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Why Choosing to Home-school is So Different for Black Parents

By: Krystle Crossman

Home-schooling is on the rise in the US and one minority is helping the number to grow quickly. There are currently 220,000 black children who are home-schooled and that number is climbing every day. One of the main reasons that parents are keeping their kids out of the public school system is because of racism from other students and teachers. They also do not want their children to get caught up in stereotyping because it can lead to poor academic results.

As much as we would like to say that racism and stereotypes are a thing of the past that statement would be completely false. Black students suffer more than any other race. When young children are in public schools they are often made to feel like they are never going to be successful because of the stereotypes that people like to tell them about such as the stereotype that black children don’t work as hard and do poorly in school. Unfortunately when they are told things like this they start to believe it and end up giving up on trying because they feel like they aren’t going to do well anyway. This is a sad truth in public schools and one of the reasons that black families are teaching at home more often.

Depending on the area that they live in some students may be the only black students in their class. This puts the focus on them entirely and can make for a very uncomfortable education. Boys have the most trouble as they are the ones who are critiqued and harassed the most. This of course is not true for all schools, but the majority of public schools have some kind of racism floating down the hallways. White students do not have to deal with this and they are home-school for reasons such as they are being bullied by other students, their parents feel that the school system is not adequate, or for religious reasons.

Temple University faculty member Ama Mazama says that when people hear that a black student is being home-schooled they think it is for the same reasons that white people home-school their children but that is far from the truth. She says that the schools should look at the reasons why black children are being pulled from their schools. When a black child is suffering from racial injustice there usually is not much done. The injustice continues and the student becomes more and more withdrawn. The school is basically taking away their right to a good education. This is why so many black parents feel that teaching their children at home is a much better option.

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