As far as I can tell there’s no difference in the level of education for home schooling religious education and in parish religious education. Well, there might be one difference. The homeschoolers have to come in and test out at the end of the year. The parish schoolers just have to show up and participate. Typically, there is no ‘test’ to speak of, but a conscientious teacher will assess for learning.
A web review indicates that the Vatican and the CCC encourage Homeschooling. It has long standing that the parents are the primary teachers of the Catholic Faith. The parish is secondary.
So why does Religious Education exist? You ask. It is an adjunct to family teaching. Religious Ed also gives students something to ask their parents about should they have additional questions. Let’s say your student wants to apply something he/she learned from class time, the student needs to ask the parent to clarify. Or, if the student needs to demonstrate Social Justice activities, a student needs parental supervision. These are just two examples. I am certain there are more.
Another concern is perhaps the parents are not feeling confident in the Catholic religion but seek to get a better understanding for their child. Religious education can help the child achieve a better understanding of the Catholic faith – thus helping the family grow.
So, if religious education classes exist, why homeschool? Some families prefer to keep their lessons of religion within the family. It is their right as a Catholic and citizen of this free country to homeschool. God Bless America.
All students use the same books to learn, the same bibles, the same Masses, the same penance, the same First Communion, etc. There is no difference and each family can decide what works better for their own circumstances.
Keywords; religious education, homeschooling