In our previous blog we highlighted the advantages of home schooling and we explored some of the positive aspects associated with learning at home. However, there have also been some disadvantages which we will discuss in this blog.
One of the major disadvantages when it comes to remote education is the lack of motivation. Without the regular routine of scheduled classes and the familiarity of the classroom setting, some students can feel unmotivated and become easily distracted.
In a recent study over half of parents of school-aged children said that at least one child in their home was struggling with home education. There is also the lack of internet access and the unavailability of technology in some homes which makes it difficult to participate in online learning. This can be a major stumbling block which has mainly affected home schoolers from underprivileged, working class or single parent households. While the government has tried to supply students with laptops suitable for elearning, if a home does not have reliable internet access the problem still exists. This issue has highlighted the economic inequality and digital divide that exists between many students.
Older students have also voiced their concerns. According to a survey of 16 – 18 year old students, 64% believed that continuing their education at home would negatively affect their future plans and career prospects.
Of all the disadvantages associated with home schooling, the most worrying is the effect it has on the mental health of students. This is not directly related to the activity of remote learning, but rather it is due to the social isolation many experience because they are unable to see and associate with their peers. School sports teams, youth clubs and any type of extracurricular activity have also ceased due to the coronavirus pandemic. It is therefore important that parents and guardians try to encourage some form of physical activity or exercise as part of a student’s daily routine while they are home schooled. This will help improve their mental health until regular schooling can resume again.