson plans, and further, Black parents are altogether disillusioned by public schools. They are also opposed to public school educators who quickly prescribe drugs like Ritalin or Adderall for children they deem to have behavioral problems.
Joyce Burges, co-founder of National Black Home Educators recently told BBC.com, “The failings of public schools have caused all of us, whether we are white or black, to come up with creative ideas about how we can educate children. That explains the rise of the co-ops and African Americans seeing that this is not just a white thing anymore.”
Burges, who home-schooled all five of her children also stated that the practice of home-schooling in the Black community has grown and is still growing “exponentially.”
Washington, D.C. resident Monica Utsey states that “home schooling is a way for some Black parents to instill certain values, provide a more nurturing environment, and teach more in-depth lesson on Black history.”
Utsey runs a home schooling co-operative for African American children in her community. She told the BBC.com that she didn’t want her children “to believe that their history begins with slavery.” She also added that public classrooms are designed to better fit girls and not boys, therefore African American boys “have a lot of trouble in the school system.”
The number of Black families who are choosing to home-school their children will continue to grow in the future as they see the true value in doing so.