Decades ago everyone homeschooled for less because there were very few publications, curricula, or conferences for homeschoolers. Now there are more products and services.
No, not really; and trying could be dangerous. Here’s the way it works:
- You could try to run your homeschool as a for-profit business and file a Schedule C annually detailing your income and expenses. The IRS expects to see signs of profitability after a few years, or it begins to suspect that the business is just a tax-dodge. Since you would be your only tuition-paying customer, it should be soon apparent to the IRS that your business is not a “for-profit” at all. If you accept other children and receive tuition payments from them, you have essentially founded your own private school and could legitimately deduct business expenses. However, this requires you to obtain a business license and liability insurance among other expenses.
- You could try to get your homeschool accepted by the IRS as a tax-exempt organization, which is extremely difficult as the government guards against anyone using tax-exempt status for personal or family gain.
We have sufficient evidence of educational success in the homeschooling movement that we believe public schools are starting to pay attention. We invite them to look at the successful educational ideas within the homeschooling movement and implement their findings to improve the quality of education for all children. More information on statistics and research regarding homeschooling can be found here.
Focus on your positive reasons for homeschooling, and emphasize the individuality of your choice. Consider also that their criticism might stem from loving concern. Caring friends and family want the best for your children, just as you do.
Explaining the success of homeschooling may be very helpful. CHN has a publication, When Your Grandchildren Homeschool: A Guide for Interested Relatives, designed just for this purpose. Fortunately, with so many people now homeschooling, it’s getting easier for many to accept it.
 Patricia M. Lines, “Home Schooling,” ERIC Digest, no. 95, April 1995, EDO-EA-95-3.
Ray, Brian “Home Education across the United States,” p. 6.
 “Semifinalists in the 1998 Merit Scholarship Competition,” National Merit Scholarship Corp., Evanston, Ill., 1997, pp. 14-92.
The validity of standardized tests has been questioned by many educators and researchers. Because they are multiple-choice, they don’t measure the ability to think or create. Many critics call for replacing standardized testing with “performance assessments.” A performance assessment requires evaluating the student’s actual work which might include writing samples, teacher observation, science experiments, etc. Performance assessments are exactly what parents naturally use in evaluating the progress of their homeschooled children.