I'm Keeping My Son Home: African American Males and the Motivation to Homeschool

by Ama Mazama; Garvey Lundy

Apr 1, 2014

This essay explores African American parents' decision to embrace homeschooling for their sons. In interviews, homeschooling parents portray their decision for their sons' education as an ideal panacea to counter the many obstacles faced by African American males. Homeschooling, the parents say, provides a safe educational space, protect African American males from entanglement in the criminal justice system, and shields African American males from biased expectations of teachers, and society at large.

  • Over two million children are being homeschooled in the United States, as opposed to 300,000 in 1990.
  • Homeschooling, which grew by 74 percent between 1999 and 2007, appears to be the fastest-growing form of education in the United States today.
  • Homeschooling parents most often mentioned their concern with the quality of education provided in brick-and-mortar schools (25 percent).
  • Unique to the African American experience in homeschooling, the second most mentioned motivating factor for homeschooling was a concern with racism (24 percent)
  • Almost 10 percent of parents stated directly that they chose homeschooling as an explicit act to protect their sons.