Homeschoolers Score Significantly Above National Average
Continuing to demonstrate excellent academic achievement, home-schooled students again scored significantly above the national average on standardized achievement tests administered during the spring of 1994. These latest group summary scores for grades kindergarten through twelve include the work of more than 16,000 children from all fifty states.
According to standardized test results provided by the Riverside Publishing Company and analyzed by researcher Dr. Brian Ray, the nationwide average for home-schooled students is at the 77th percentile on the Basic Battery of the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills. (A percentile ranking indicates what percentage of students across the general population have achieved above and below the designated student or group.) The nationwide grand mean in reading is at the 79th percentile, a ranking which means that home-schooled students perform better in reading than 79% of the sample population on whom the test was normed. The 73rd grand mean percentile ranking in language and mathematics indicates that the typical home-schooler does better than 73% of the norming population in those subjects. These statistics are derived from the most extensive sampling of home schooling achievement to date, dramatically illustrating the effectiveness of this educational choice.
Of particular significance in the current rollup of home school achievement test scores is the fact that 54.7% of these students (across all grades K-12) are achieving individual scores in the top quarter of the population. This figure is more than double the number of conventional school students who score in the top quarter.
Combined with the 24.9% of the home school population that is achieving individual scores in the third quartile, 79.6% of home-schooled children achieve individual scores above the national average (compared to 50% of conventional school population).
Between 700,000 and one million children are currently taught at home in the U.S., and the movement continues to expand. Although home schooling is not the choice for everyone, the people who decide to commit themselves to this form of education are producing credible results. At a time when "parental choice in education" is touted as a key to reforming the nation's schools, home education is affirming its value as a viable alternative.