Homeschooling is the umbrella term for the alternative practice of formally educating children and youth at home. It is an alternative because of two prevalent conditions: the whole process of education in Homeschooling does not happen solely within the confines of the school physical plant, and this practice is for individuals who cannot avail of the prescribed instruction in a traditional school because of prevailing circumstances.
Homeschooling Program provides an alternative delivery system of honing the critical years of every child who cannot avail of the formal instruction in a traditional school. Every individual is unique. Thus, Homeschooling addresses students’ differences. It recognizes various learning styles and particular needs of a child. As the government’s lead agency in primary education, the Education Department acknowledges these realities. A way to articulate and concretize its recognition of the realities is the legalization and implementation of Homeschooling, aside from the traditional schooling program.
Homeschooling is formal because it is a part of the Philippine standard educational system. As part of the country’s educational system, it adheres to the K to 12 Philippine Basic Education Curriculum and its minimum learning competencies. Every lesson conforms with the Philippine Elementary Learning Competencies (PELC), the Philippine Secondary School Learning Competencies (PSSLC), and the Essential Learning Competencies (ELC) of the New Normal Era. The program strictly observes this written curriculum framework so that the learner can flexibly move with a lesser effort from the school-based setting to a home-based environment or vice-versa in acquiring government-recognized education.
This approach principally acknowledges the inherent ideal qualities of the home and uses this to optimum advantage so that it can be the venue for most of the educative process. It is an approach where the parents assume primary responsibility in supervising their children’s education. This practice is an open, individualized, self-paced, and flexible delivery system where learners can progress at their own pace through adaptable arrangements. Learning opportunities and movement within the curriculum are individualized and correspond to the learner’s needs, interests, and abilities.
By convention, there are two practices of Homeschooling: the Home Education Program (HEP) and the Home Study Program (HSP). Under HEP, the parent is the primary facilitator of the whole educative process, and the family’s home is its primary venue. This program recognizes some parents’ assumptions that they have the most significant concern, love, and dedication for their children. Therefore, they can easily detect their needs, promote their interests, and have sufficient time to develop their fullest potential. This program further responds to some parents’ claim for a direct hand in raising, rearing, caring for, and training, or in short, “educating” their children, especially in their formative years. The educative process accomplishes learning interaction with greater ease because of the one-on-one-teacher-student ratio.
In HSP, the legitimate school teacher is the primary facilitator of the whole educative process, be it inside the school’s campus or in the comfort of the child’s home. The school teacher is the facilitator in planning the learning process and whenever the learner gets into the classroom. Once the student is at home, any of the parents present there takes over in facilitating teaching-learning transactions or act as overseer of the independent learner’s execution of tasks provided by the school. This practice directly involves the parent in delivering instruction and assessment of learning. However, a professional teacher employed in a legitimate school may assist or aid in the process, depending on the alternative delivery modality reckoned with and applied. All in all, the parent still observes the school’s instructional plan and seeks the guidance of the school teacher. Being the subject matter and instructional expert, the school teacher works with the parents in the child’s development and diagnoses problem areas, suggests alternative plans of action, provides resource materials, and encourages as needed.
The Alternative Delivery Modalities (ADM) that Homeschooling may adopt includes any combination of the Education Department’s existing programs and practices and other innovative and dynamic educational practices. Among these practices are modules, self-instructional materials (SIM), and learning activity packages (LAPs). Examples of programs are Alternative Learning System (ALS), Enhanced Instructional Management by Parents, Community, and Teachers (e-IMPACT), Modified In-School Off-School Approach (MISOSA), Drop-Out Reduction Program (DORP), Open High School Program (OHSP), Effective Alternative Secondary Education (EASE), Internet-based Distance Education Program (iDEP), eSkwela of the Commission on Information and Communications Technology (CICT) and the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP), computer-assisted instruction (CAI), e-modules, e-learning, blended learning, and other home study or home education programs.