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Faculty member lends homeschooling expertise to PBS News Hour

  |   Kristen B. Morales   |   Permalink   |   Media Mention

An increasing number of African-American families are choosing to homeschool their kids, and in a recent PBS News Hour segment, a University of Georgia College of Education professor adds her expertise on the subject.

More than 200,000 families across the country now choose to educate their children at home, nearly double the number from 2003. While white children still remain the majority of children homeschooled, the number of black children is on the rise, says Cheryl Fields-Smith, associate professor in the department of educational theory and practice.

Perceptions of, or experiences with, racism in public and private schools is one factor driving parents to make this decision. Others cite teacher expectations, overall school climate or the ability to create their own curriculum—with a focus on African history and heritage—as reasons to homeschool.

African-American parents can face more resistance from schools compared with white parents when advocating for their children, she added. "A lot of homeschoolers have had experiences in schools where the parents have tried to advocate for their children and they've experienced marginalization, and their child has experienced just not being able to be thenselves," said Fields-Smith. "They're painted as 'troublemakers.'"

© University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602