School students become less engaged with each year they attend school, according to research conducted in a 2013 Gallup Poll:
The Gallup Student Poll surveyed nearly 500,000 students in grades five through 12 from more than 1,700 public schools in 37 states in 2012. We found that nearly eight in 10 elementary students who participated in the poll are engaged with school. By middle school that falls to about six in 10 students. And by high school, only four in 10 students qualify as engaged. (Read more at the Gallup blog post about student engagement).
Gallup concludes that an over-reliance on standardized testing, the neutralization of students’ entrepreneurial tendencies, little “experiential” and “project-based” learning, and the “lack of pathways” for non-college-bound students are among the reasons for the steady drop in engagement of students over the years.
The good news is that homeschoolers definitely can and do approach education otherwise. In fact, homeschoolers regularly indulge their kids’ entrepreneurial ideas, use all kinds of hands-on and project-based learning, and frequently prepare their kids for non-college vocations as well as for university. Homeschoolers in most states can also choose to avoid altogether or completely de-emphasize standardized testing. Continue reading