International Review of Education

, Volume 63, Issue 3, pp 303–318 | Cite as

Different reasons for one significant choice: Factors influencing homeschooling choice in Israel

Original Paper

Abstract

Homeschooling is an alternative to conventional education in many countries all over the world, though legal regulations vary. This article examines why parents opt for homeschooling. The large body of research on the topic (especially from the United States) points to a variety of reasons for making the choice to homeschool. The most common reasons are of a pedagogical nature, but in many cases they are also family-related. What has not yet been investigated in depth is the relationship between the different reasons for choosing homeschooling and the way in which homeschooling is practised. There is also a lack of research on the relationship between the reasons for choosing homeschooling and the parents’ personalities, educational background and attitudes towards both homeschooling in particular and the education system in general. Using a mixed methods design in order to examine these relationships, the authors of this article questioned 62 homeschooling families in Israel. The findings indicate that some parents chose to homeschool for pedagogical reasons only and others for both pedagogical and family-related reasons. Furthermore, the latter group held more positive views of the effect of homeschooling on children – and the mothers in that group, on average, were more educated compared with those who cited pedagogical reasons alone. The reasons for choosing homeschooling were also found to be associated with the character of the homeschooling practice, with families whose reasons were pedagogical only devoting more hours, on average, specifically to studying.

Keywords

Homeschooling Mixed methods research Reasons for choosing homeschooling Characteristics of homeschooling 

Résumé

Différentes raisons pour un choix d’importance : facteurs qui influencent la décision sur l’instruction à domicile en Israël – L’enseignement à domicile est une alternative à l’éducation conventionnelle dans de nombreux pays de tous les continents, même si les réglementations juridiques diffèrent. Cet article examine les raisons pour lesquelles des parents optent pour l’instruction à domicile. Le vaste corpus de recherche sur le sujet (provenant notamment des États-Unis) signale plusieurs raisons en faveur de ce choix. Les plus courantes sont de nature pédagogique, mais dans de nombreux cas elles sont également d’ordre familial. Ce qui n’a pas encore été exploré jusqu’ici est la relation entre les différentes raisons de choisir cet enseignement et les manières de le pratiquer. La recherche présente une autre lacune concernant la relation entre d’une part ces raisons, d’autre part la personnalité et le niveau d’instruction des parents ainsi que leur opinion sur l’enseignement à domicile en particulier et le système éducatif en général. Appliquant un modèle de recherche à méthode mixte en vue d’examiner ces relations, les auteurs de l’article ont questionné 62 familles pratiquant l’instruction à domicile en Israël. Les résultats indiquent que certains parents ont pris cette décision uniquement pour des raisons pédagogiques, d’autres pour des raisons tant pédagogiques que familiales. Ce deuxième groupe a en outre des opinions plus positives sur les conséquences de l’instruction à domicile sur les enfants, et les mères concernées ont en moyenne une instruction supérieure à celles évoquant uniquement des raisons pédagogiques. Les raisons de choisir l’éducation à domicile seraient par ailleurs associées à la nature de cette pratique, chez les familles qui avancent des motifs uniquement pédagogiques et consacrent en moyenne davantage d’heures à l’apprentissage.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht and UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Human ResourcesWestern Galilee CollegeAkkoIsrael
  2. 2.Department of EducationWestern Galilee CollegeAkkoIsrael

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