Why We Homeschooled through High School

Author: Lyndsay Lambert
Published in: 19.4 THSC Review Magazine
Published on: Nov. 1, 2015

Many homeschooling parents feel the pressure to send their teens to public schools. Some are concerned that they cannot teach their kids at that level of education. They want their children to be able to get into college and succeed. Some want their kids to be able to participate in sports, the prom, or a plethora of other activities that go on in the schools. They’re afraid their children will miss out or that they will be different.

We began teaching our children when our firstborn was in second grade. We taught all four of them all the way through high school and graduated them from our homeschool. I would like to share with you some of the reasons we chose to do so and some of the blessings that were the results of that decision.

What about socialization?

One of the reasons we began to homeschool was because of socialization. We were concerned about the effects of peer pressure on our children. We wanted to be involved in their choosing of friends instead of being subject to the “luck of the draw.”

Where is peer pressure the worst? We think it is in high school. There are more things to draw away a child, more temptations, and more freedom. When a young person has a driver license, a whole other world of options opens up before him or her.

Some say that by that time, young people should be able to stand up to the peer pressure; they should be able to “just say ‘no.'” Well, maybe. I have had times in my life as an adult that my behavior has been influenced by other adults. If that’s the case, how can I be sure a teenager is going to be strong enough to stand alone?

Curricula Choices

We were not willing to turn over the choice of what our children were going to be taught to others, especially others with whom we disagreed about what is important. We wanted to teach our children our worldview, what we believe is the correct way to view the world, from a Christian perspective.

Most public school text books are humanistic in philosophy, teaching that there is no God and that man is evolving, becoming better and better. (Check out www.textbookreviews.org.)

Some examples of those are:

  • Sex Education: We were not willing for our children to start humanistic sex education classes in elementary school, or those that taught teens that the only concern with promiscuous sex was protection from pregnancy and disease.
  • Creationism vs. Evolution: That God created the world is a basic tenent of our faith. The public schools were not going to support that belief but often try to tear it down.
  • History, Geography, and Political Science vs. Social Studies (can include sociology, economics, religious studies, psychology, anthropology, and civics): We were able to teach these subjects from a Christian philosophy. For example, homeschooling gave us the opportunity to teach that history is HIS story.

Safety Issues

  • Physical: It doesn’t make sense to me that the states require compulsory attendance in schools, yet they are not held liable for the safety of the children they are requiring to attend. I think we are all aware of the many shootings in recent history of young people in schools, regardless of metal detectors and security guards now visible on most campuses.
  • Emotional: According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, close to half of all children will experience school bullying at some point while they are at primary or secondary school. At least 10% of children are bullied regularly. (See www.bullyingstatistics.org.)
  • Spiritual: Prayer and the Ten Commandments were removed from public schools in the 1960s by the Supreme Court. Schools are now often hostile environments for anyone who professes to be a Christian.

We saw many positive outcomes from holding our ground and continuing to homeschool our children through the high school years, such as:

Continued Parental Influence

  • More time with student
  • Parents’ input and control over peer influences
  • Parental oversight in courtship or dating easier
  • Parental guidance on morality and ethics as student is challenged more in these areas
  • Parental guidance through one of the most trying periods of life
  • Parental guidance concerning respect for authority

Positive Relationships

  • Strong positive relationships with parents
  • More time with siblings and opportunity to know them better
  • Opportunity to learn teaching skills and share a passion for learning by helping younger siblings with their studies
  • Ability to choose friends going in the same direction, rather than having negative cultural influences


  • Flexibility for early career opportunities
  • Ability to work at own pace (could school through summers and potentially graduate early)
  • Ability to focus on subjects of interest in high school
  • Flexible schedule (If there are special things to do [trips, jobs, events, etc.], one can schedule school around them.)


  • Learn how to learn and to think for oneself
  • Freedom to be oneself without the pressure to conform
  • Gain confidence in interacting with people who are not peers

Years ago, a friend told me that she was thinking about putting her kindergartner into the nearby public school because that is where he wanted to go. In response, I asked her if she allowed this son to play in the street, to which she responded emphatically that she did not!  I then asked her why she thought that her son, at five years old, was wise enough to make the decision about where he went to school, which could possibly do him as much harm as playing in the street.

Later, I thought about applying that same logic to homeschooling through high school. I see teens often playing football in the street, but they stay safe because they watch for cars and get out of the way. Would it be safe to let teens make that decision about school? I believe that it would be like letting a blind and deaf teenager play in the street. Teens are not mature enough to process the information and deal with it wisely any more than a blind and deaf teen can receive danger signals in the street and process them safely.

Teens are more susceptible to outside influences. There are more freedoms and opportunities for making mistakes that can affect the rest of their lives, and yet they are still children without the life experience and wisdom to avoid the pitfalls.

In short, I would say that the reasons we homeschooled through high school, by and large, were the same as those for homeschooling in the earlier years, only magnified many times over!

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