In this my final installment of homeschooling around the world, I will address the state of homeschooling in the Middle East. I was tempted to skip this installment since there is little data on homeschooling, or even education in the area. I thought better of it because with education being non existent, poor, or unstable, I could not think of a better solution for Middle Eastern families than homeschooling.
As I recently wrote, many Middle Eastern families in America have turned to homeschooling. Meanwhile education in many Middle Eastern countries is weak due to safety reasons and sexual discrimination. While there is virtually no information on homeschooling in Middle Eastern countries, I would gather that for many children it is the only education they are receiving.
Saudi Arabia: I have found evidence of homeschooling in Saudi Arabia on Calvert Homeschooling Message boards. Many of the homeschoolers on the boards are American expatriates, but it seems there are native families who homeschool also. One homeschooling mom in Saudi Arabia wrote, “We can pretty much do what we want as there are no strict rules or laws we have to obey as foreigners”. I have also seen evidence of foreign family’s homeschooling in Syria and Qatar.
Israel. Families may homeschool in Israel provided they receive permission for the Ministry of education. Still, there are families that homeschool with asking for permission. It is assumed that there are several hundred homeschooling families. Homeschooling families in Israel can get support from the Israel Home Education Association. There are also several online support groups and resources.
It is also my assumption that homeschooling is ok in Iran since a German family fled there to continue educating their children at home. The threat against homeschooling in Germany was worse than the religious persecution in Iran.
As far as Iraq is concerned, since the state of education is very unstable many children do not get quality educations and with few girls going to school at all. Anyone wishing to homeschool their children would certainly be free to do so provided they can get their hands on books and other resources.