Pros and cons of homeschooling

HARRISON COUNTY, W.Va (WDTV) - When it comes to educating your children, there are a few options: public or private school, or homeschooling -- just to name a few.

For those who homeschool kids, they feel it meets their kids' specific needs, while others think public or private school is a better option.

For one man in Harrison County, he's no stranger to raising seven kids. In fact, he didn't just raise them, but he was one of the primary sources for their education.

"Homeschooling for us is just really beneficial as far as having our kids at home, being with them, spending a lot of time with them, knowing what they're learning," said Kevin Zakariasen.

He and his wife tried multiple options for schooling, but they found that homeschooling was the best and most desirable for their specific needs.

"We're actually able to customize the curriculum for our kids," he said.

Another man from Harrison County has 15 children, and he and his wife considered the homeschooling option. However, they ultimately voted against it.

"Personally for us, we just don't have the patience," said Shell Hoskinson. "It's hard enough to sometimes to get our kids to do their homework and I can't imagine trying to do that for six or seven hours a day."

Some have said that homeschooling plays a role in the lack of a social life.

"We thought, a lot of times you hear socially your kids are not going to be around other kids, your kids are not going to have the social skills," Zakariasen said. "That has not been the case for us. Our kids are here in the coffee shop. They meet hundreds of kids a day."

In Marion County, Superintendent Gary Price said there are hundreds of kids who are homeschooled and can understand why some parents choose that route.

"For many of those people, they do a good job working with their children," Price said.

In the end, Price feels the public schools offer a solid education.

"Working with a small group, whether it's one on one or you have a couple of kids working with just two or three children, that's a pretty intense relationship," Price said. "I would definitely advise parents to really think twice before they decide to take on that challenge."

Zakariasen is also the owner of Stonewall Coffee in Clarksburg, and his children have helped out there, which has given them a different aspect of a social life.