Do Amish children go to school?

Most Amish children attend one-room Amish-run schools

amish children go schoolLike their “English” peers, non-Amish children are required by law to attend school.  However, Amish children are traditionally educated only until the eighth grade.

Amish feel an eighth-grade education is sufficient for an Amish lifestyle.  Amish are also wary of some of the subject matter typically taught in high schools.

Amish earned the right to remove their children from school after the eighth grade following the 1972 Supreme Court case Wisconsin v. Yoder.

In some communities, such as Holmes County, Ohio, and northern Indiana (Shipshewana, Middlebury, Topeka, Nappanee, and related areas), a significant percentage of Amish children attend public schools.

A small minority of Amish children are home-schooled, though it’s not common.

Read more on why Amish don’t go to high school.

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    1. Marlene

      Amish schools

      In the earlier 20th century, Lancaster County Amish attended public schools. My grandmother was one such teacher, with 50 students from 1st-8th grade. Her students, mostly Amish, held a 50th anniversary party for her, and we met many of these students. As matters of mandatory pledge of allegiance, and prayer in school became contentious, separate Amish schools were formed.

    2. Marlene thanks for sharing on this and other posts, have been enjoying your interesting comments. I bet your Grandma had quite a few to show up for that 50th.

    3. Michael Tomaszewicz

      Please explain

      Teaching kids to only the 8th grade leaves them (by the standards of most of the rest of the world) half educated.
      Where does it require this in your ‘handbook’?

      Check the Internet (shock, horror) and you will find that most of the rest of this planet (China, CIS, India, Europe, South East Asia, Australasia, South America and(even)the non-Amish USA) are all doing their utmost to ensure that the next generation is properly equiped for the 21st century.

      You are fully entitled to live in the 17th century (if that’s what you want).
      Not so sure that it’s a good thing to impose on your kids, though.

      1. Arrogant and presumptive comment. Glad you had a chance to vent though.


      2. Lattice

        Hey, Michael.

        I think you answered your own rhetorical question:

        “by the standards of most of the rest of the world”

        After all, nothing is more dangerous to the Amish than trying to keep up with the standards of the world.

        1. Lin and Lattice, thanks for your more thoughtful responses. I believe I was a bit grumpy last night 🙂

      3. Barb Zimmerman

        Michael Tomaszewicz

        Having lived around many Amish who left school at age 15, I can assure you that their education does not stop. They begin full-time on-the-job training in family businesses and manufacturing in this area of northern Indiana. Some girls will take accounting or typing classes to prepare for office employment or business jobs. Just like the public schools offer skills training, the Amish kids now take on skills training with real-world experience.

        And as to book learning, many Amish friends I have continue to read (if they enjoy it), with the book in one hand and a dictionary in the other. They are not afraid to learn or just enjoy a good book. Most know more than people around here who never open a book again after junior high.

    4. Lin

      Dear Michael,
      Thankfully, people are allowed to continue learning by reading, by example, by seeing, by doing, by “want-to”, by asking, by thinking, and by making mistakes, even after a formal education has stopped. “Learn something new everyday!” It may be more important to an Amish person to seek the wisdom of God and to have a pure mind, than to know all the theories the world has to offer.

    5. Christian Vernan


      Thanks so much