Posted by ICON School on Feb 24, 2021 2:30:56 PM

teen boy typing a report or doing schoolwork on a laptop at home, online school or homeschooling concept

The surge in online and virtual school options has led to confusion between traditional homeschooling curriculums and online schools. However, it's crucial to recognize the significant disparities between these two educational approaches, including their structure, design, and administration. This article aims to clarify these differences, enabling you to make an informed decision about the benefits of online school for your family.

Teaching Differences

Homeschooling places the responsibility of teaching on parents, who must select and deliver the curriculum. This requires research, confidence in instructing various subjects, and seeking support in areas of uncertainty. Fortunately, homeschooling now offers an abundance of resources, including faith-based education options for those seeking a religious foundation.

In contrast, online schools provide certified teachers who deliver lectures, offer feedback, and engage in one-on-one interactions with students through the school's portal. These experienced instructors are well-versed in guiding students through the curriculum, easing the pressure on both parents and students.


Online school programs entail a formal agreement where students apply and gain admission, receiving an official schedule they must follow consistently throughout the academic year. This structured schedule allows students to complete standardized coursework, interact with peers and instructors, and establish a routine. If your child thrives on predictability, an online school program may be an ideal fit.

Homeschooling programs, on the other hand, offer more flexibility as schedules are not mandated. Families can tailor their schedules to meet their needs while ensuring educational objectives are met. However, this flexibility means less virtual interaction with instructors and classmates. If you prefer the freedom to create and manage your own schedule, homeschooling may be a suitable option.

Official Academic Records and Credits

Online school options maintain official academic records, ensuring students can provide them for college admission. Homeschooling programs also keep records, but they are maintained by parents and may not be part of an official database. Additional requirements and verification may be necessary for homeschool records to meet college admission standards. Additionally, homeschool graduation may require understanding the process of obtaining or producing a diploma for your student.


While not applicable to all homeschool curriculums, many of them are private and require upfront fees. Since these programs do not have to meet state curriculum requirements, costs can vary and be higher compared to online school options. State reimbursement or financial support is not available for homeschooling.

Online school options offer a choice between private and public curriculum options. Public online schools often have minimal or no out-of-pocket costs and may provide essential tools such as laptops and required software. If you have budget constraints, an online school may be a more financially viable option.

Choosing Online School

When deciding between homeschooling and online school, it's important to recognize that the only commonality is the location of learning—your home. Online schools provide certified curricula taught by qualified instructors, ensuring academic parity with peers. Additionally, online school streamlines the transition back to brick-and-mortar schools, thanks to official record-keeping, standardized curriculum, and structured schedules.

For more information about online schools and the admissions process, contact ICON school today to register your student in one of our programs!


ICON School

Written by ICON School

Please Leave a Comment: