Homeschooling in Arizona
One thing is for sure about the Covid-19 pandemic, it has parents scrambling over options for school come fall. Each school district is taking different measures about how to reopen this fall. Some districts are giving parents varying options, while others are rather limited. Many parents are now turning to the idea of school at home, in order to have more control over their children’s health and education.
In Arizona, parents have the option to teach their children in the home. According to the Arizona Revised Statutes 15-802 G 2:
“Homeschool means a nonpublic school conducted primarily by the parent, guardian, or other person who has custody of the child or nonpublic instruction provided in the child’s home.”
Homeschoolers are parents or guardians who assume full responsibility for educating their children at home and must provide instruction in at least the subjects of reading, grammar, mathematics, science, and social studies pursuant to ARS §15-802.
So, what are the pros for in-home schooling? There are a variety of reasons why parents begin to seek information regarding homeschooling in Arizona. Here are some of the advantages of choosing school at home:
- You can tailor the coursework and study to your child’s individual abilities, needs, learning styles, interest and hone in on future goals. For instance, if your child expresses interest in the medical field, you can tailor coursework to focus more on biology, chemistry, and science-related academics. You can also get a jumpstart on college education and materials as well.
- Flexibility is a huge bonus when it comes to school at home. You can choose the hours of instruction, the pace of the work and it ensures your child masters each concept. You can focus on an area they are struggling without rushing to the next subject.
- A one-on-one approach to learning has been proven effective. It relieves your child from the pressure and stress of keeping up with their peers. There are fewer distractions and more attention paid to the matter at hand.
- You can choose the worldview through which your child is educated, including philosophical and religious teachings that they might not be exposed to in a public school setting.
- Strong family bonds and relationships have the opportunity to grow and succeed.
Inevitably, the pros of homeschooling also bring up the question of the negative impacts it might have. Here are some of the cons people often wonder about and what many people who have chosen homeschooling tend to do:
- The lack of socialization. It is one of the potential negative impacts of homeschooling. However, many parents recognize this and have created homeschooling co-ops. These groups are designed to socialize their children outside of homeschooling hours. You can also choose your own “field trips” to get your child out in the public and actively interact with people of all ages.
- What about sports? Another potential issue with homeschooling is for the student-athlete. You might worry your child won’t have access to sports if they are homeschooled. The good news is that the Arizona Interscholastic Association and the Arizona revised statutes has your child covered. They allow for your child to participate in interscholastic activities in the public school area of which you reside.
- Another con to homeschooling is that one parent will likely not be able to work a full-time job and teach at the same time. Your family must be comfortable on a one-salary income.
Are There Homeschooling Resources for Parents in Arizona?
Yes! There are many ways to get started on your homeschooling journey. Arizona is no stranger to parents that choose to homeschool their kids. When you are ready to get started, here is what you can begin to do:
- Read books on homeschooling.
- Get familiar with the laws in Arizona regarding homeschooling.
- Find support groups for homeschooling in your area.
- Research and select your homeschool curriculum.
- Decide on a plan and get organized.
Final Thoughts on Homeschooling in Arizona
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to education and that is what makes choice so important. Perhaps this year you got just the push you need to make the jump into homeschooling or maybe you do not feel you have much of a choice. Whatever the reason might be, just know that there are many resources and guides to get through the next school year.