The recently-released findings from an in-depth study of nearly 10,000 young adults show that Millennials who were homeschooled are less likely to leave the faith than individuals who attended private or public schools.
Late last month, Generations with Vision and the National Home Education Research Institute published the results of their Gen2 Survey. The study explores the correlations between different educational methods and the spiritual decisions of Millennials who were raised in the church.
“The purpose of the study is to examine these adults who were churched growing up and to understand the key influences which either encouraged or deterred them from believing and practicing the faith of their parents,” said the survey’s director and lead researcher, Dr. Brian Ray.
Using a sample size of 9,369 18-to 38-year-olds who were churched while growing up, the Gen2 Survey collected data on Millennials’ educational backgrounds, worldviews, and religious beliefs. The study found that individuals who were homeschooled, attended church regularly, and had good relationships with their parents were most likely to remain involved in the Christian faith.
“Having a strong relationship with the child’s mother and father, attending church as a child, and years homeschooled were all clearly positively associated with Millennials’ basic Christian orthodoxy, broader biblical beliefs, Christian behaviors (e.g., attending church, keeping sex in marriage, prayer, not using pornography), satisfaction in life, civic and community involvement, and having beliefs similar to one’s parents,” Ray stated.
87% of study participants who were homeschooled said they have strong Christian beliefs. Conversely, Millennials who were enrolled in public schools or private Christian schools were more likely to walk away from the faith later in life.
“Number of years in Christian school and number of years in public school were negatively associated with most of the adult beliefs and behaviors just mentioned,” Ray explained.
Statistically, homeschooled young adults were six times as likely to be believers and seven times as likely to be stronger in their Christian beliefs as Millennials attending private schools. Homeschooled Millennials were also two times as likely to be stronger in Christian beliefs as those who attended Christian schools or public schools.
Educational experiences also influence lifestyle choices and beliefs, according to the Gen2 Survey. For example, approximately one-third of young adults who were raised in Christian homes and educated in public schools have engaged in co-habitating fornication, compared to 9% of homeschooled individuals.
Support of homosexual “marriage” was also lowest among homeschooled young adults, with 16% saying they support it. Nearly half of Millennials raised in Christian homes and educated in public schools supported homosexual “marriage.”
Kevin Swanson, director of Generations with Vision, said the Gen2 Survey is “vitally important,” because “it comes just as the largest numbers on historical record are migrating away from the Christian faith.”
“Some other surveys indicate as many as 70-90% of millennials and mosaics are leaving the Christian church,” Swanson said. “This is a major spiritual collapse.”
One of the best ways to fend off the widespread secularism and apostasy of our culture is through homeschooling, Swanson contended.
“Initial results give us this bottom line for the Gen2 Survey: Home education is the best educational choice, if we value the carrying on of the faith,” he said.
Overall, Swanson said the study’s findings reaffirm the importance of different influences in a child’s life.
“If your children are discipled in a Muslim mosque or by NBC, ABC, CBS, or Facebook for 35 hours a week, they can generally be expected to take on the faith that disciples them,” he asserted. “If they are discipled by parents or pastors for 35 hours a week, they will generally walk in the ways in which they are discipled. It really is that simple.”