Parent Perceptions of a College Physical Education Program for Homeschool Students


  • Steven W. Groccia Springfield College
  • Michelle E. Moosbrugger
  • Kevin M. Mirando



Although the number of homeschool students in the United States has increased to approximately 2 million K–12 students as of spring 2010, there has been limited research on homeschool families and physical education. In particular, investigations of parent perceptions of homeschool physical education programs are lacking. The purpose of this study was to examine the parent perceptions of a college physical education program for homeschool children. Participants included 11 female parents of a child or children enrolled in the homeschool physical education program for 6 weeks. Data were collected through focus group interviews with the 11 parents placed in one of three groups based on the age of their participant(s). In addition, observational field notes were taken before, during, and after each homeschool physical education session. Data were inductively analyzed for themes through constant comparison of raw data. Methodological and investigator triangulation and member checking were utilized and supported trustworthiness. Five main themes emerged from the data from the parent perceptions of physical education and benefits of participating in physical education. For physical education, homeschool parents described a developmentally appropriate curriculum. Further, the theme of negative physical education experiences describes poor physical activity experiences that have influenced parent perceptions of physical education. Homeschool parents recognized multiple benefits of physical education in relation to their children and to the family. At the student participation level, the theme of affective learning describes the social-emotional development experienced by the homeschool children through the physical education program. The theme of student exposure describes other participant benefits of a physical education program. Finally, the theme of impact on family describes the benefits associated with physical education taking place outside of the college physical education program. 

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Author Biography

Steven W. Groccia, Springfield College

Department of Physical Education and Health Education

Assistant Professor of Physical Education