QUINCY, IL. (WGEM) — Many kids spent time learning from home last year and that trend looks to continue into this upcoming school year.
Officials at the regional superintendents office in Quincy said local interest has grown on homeschooling.
In the past year and a half, assistant regional superintendent Julie Stratman said she’s seen more families reach out for information on how to homeschool their kids.
According to a report by the U.S. Census Bureau, the rate of households homeschooling rose to 11% by September 2020, more than doubling from 5.4% just six months earlier.
Stratman said the office doesn’t have an exact headcount of students that have switched to homeschooling because it’s families are not required to report it to their office, but they’ve seen more families reaching out for help.
“We have seen an increase in homeschooling applications, conversations, phone calls, emails within the past year and a half. Before, in the 19/20 school year we had about five and in the 20/21 school year we jumped from five to 20.”
Stratman said based on calls she’s had with families, she expects the number of families homeschooling in our area to continue to increase, but she’s not sure for how long.
The pandemic has played a factor in parents making this decision.
“We have had a lot of calls of ‘I’m scared for my kid to go back into the school setting with COVID-19’ and talking through that and through the website and helping them choose if that’s what they’re going to do.”
The office has heard from families that said their kids enjoyed virtual learning and are now interested in homeschooling because it’s a similar format to that.