To homeschool or not to homeschool? That is the question some parents, including famous ones, have agonized over. And, according to studies, the top three reasons parents in the United States choose to homeschool include: school environment concerns, the desire to provide religious or moral direction, and dissatisfaction with the academic instruction at public and private schools.
Yet, even with these concerns, most parents opt for the traditional method of education. But, here are 11 celebrity moms who have chosen the unconventional route.
1. Nicole Kidman – When Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman were married they chose to homeschool their adopted children, son, Connor, and daughter, Isabella. The two were taught by Cruise’s sister.
2. Katie Holmes – When Tom Cruise was married to his third wife, Katie Holmes, they homeschooled their daughter, Suri. In an interview with the Huffington Post, Holmes said, “We like the one-on-one education. I’m really happy that my daughter is strong-willed and determined.”
3. Elizabeth Edwards – During John Edwards’ 2008 bid for election, ex-wife, Elizabeth, pulled her kids out of public schools so not to be separated from them for long periods of time. The late, Mrs. Edwards once said, “I think it’s been an incredible experience for them to have this wide range of ways in which they learn.”
4. Jada Pinkett-Smith – Jada and Will Smith homeschooled their two children, Willow and Jaden. Their reason was revealed in an Essence Magazine interview, where Jada stated, “The school system in this country—public and private—is designed for the industrial age. We’re in a technological age. We don’t want our kids to memorize. We want them to learn.”
5. Kate Gosselin – The reality mom began the homeschooling journey after two of her eight kids got expelled from school, and now she homeschools all of her children.
6. Mayim Bialik – The Big Bang Theory star favors an “unschooling” approach to education and told The Washington Post, “this is the way people have always raised children, except for the last 200 years.”
7. Kelly Preston – Kelly Preston and John Travolta homeschooled their first child, Jett, who passed away in 2009. The Travolta’s now homeschool their daughter, Ella Bleu.
8. Lisa Whelchel – Of Whelchel’s experience homeschooling her children, the Facts of Life star explained, “We were having so much fun, you couldn’t have paid me to send my kids to school.”
9. Erykah Badu – Both of her children were homeschooled, and Badu has supported her decision by saying that her son, Seven, “learned how to solve problems in a nontraditional way. In doing that he developed an edge in his schoolwork.”
10. Angelina Jolie – According to reports, Maddox Jolie-Pitt is the only one of Angie and Brad Pitt’s six children who’s been homeschooled. In an interview with The Independent, Jolie stated, “I do think we live in a different age and the education system hasn’t caught up with our children and our way of life.”
11. Michelle Duggar – The mom of 19, along with husband, Jim Bob, revealed that their goal with homeschooling has been to provide a Christian-based curriculum with an emphasis on character building traits like responsibility, honesty, and self-control.
It may come as a surprise to many, but throughout history, the majority of kids were homeschooled and taught by family members, friends, or anyone with useful knowledge. Although the percentage of children who are homeschooled accounts for less than 5%, it is very much on the rise. So, the true question is, is this a passing fad or forgone practice that is making a comeback? Perhaps, only time will tell.