Updated: Apr 21, 2022
Hybrid programs have been exploding across the nation for a few years now—even more so since the great school closures of 2020 that caused a large portion of the population to consider alternative education options. The word hybrid is defined as “a thing made by combining two different elements; a mixture,” and that is exactly what it is: an educational program that combines traditional school elements with homeschooling. Could it be the best of both worlds?
I hold strongly to the belief that parents are intended to be the primary educators in their children’s lives. We teach them to walk, talk, and play…we sing to them, read to them, and teach them to interact with others. Our culture has adopted a strange standard that says when your child turns 5, you are no longer capable of being their primary teacher and must turn over the reins to the “professionals.” (what?!) Continuing to play a primary role in their learning and growing is the most natural step for a parent and they can and should be empowered in their role—not stripped of it.
We are all equipped with different God-given strengths and gifts and instead of resigning our child’s education to the “professionals”/government when our child reaches a certain age, we can instead band together and support each other in the formal education of our children. Hybrid programs often provide the very framework to do this.
These programs can take many different forms and approaches, but the basic premise is usually 2-3 “in class” days and the other days are spent at home with a parent or other loved one who works with the child(ren) on the at-home portion of the program. Often, the hybrid teachers provide lesson plans for use on home days and some or all of the core subjects are taught both in class and at home.
Hybrid programs appeal to a wide array of families and children including:
Homeschool parents who may be looking for relief or support from the demands of homeschooling completely independently
Independently homeschooled students who are lonely and crave consistent and meaningful connection with peers and other caring adults
Parents who are unhappy with the public school system but cannot consider private school programs due to the expense, nor would they consider homeschooling independently
Parents who desire to homeschool but need to work part-time
Students who struggle to “fit-the-mold” in a traditional 5 day school program and need the flexibility and individualized approach a hybrid program can offer
As more and more families are searching for options, hybrid leaders are stepping up all over the country to meet the need. Are you one of them?! #yougotthis
Becky Abrams is the founder of Arrows Christian Homeschool Community and the Executive Director of Arrows Christian Academy, a two-day hybrid program in Southern Oregon serving students in PreK through grade 8. After working alongside homeschool leader, Carol Topp of the HomeschoolCPA, Becky is honored to serve the homeschool hybrid community as the face of HomeschoolLeaders.com offering training and consulting to homeschool leaders across the nation.