How Much Do You Spend on Homeschooling?

Have you ever added up what you spend to homeschool your children?

I used to, and still do. For the first few years (back in the 1980s), I spent around $500 a year to educate our two eldest children. I was buying books from A Beka back then, which isn’t cheap.

Once I had a few years of homeschooling under my belt, I became more interested in trying a variety of books and curriculum, so my annual expenditure actually went down a few hundred dollars or so. Most of what I did spend went to Rainbow Resource at each year’s homeschool convention; Christian Book Distributors, Miller Pads and Paper and Rod and Staff got a few dollars from us, too.

We spent only a few hundred dollars a year (even after having two more children) until the first year of high school for our eldest, when we signed her up for a correspondence school. We registered her brother for the same program the following year, and that was probably our most expensive year of homeschooling ever: $1000 total.

Before long, we jointly decided that the program involved too much memorization for tests, so we went back to doing our own thing. Since then, I doubt I’ve ever crossed the $300/year mark, no matter how many children I was homeschooling at one time.

I’m going to guess that you spend a similar amount. Am I right?

Whatever you spend, I’ll bet it’s not as much as the figures quoted for private and public education by writer Bill Walker from New Hampshire:

The Well School in Peterborough charges $7,360 for grades 1–4 and $8,800 for grades 5–8. Pine Hill Waldorf School in Wilton is $12,160 for grades 1–8. Monadnock Waldorf School costs $7800 for all grades. Here’s the fee schedule for St. Joseph Regional in Keene: “Tuition for grades K-8 for Catholics is $3,153, and $4,412 for non-Catholics. There is a 5 percent discount for one-time payment in full, and a discount for multiple children from a family.”

Now that’s private school tuition, and it far exceeds what our family has historically spent on homeschooling each year. But it’s nothing compared to what Walker says the public schools in New Hampshire spend: over $14,000 a year per student.

I have a feeling that far exceeds the most freespending homeschooling family in the country. But if you’re the exception, I’d love to hear where you’re spending all that cash!  :)