It’s that time of year again. Millions of public school students are heading back to the classroom. But an increasing number of students are getting their education somewhere else: home.

The pandemic forced many families into homeschooling — and a surprising number of them are sticking with it.

In the 2021 and 2022 school year, homeschool enrollment rose by 30 percent. That’s according to research from Stanford University and the Urban Institute.

In Pennsylvania, homeschooling rose by 53 percent. And in New York, it rose by 65 percent.

The most dramatic shift in homeschool enrollment was among Black families. According to a 2020 Census Household Survey, homeschooling among Black families in the fall of 2020 was five times higher than it was in the spring of 2020.

Three years since the beginning of the pandemic, why are more parents opting to homeschool their kids for good? And with the rise of micro-schools, co-ops, and other types of homeschool options, where does regulation come in?

Copyright 2023 WAMU 88.5. To see more, visit WAMU 88.5.