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johnandtinagilbert

s/o home schooling too popular...the future of hsing regulation?

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It seems like the bottom line is that many people are concerned that the irresponsibility of some will threaten the rights of many. I think that's why we need to stay politically aware and deal with the people who CAN take away our rights. I (as a virtual schooler) can't take away anyone's rights.

 

:iagree: with this. FWIW.....I don't think that virtual academies will impact homeschoolers b/c VAs are already regulated. (I know nothing about the reimbursement situations b/c I have never lived in a state where that is an option and didn't really pay attention to what was being discussed.) I do have a friend that uses our state's VA and I don't see it relating to our homeschooling at all since she has their laws/guidelines that bind her and they are very clear that her dd is a ps student and she has no flexibility in what academics her dd does.

 

I am not explaining myself very clearly, obviously. :tongue_smilie: I don't want more regulation. I do think that the subpar standards will probably cause problems. No, I don't think homeschoolers should regulate other homeschoolers. I think that a lot of homeschoolers use co-ops as schools in place of homeschooling. Do I tell them what to do or tell them that their expectations are way below grade level? Nope (or I mention it and if they aren't open to discussion, I drop it.) But, I can vent in virtual reality that it bugs me to no end!! :lol:

 

I only know a handful of homeschoolers IRL that I respect what they do on the high school level. (And I am so incredibly thankful for them!!) I'm sorry if my saying that makes people think I am trying to take away others freedom or am inviting more regulation. :confused: It is more of a :banghead: b/c of the atmosphere my teenage kids tend to find among other homeschooled teens.

 

Guess I will back out of the conversation since obviously I have nothing constructive to add. :D

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Maybe that's my worry?

 

 

 

Oh, I don't know, I think this conversation has taken many turns, like any good conversation. And there are a couple of off-shoots so maybe I haven't paid as much attention as I should. I just get an email from one thread or another that I find intriguing and join in on the thinking it through.

 

I do believe in freedom to educate as much or as little as the family decides. I've weighed in on that one :) But I just am not sure about the topic being brought up where you don't teach your own children. I haven't totally thought that one through in my own mind, but something seems a bit like going back to public schooling when I go to these co-ops?

 

Julie

I haven't read the whole thread...so I don't know where everyone is individually coming from. I can't imagine a co-op meeting someone's educational needs unless there was homework and parental assistance/instruction outside the co-op day involved. And for me, at that point it becomes too much work, I'd rather just pick my own curriculum and teach it myself. I will say that my oldest DD is in a marine biology class that has been wonderful for her--they do experiments and activities in class and she does the required reading on her own. But that is an elementary level science class. I would expect more rigor from a high school level science program.

 

However, different people use co-ops differently, and I would hate to see them regulated. I think it's great when parents have a wide variety options and tools available to them, but it's important to use them wisely. But I'd like to see the government stay out of that.

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:iagree: with this. FWIW.....I don't think that virtual academies will impact homeschoolers b/c VAs are already regulated. (I know nothing about the reimbursement situations b/c I have never lived in a state where that is an option and didn't really pay attention to what was being discussed.) I do have a friend that uses our state's VA and I don't see it relating to our homeschooling at all since she has their laws/guidelines that bind her and they are very clear that her dd is a ps student and she has no flexibility in what academics her dd does.

 

I am not explaining myself very clearly, obviously. :tongue_smilie: I don't want more regulation. I do think that the subpar standards will probably cause problems. No, I don't think homeschoolers should regulate other homeschoolers. I think that a lot of homeschoolers use co-ops as schools in place of homeschooling. Do I tell them what to do or tell them that their expectations are way below grade level? Nope (or I mention it and if they aren't open to discussion, I drop it.) But, I can vent in virtual reality that it bugs me to no end!! :lol:

 

I only know a handful of homeschoolers IRL that I respect what they do on the high school level. (And I am so incredibly thankful for them!!) I'm sorry if my saying that makes people think I am trying to take away others freedom or am inviting more regulation. :confused: It is more of a :banghead: b/c of the atmosphere my teenage kids tend to find among other homeschooled teens.

 

Guess I will back out of the conversation since obviously I have nothing constructive to add. :D

 

I appreciate where you're coming from. Subpar homeschoolers (any subpar parents, actually) bug me too. I think it's fine to have opinions about the right and wrong way to homeschool. I'm sure it would annoy me if my kids were asking me why so-and-so only has to do 15 min. of school a week and they have to do 4 hours a day?

 

I just get annoyed when people tell me that I am personally responsible for the downfall of independent homeschooling. Our statewide homeschool orgs are on a crusade to make sure everyone knows how evil the VAs are. Whatev.

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I appreciate where you're coming from. Subpar homeschoolers (any subpar parents, actually) bug me too. I think it's fine to have opinions about the right and wrong way to homeschool. I'm sure it would annoy me if my kids were asking me why so-and-so only has to do 15 min. of school a week and they have to do 4 hours a day?

 

I just get annoyed when people tell me that I am personally responsible for the downfall of independent homeschooling. Our statewide homeschool orgs are on a crusade to make sure everyone knows how evil the VAs are. Whatev.

 

:iagree: 100%!

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I also share the common concerns on here that homeschooling not become synonymous with dropping out or an "alternative school" (i.e. a school for near-drop outs).

 

That's an interesting thought. I know public schoolers in my area will switch schools or school districts to get an easier one (or harder one). Not sure if all states allow as much switching around as Minnesota does.

 

I haven't heard of anyone choosing to homeschool because it's easier, but that's probably because it wouldn't be easier on mom. (I have known of a couple of homeschoolers who just were getting out of truancy court, which the parent is liable for, not the child. But those folks didn't plan to school at all.)

 

Julie

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But if you just let your kids do....whatever, and rest on the smug belief that any sort of "homeschooling" is better than a public school (a view I have read on this board), then it is entirely possible that "homeschooling" is not hard on Mom/Dad: s/he might go to work and leave the child alone -- in fact, this is basically what Dan Riley does in his one-year "school for a girl" : her education consists virtually entirely of watching movies, er, documentaries and writing in a diary about them, so much as I could tell. Just because one parent spends hours pouring over materials doesn't mean everyone does.

 

I also don't think all alternative schools should be condemned; in fact, I recently saw something on PBS (?) about an alternative school that really turned things around for the students, and in fact, the students were choosing to stay in the school instead of going to a traditional one. But the idea of a warehouse until one is old enough to drop out is uninspiring.

 

In this case, I do think a K-12 method could be vastly superior because at least there has been some effort put into the venture. I wonder if a K-12 type distance education model is really that different from the correspondence type model of Calvert and the boxed curriculum of other vendors? I have no experience with any of these methods, so I have no opinion. But I am not sure it is a completely new thing; rather it seems to me to be a computerized continuation. I only know one family that uses Calvert, and, while I don't really know what they do all day long, the mother, who would be at home anyway, does not seem to me to be incredibly "involved" in her kids' activities, nor do they particularly participate in outside educational activities, including even independent reading or library use. So I think there really are many different faces of homeschooling right now -- not just the typical WTM forum user.

 

Maybe there needs to be more room in the educational experience for different modes, and a different name for this than "homeschooling." This would allow distance education, combinations of public school classes (and/or community college) and home activities, tutoring, small classes with other children, and the like. But those are all separate from an educational environment created by parents.

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Stripe,

You're the first person to help my brain see where programs like K-12 might fit into the whole homeschooling picture. Up until now, I admit I've just felt it was public school trying to trick homeschoolers into thinking it was homeschool. But when I think about it, I have always felt private school ought to be an option, just like daycare ought to be an option, because some folks are just not cut out to be home all day with their kids (I've had a couple friends...). So maybe K-12 is one of those "options."

 

I do think a K-12 type option would be more of a private school option than a homeschool option. But maybe it's an option nonetheless. Hey, maybe it could even just be a catalyst, to get parents thinking about what their home education might look like.

 

Julie

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I have a few friends who have used K12. One did it because her kids were passing her up in math and she was having an increasingly difficult time making sure all of their educational needs were met (she has 4 kids). Another feels the need to have a structured program that is matched to state standards and provides direction for her. I think many people who wouldn't homeschool feel comfortable using a program like K12 because it gives direction and oversight.

 

Also, search SWB's blog--she discussed using K12 for science for her high schoolers. Apparently it includes all your lab materials, as well as a science teacher to oversee your child.

 

Also, K12 isn't always administered by the public schools. Many people use it privately and just pay for it themselves (so it would be private-school-at-home, rather than public-school-at-home).

 

At my kids' ages it isn't a program I'm interested in using, but it does have its merits, apparently.

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But if you just let your kids do....whatever, and rest on the smug belief that any sort of "homeschooling" is better than a public school (a view I have read on this board), then it is entirely possible that "homeschooling" is not hard on Mom/Dad: s/he might go to work and leave the child alone -- in fact, this is basically what Dan Riley does in his one-year "school for a girl" : her education consists virtually entirely of watching movies, er, documentaries and writing in a diary about them, so much as I could tell. Just because one parent spends hours pouring over materials doesn't mean everyone does.

 

I agree that this is a poor way to educate children.

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Maybe there needs to be more room in the educational experience for different modes, and a different name for this than "homeschooling." This would allow distance education, combinations of public school classes (and/or community college) and home activities, tutoring, small classes with other children, and the like. But those are all separate from an educational environment created by parents.

 

Stripe,

Up until now, I admit I've just felt it was public school trying to trick homeschoolers into thinking it was homeschool.

 

 

From my perspective, and in the context of our family....

 

If the work is overseen at home under the supervision/teaching/guidance of a parent, how is that not considered homeschooling? What is the litmus test? If I'm the one busting my fanny teaching my dd6 to regroup in math, sound out words, learn parts of speech, etc, morning after morning after morning -- at home at the kitchen counter or school room -- using materials supplied by K12, CVA or any ALE/VA, how is that not homeschooling? If I spend hours teaching Singapore bar models to dd7 and then report to CVA what we did for math monthly, that is homeschooling. If mom is doing the teaching, that is homeschooling, imho, regardless if you report to an outside entity. The buck stops with mom. If mom chooses to enroll in an ALE or VA, hire a tutor or outsource to a co-op, that is still homeschooling.

 

My ideal education, if finances were endless, would be to provide a neo-classical education similar to what the founding fathers experienced with tutors at home or in the community who specialize.

 

If I want to hire the best tutors for my kids, send them to co-ops or classes, or simply teach them downstairs in our schoolroom, it is my choice as the homeschool mom. My little dds go to violin, piano, choir, CC, theater & art class and soccer - and I don't consider that a private school model. Dd 13 takes 3 classes from Potters School online, a luxury for which I am extremely thankful. I discuss the material with her, proof & re-proof her essays, proctor tests, etc. I take her to science class, music, theater, etc. and a plethora of church and community service activities. That is not private schooling, it is homeschooling at its ideal for our family -- and mom putting a lot of miles on the family car.

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In terms on "online schools," I hear a lot of flack against them as they aren't "homeschooling" and the public schools are trying to trick families into this public school option. I don't know how it is elsewhere, but I do know where I live, there are at least 3 different online programs advertised on tv, radio, etc. And all of them talk about it being *public school.* On the tv ads, it is spoken by the announcer and written in big letters on the screen, "an online public school option." So I have not been able to understand the argument that they are there to trick homeschool families into public school. It really isn't hidden, at least not where I live. :001_smile:

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In fact there is an ad for K-12 that comes up on Yahoo mail, and it says something about how not everyone can do well at school or something. I guess if you think homeschooling = anything at home, and K12 can be done at home, then....it is.

 

I don't see anything wrong with having others teach your kids. I just have trouble saying that a non-parent teacher in a classroom, in a building solely designed for educational activities, with a large number of other kids, for which you are paying, being "homeschooling", but I definitely think it can be a great educational experience.

 

And personally I don't see anything morally objectionable about public schools (quite the contrary, actually), so I don't see how public-school-at-home is awful but private-school-at-home is fine.

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In terms on "online schools," I hear a lot of flack against them as they aren't "homeschooling" and the public schools are trying to trick families into this public school option. I don't know how it is elsewhere, but I do know where I live, there are at least 3 different online programs advertised on tv, radio, etc. And all of them talk about it being *public school.* On the tv ads, it is spoken by the announcer and written in big letters on the screen, "an online public school option." So I have not been able to understand the argument that they are there to trick homeschool families into public school. It really isn't hidden, at least not where I live. :001_smile:

 

Here in my state, I live in a s.d. that kind of "pioneered" the school district alternative education programs to attract home-schoolers. It is better *now* - these programs have been around 8-10 years now - but in their earlier ads, s.d. newsletters, local newspaper, etc. the program called "Home-Link" continually referred to itself as a home-schooling program or enrichment for home-schooling, etc. etc. (I would guess as recently as 2 years ago, this was still a huge mislabeling problem.)

 

To make it worse, the program used to trumpet the perceived inadequacies of a home-education and how this program was providing *needed* *crucial* support to home-schoolers.

 

The blatant message (like I said, it is better now) was that home-schoolers needed help and by golly, the public schools were going to give it to them. This type of "selling" even happened from the s.d.'s to the State Supt. and the legislature.

 

I know for sure that many local home-schooling parents pointed this unlawful labeling to the state and the local school district and I would certainly guess that this is why the "public school" label is now more prominently posted.

 

I saw ads at the beginning where there was absolutely no mention of "public schooling" at all. I think it was even called "Home-school Enrichment" going back even 10-12 years ago...

 

Btw, I am pretty sure this local district and this state (WA) were very early or "pioneering" in the Home-Link movement and so other states prob. learned the legal terminology thru modeling after WA State's programs.

 

Lisaj

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2. The existence of virtual public schools: I have yet to hear/read a compelling argument for why this undermines independent homeschooling (and I have done quite a bit of reading on this issue). Private schools do not undermine public schools and neither undermines homeschooling...I fail to see how public schools at home are any different. The VA I belong to has been around for 14 years and many more have cropped up in that time. The laws for independent homeschoolers have not changed during that time at all. As far as I know, there is no current threat to the freedom of independent homeschooling in WA. Virtual schools are under constant attack, though (by independent homeschoolers).

 

I guess my thought is that if you (general) are concerned about losing your freedom to independently homeschool your kids, then look for the weaknesses in homeschoolers, don't go attacking people who use other methods. Do what you can to encourage homeschoolers who might be struggling. Challenge people who are using the term "homeschooler" as a euphemism for "slacker". Encourage your co-op to up the standards. Start a support group. Take opportunities to compete in contests, spelling bees, etc. as a homeschooler to improve the reputation. Blaming other people for the failure in your own movement rarely brings about any positive results.

 

YOu may want to consider my (recent) previous post. In fact, these programs were originally "conceived" with the idea that homeschoolers "needed" govt. assistance, enrichment classes, tutoring, help from certified teachers, etc. etc. It was "sold" to the legislature and/or the State Supt. of Public Education in this way.

 

So, obviously, if homeschoolers flock to these programs - and that has happened in our small local community - then the legislature/school districts are saying, "see, there's a need for this" and the oioneers and many of us see that is the path to more legislation.

 

The school districts get money - anything that brings **money** brings govt. oversight.

 

Lastly, I know the leaders and many families who use s.d. public school programs for ex-homeschoolers. And the truth is, these programs have gotten more and more and more and more restrictive. Every year, the screws tighten and there are more requirements, less reimbursements, etc.

 

I actually kind of feel that these programs will "kill themselves" because the govt. wants accountability for every cent. Money's tight - where can we cut?

 

Lisaj, thankful for the freedoms

Lastly

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YOu may want to consider my (recent) previous post. In fact, these programs were originally "conceived" with the idea that homeschoolers "needed" govt. assistance, enrichment classes, tutoring, help from certified teachers, etc. etc. It was "sold" to the legislature and/or the State Supt. of Public Education in this way.

 

So, obviously, if homeschoolers flock to these programs - and that has happened in our small local community - then the legislature/school districts are saying, "see, there's a need for this" and the oioneers and many of us see that is the path to more legislation.

 

The school districts get money - anything that brings **money** brings govt. oversight.

 

Lastly, I know the leaders and many families who use s.d. public school programs for ex-homeschoolers. And the truth is, these programs have gotten more and more and more and more restrictive. Every year, the screws tighten and there are more requirements, less reimbursements, etc.

 

I actually kind of feel that these programs will "kill themselves" because the govt. wants accountability for every cent. Money's tight - where can we cut?

 

Lisaj, thankful for the freedoms

Lastly

This is not "obvious" to me. It hasn't happened in WA (or anywhere else, to my knowledge) after over a decade of these programs being in existence. The legislation hasn't changed and no one is seeking to change it.

 

And like you said, the programs get more restrictive every year and may in fact "kill themselves"--where in any of that is the threat to homeschoolers?

 

My program has been very clear that we are public school students--we even have to sign a statement of acknowledgement of the difference between home-based education and alternative learning experiences. The word "homeschool" is not on their website anywhere.

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This is not "obvious" to me. It hasn't happened in WA (or anywhere else, to my knowledge) after over a decade of these programs being in existence. The legislation hasn't changed and no one is seeking to change it.

 

And like you said, the programs get more restrictive every year and may in fact "kill themselves"--where in any of that is the threat to homeschoolers?

 

My program has been very clear that we are public school students--we even have to sign a statement of acknowledgement of the difference between home-based education and alternative learning experiences. The word "homeschool" is not on their website anywhere.

:iagree: In my state, I have heard of many public cyber schoolers leave the same to become homeschoolers eventually. In fact, after trying public cyber school for ds, I became more acquainted with homeschooling and hope to return to homeschooling and not public cyber school even though I think it is a good option. Public cyber schools IMO can often be a bridge to homeschooling since by attending public cyber schools, parents often run into homeschoolers and become more familiar with homeschooling as an option IMO.

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It hasn't happened in WA (or anywhere else, to my knowledge) after over a decade of these programs being in existence. The legislation hasn't changed and no one is seeking to change it.

 

 

 

If you are referring to ALE programs, which is what the previous poster seemed to be talking about, this is absolutely incorrect. There was a MAJOR change in regulations in 2004. And again a few years ago the screws tightened again. The state is absolutely interested in changing legislation with regard to ALE programs, and would actually be quite happy to shut them down altogether.

 

If you're talking about homeschooling independently, you're right. The homeschooling law has not changed. Thank goodness.

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If you are referring to ALE programs, which is what the previous poster seemed to be talking about, this is absolutely incorrect. There was a MAJOR change in regulations in 2004. And again a few years ago the screws tightened again. The state is absolutely interested in changing legislation with regard to ALE programs, and would actually be quite happy to shut them down altogether.

 

If you're talking about homeschooling independently, you're right. The homeschooling law has not changed. Thank goodness.

 

Yes, sorry to be unclear. I was talking about independent homeschooling. The ALE programs are fighting for their lives right now. Independent homeschooling is not being threatened.

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This conversation has many turns, huh?

Then I can't see anything wrong with it. Given my experience with co-ops, the homework, more often than not, will probably be the lesson plans that come with the curriculum. That's no different than doing Sonlight or Apologia at home.

 

I still don't see how a child can receive enough instruction in one hour of class time per week to defend the argument that the parent is no longer involved and the 1 hour per week teacher is the primary teacher.

 

When parent's believe this, and excuse themselves from their children's education, they're making a mistake.

 

 

I'm confused. I see people here complaining about the possibility of having their freedom taken away but in the same breath complaining about others that use the same freedom to educate their kids differently (not as well, etc.). Isn't that the whole point of freedom? That I get to choose what's best for my own kids without someone interfering?

 

It seems like the bottom line is that many people are concerned that the irresponsibility of some will threaten the rights of many. I think that's why we need to stay politically aware and deal with the people who CAN take away our rights. I (as a virtual schooler) can't take away anyone's rights.

SUBPAR STANDARDS in home education: This is Exactly why some are concerned about co-op or part-time options (like Veritas). MANY parents do consider this minimal instruction "enough" and do little to none at home, other than making sure the homework is complete. A Veritas program is very popular in my district and in my small life circle, I personally know several families who send their kids 2 times a week and simply read aloud a book for history and make sure the kids complete the practice math pages. They have told me they like Veritas b/c they don't have to teach, just follow up like homework. They said, "It's the best of both worlds. It's like private school with smaller classes, Christian materials are allowed, and all I have to do is make sure they do their homework." These parents read WTM and decide it's what they want, but they can't (or won't) put the work in to obtain the results. They think they're following WTM b/c their kids are staying on a schedule now that they have "accountability" to the teacher. There is no doubt in my mind that as the popularity of these types of schools spread (and it is moving fast in my home schooling community), that homeschooling will get a reputation of being easy and/or that you can home school and not be the primary teacher. I'm seeing it now and the local Veritas is only in it's 4th year (maybe 5th). And yes, it concerns me that someone who is home schooling, who is in charge of their child's education, actually needs that much accountability in order to keep on track.

 

Options are great, but the truth is, they want the best of both worlds and they're not people who would be on political watch b/c if they're not willing to put the effort in to teach, why on earth would they put the effort in to sift through politics? In my little circle, they don't. In my little circle, the same families that participate in Veritas, also participate in other co-ops and so, they're kids are home, in their houses about 1 or 2 days a week, just to finish up homework. It's a strong movement here. As the numbers grow, how can the gov't NOT look deeper into it? If these people preach the accountability is SO great, then why not be more accountable to the gov't?

 

THREAT OF MORE REGULATION VIA VA: If you combine this type of growth, with the growth of VA (which I believe are a worthwhile option, so far as rigor and strength of content), I am concerned that the message from the gov't will switch to: There are plenty of ways to educate and many are using them and they all have certified teachers and/or higher forms of accountability. To that, I say, So what? Home schoolers don't care about certification, but gov'ts do. I don't want that dangled in my face. I see the potential for hsing regulations to increase in the name of accountability.

 

Remember, I started this post b/c a home school lobbiest (20+ years on capitol hill) said it was something for which we should watch out. She spends her days with the law makers. If she's concerned, I ought to be paying attention. She said quite clearly, watch out for the intentional language of VA and how they really want to nab new home schoolers. They're hoping to keep families out of the home schooling camp and keep them in public school...follow the money trail...AND the gov't still gets paid and also keeps home schooling numbers down. One good thing about VA is at least there are mandatory state standards, so you don't get the subpar results, IF the parents are participating.

 

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l

I only know a handful of homeschoolers IRL that I respect what they do on the high school level. (And I am so incredibly thankful for them!!) I'm sorry if my saying that makes people think I am trying to take away others freedom or am inviting more regulation. :confused: It is more of a :banghead: b/c of the atmosphere my teenage kids tend to find among other homeschooled teens.

This is a clear problem here, too. You either see kids dual enrolled or not doing much. I'm fine that not everybody is on the college track, but there are a lot of video game players in our area once high school hits. Finally, my kids realize that I don't care ONE BIT if their friend only has 3 hours of school in high school...they're gonna do more than that!

 

I haven't read the whole thread...so I don't know where everyone is individually coming from. I can't imagine a co-op meeting someone's educational needs unless there was homework and parental assistance/instruction outside the co-op day involved. And for me, at that point it becomes too much work, I'd rather just pick my own curriculum and teach it myself. I will say that my oldest DD is in a marine biology class that has been wonderful for her--they do experiments and activities in class and she does the required reading on her own. But that is an elementary level science class. I would expect more rigor from a high school level science program. SUBPAR home schooling: Many, many people are quite comfortable farming out and offering EASY, super easy classes. I'm all for fun and ease in grammar years, particularly if the coop is not the main course of study. My best friends co-op is ridiculous b/c there is no rigor. Kids don't do homework. One mom actually said, "Junior High is just more practice from what they learned in elementary school. He did great in elementary school, so we don't have much to do in jr. high" Um. No. Wouldn't it be time to prepare for high school? This same mom is all for a physical science class for her 11th grader, now. Not physics, but physical science designed for 8th and 9th graders. She thinks its a tough class. She has an entire classroom of students and parents who are okay with this. In the entire school year, they will meet for 20 weeks, won't finish the book and they use it as a high school credit. This is NOT uncommon. To top it all off, b/c the teachers who might get tougher know they won't get the effort from other families, they simply dumb down everything. My best friend said, "I won't bother to do a literature class with homework b/c I know the kids won't do it." She dumbed down everything in order to meet the low standard of the subpar masses.

 

However, different people use co-ops differently, and I would hate to see them regulated. I think it's great when parents have a wide variety options and tools available to them, but it's important to use them wisely. But I'd like to see the government stay out of that.

 

I appreciate where you're coming from. Subpar homeschoolers (any subpar parents, actually) bug me too. I think it's fine to have opinions about the right and wrong way to homeschool. I'm sure it would annoy me if my kids were asking me why so-and-so only has to do 15 min. of school a week and they have to do 4 hours a day?

 

I just get annoyed when people tell me that I am personally responsible for the downfall of independent homeschooling. Our statewide homeschool orgs are on a crusade to make sure everyone knows how evil the VAs are. Whatev.

I don't have a problem with VA as another option, I am just concerned that at some point, the lines b/t ps and home schooling may cross as a result of their growing usage, particularly since they are currently categorized as public schools and b/c the marketing is rather tricky (a local friend has confusion now). I think at some point, it is likely an attempt to change the face of home schooling to a more regulated look will be supported as their success grows. I know that legally, those lines are not yet blurred, but they are already quite fuzzy amongst home schoolers (as is evident from this thread).

 

But if you just let your kids do....whatever, and rest on the smug belief that any sort of "homeschooling" is better than a public school (a view I have read on this board), then it is entirely possible that "homeschooling" is not hard on Mom/Dad: s/he might go to work and leave the child alone -- in fact, this is basically what Dan Riley does in his one-year "school for a girl" : her education consists virtually entirely of watching movies, er, documentaries and writing in a diary about them, so much as I could tell. Just because one parent spends hours pouring over materials doesn't mean everyone does.

 

I also don't think all alternative schools should be condemned; in fact, I recently saw something on PBS (?) about an alternative school that really turned things around for the students, and in fact, the students were choosing to stay in the school instead of going to a traditional one. But the idea of a warehouse until one is old enough to drop out is uninspiring.

 

In this case, I do think a K-12 method could be vastly superior because at least there has been some effort put into the venture. I wonder if a K-12 type distance education model is really that different from the correspondence type model of Calvert and the boxed curriculum of other vendors? I have no experience with any of these methods, so I have no opinion. But I am not sure it is a completely new thing; rather it seems to me to be a computerized continuation. I only know one family that uses Calvert, and, while I don't really know what they do all day long, the mother, who would be at home anyway, does not seem to me to be incredibly "involved" in her kids' activities, nor do they particularly participate in outside educational activities, including even independent reading or library use. So I think there really are many different faces of homeschooling right now -- not just the typical WTM forum user.

 

Maybe there needs to be more room in the educational experience for different modes, and a different name for this than "homeschooling." This would allow distance education, combinations of public school classes (and/or community college) and home activities, tutoring, small classes with other children, and the like. But those are all separate from an educational environment created by parents.

:iagree:

 

Here in my state, I live in a s.d. that kind of "pioneered" the school district alternative education programs to attract home-schoolers. It is better *now* - these programs have been around 8-10 years now - but in their earlier ads, s.d. newsletters, local newspaper, etc. the program called "Home-Link" continually referred to itself as a home-schooling program or enrichment for home-schooling, etc. etc. (I would guess as recently as 2 years ago, this was still a huge mislabeling problem.)

 

To make it worse, the program used to trumpet the perceived inadequacies of a home-education and how this program was providing *needed* *crucial* support to home-schoolers.

 

The blatant message (like I said, it is better now) was that home-schoolers needed help and by golly, the public schools were going to give it to them. This type of "selling" even happened from the s.d.'s to the State Supt. and the legislature.

 

I know for sure that many local home-schooling parents pointed this unlawful labeling to the state and the local school district and I would certainly guess that this is why the "public school" label is now more prominently posted.

 

I saw ads at the beginning where there was absolutely no mention of "public schooling" at all. I think it was even called "Home-school Enrichment" going back even 10-12 years ago...

 

Btw, I am pretty sure this local district and this state (WA) were very early or "pioneering" in the Home-Link movement and so other states prob. learned the legal terminology thru modeling after WA State's programs.

 

Lisaj

Yup.

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From my perspective, and in the context of our family....

 

If the work is overseen at home under the supervision/teaching/guidance of a parent, how is that not considered homeschooling? What is the litmus test? If I'm the one busting my fanny teaching my dd6 to regroup in math, sound out words, learn parts of speech, etc, morning after morning after morning -- at home at the kitchen counter or school room -- using materials supplied by K12, CVA or any ALE/VA, how is that not homeschooling? If I spend hours teaching Singapore bar models to dd7 and then report to CVA what we did for math monthly, that is homeschooling. If mom is doing the teaching, that is homeschooling, imho, regardless if you report to an outside entity. The buck stops with mom. If mom chooses to enroll in an ALE or VA, hire a tutor or outsource to a co-op, that is still homeschooling.

This post is exactly the point. Legally, you are public schooling. In your mind and lifestyle, you are home schooling. The line is now blurred and your family could Easily be the poster child for greater regulation. I can hear it now, "She does whatever she wants and we make sure she's covering everything. Everyone can do this. Everyone can be under stricter regulation, just like this superior home educator. The gov't is meeting her needs, she's has some freedom, and we can regulate to our hearts content."

Beth, I read your blog. You are doing a great job and I can see the lure of $$...I'd sure like some. Your post is the heart of the issue.

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THREAT OF MORE REGULATION VIA VA: If you combine this type of growth, with the growth of VA (which I believe are a worthwhile option, so far as rigor and strength of content), I am concerned that the message from the gov't will switch to: There are plenty of ways to educate and many are using them and they all have certified teachers and/or higher forms of accountability. To that, I say, So what? Home schoolers don't care about certification, but gov'ts do. I don't want that dangled in my face. I see the potential for hsing regulations to increase in the name of accountability.

 

Remember, I started this post b/c a home school lobbiest (20+ years on capitol hill) said it was something for which we should watch out. She spends her days with the law makers. If she's concerned, I ought to be paying attention. She said quite clearly, watch out for the intentional language of VA and how they really want to nab new home schoolers. They're hoping to keep families out of the home schooling camp and keep them in public school...follow the money trail...AND the gov't still gets paid and also keeps home schooling numbers down. One good thing about VA is at least there are mandatory state standards, so you don't get the subpar results, IF the parents are participating.

 

 

I don't know. I don't mean to presume that I know more than she does....but she does make her living off of people who independently homeschool and fear its demise. Groups like HSLDA lose members if people do VAs because someone who is in a VA doesn't need them. Our statewide homeschool organization is the same way--they host events to educate people on the evils of VAs and how they're responsible for the downfall of independent homeschooling. So now there's this war between independent homeschoolers and people who use VAs, and I know of situations where it has gotten ugly. I wish we could coexist, but I guess I can understand how someone who has been made to believe that I am responsible for their potential loss of freedom would feel frustrated. I can definitely see how if independent homeschooling went away and the gov't had a monopoly on education again, it would lead to increased regulation.

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I don't know. I don't mean to presume that I know more than she does....but she does make her living off of people who independently homeschool and fear its demise. Groups like HSLDA lose members if people do VAs because someone who is in a VA doesn't need them. Our statewide homeschool organization is the same way--they host events to educate people on the evils of VAs and how they're responsible for the downfall of independent homeschooling. So now there's this war between independent homeschoolers and people who use VAs, and I know of situations where it has gotten ugly. I wish we could coexist, but I guess I can understand how someone who has been made to believe that I am responsible for their potential loss of freedom would feel frustrated. I can definitely see how if independent homeschooling went away and the gov't had a monopoly on education again, it would lead to increased regulation.

She does, now...but that wasn't always the case. She's a pioneer with jail time, so she can be ultra-defensive, although I can easily understand why.

 

I refer to Beth's post and my response. Even here, in this conversation, I really believe the lines are blurring and I can see how a K12ish VA, can turn into Beth's VA, can crisscross the lines of ps and hs and easily place the WA state regulations on your state and very quickly mine b/c the model is working so well in Beth's state (her blog is great). Her family is a perfect mix of home schooling and gov't regulation. If you throw in the $, there are a lot of families that might consider the option. Honestly, I'd have to soul search to decide if I would take the option. That money would mean lessons for my children that they are not getting now. That $ might make a considerable difference on whether or not we could go to the museum, zoo, theatre, etc. I'd have to consider it.

 

My whole point, though, is the lines are easily blurred and we need to be mindful b/c these options are already affecting "home schoolers." I have always thought of Beth as a home schooler; without even knowing that technically, she is a public schooler.....blurry.

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If mom is doing the teaching, that is homeschooling, imho, regardless if you report to an outside entity. The buck stops with mom. If mom chooses to enroll in an ALE or VA, hire a tutor or outsource to a co-op, that is still homeschooling.

 

I guess I don't really understand this, though.

 

If I hire a tutor for my child, who teaches all subjects, and I pay the tutor, is that homeschooling?

 

If I purchase a "box curriculum" that someone else has planned (e.g. Calvert) and execute it at home, is that homeschooling?

 

If I arrange for my child to subscribe to a computerized program (via the internet or not) such as K-12 or online tutoring, where I am not involved beyond the selection of the program, is that homeschooling?

 

If I arrange for my child to have access to a bunch of educational material, and I let the child read and perform activities on her own, with minimal involvement by me, is that homeschooling?

 

If I send my child to a "co-op" that consists of a specially purchased/rented building used ONLY by that group for educational purposes, where another person teaches a group of children all subjects, where the teacher only decides the content and style of the presentation, and I pay that teacher, is that homeschooling?

 

If I go into my child's private school and arrange for her to be in a more advanced reading class and receive special math instruction, subject to my opinion about what she should be learning, is that homeschooling?

 

If I do lots of research and pick a really great school (public, private, charter, whatever), and then discuss the work with my child every night and help him with his homework and provide outside enrichment and trips to the library and an intellectual atmosphere, is that homeschooling?

 

And is it different to say "my child is homeschooled" and "I homeschool my child"? Do these imply different things?

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I'll bite :) I would first classify that these should all be under the grand umbrella of School Choice, whereby the Parent is ultimately responsible for the education of their child. According to your definitions, here's what I'd call them. YMMV :)

I guess I don't really understand this, though.

 

If I hire a tutor for my child, who teaches all subjects, and I pay the tutor, is that homeschooling? No. It's private tutoring (paid for or not)

 

If I purchase a "box curriculum" that someone else has planned (e.g. Calvert) and execute it at home, is that homeschooling? Yes. Having pre-planned curriculum does not delineate from home education, So long as, the parent is doing the teaching.

 

If I arrange for my child to subscribe to a computerized program (via the internet or not) such as K-12 or online tutoring, where I am not involved beyond the selection of the program, is that homeschooling? No. That is distance learning.

 

If I arrange for my child to have access to a bunch of educational material, and I let the child read and perform activities on her own, with minimal involvement by me, is that homeschooling? I think independent learning, in the case of older students (high school), that is encouraged, and materials provided by parents is home schooling....a result of years of teachers training their students!

 

If I send my child to a "co-op" that consists of a specially purchased/rented building used ONLY by that group for educational purposes, where another person teaches a group of children all subjects, where the teacher only decides the content and style of the presentation, and I pay that teacher, is that homeschooling? If it's for all classes, no. Sounds like private school taught in a cottage/charter style to me. If it's for one or two classes, I'd call that tutorial enrichment and would not detract from home schooling. I might even refer to my state laws that indicate that no more than half of the child's classes can be outside classes to be classified as a home schooler.

 

If I go into my child's private school and arrange for her to be in a more advanced reading class and receive special math instruction, subject to my opinion about what she should be learning, is that homeschooling? No, that's child advocacy.

 

If I do lots of research and pick a really great school (public, private, charter, whatever), and then discuss the work with my child every night and help him with his homework and provide outside enrichment and trips to the library and an intellectual atmosphere, is that homeschooling? No. that's responsible parenting.

 

And is it different to say "my child is homeschooled" and "I homeschool my child"? Do these imply different things?

Yes. If you're not doing the teaching, you're not schooling.

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Her family is a perfect mix of home schooling and gov't regulation.

 

Who is regulating me? No one. I'm not doing anything different now than before I enrolled in CVA. I use the same curriculum and resources as I did in the past. Before, I paid out-of-pocket for the enrichment classes. Now, CVA pays for a portion of them. But it has not changed one iota of what I am teaching. Do I seem like the type of mom who would be regulated? :)

 

Thanks for the compliments on my blog. The theater visits, zoo, soccer, etc. are all paid for by hubby. CVA pays for art class & music. By the grace of God I can afford them even if CVA were not in the picture. I just love, love, love that my taxes are covering a bit of it now.

 

ETA: I stated before that CVA is aware of my faith-based materials (via links through my blog) that I used. For official paperwork purposes, I deleted all the faith-based materials off my 'student learning plans' at CVA. I will report to CVA only on materials that are secular. CVA told me that what I do on my own time with my students in un-funded subjects is my business.

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She does, now...but that wasn't always the case. She's a pioneer with jail time, so she can be ultra-defensive, although I can easily understand why.

 

I refer to Beth's post and my response. Even here, in this conversation, I really believe the lines are blurring and I can see how a K12ish VA, can turn into Beth's VA, can crisscross the lines of ps and hs and easily place the WA state regulations on your state and very quickly mine b/c the model is working so well in Beth's state (her blog is great). Her family is a perfect mix of home schooling and gov't regulation. If you throw in the $, there are a lot of families that might consider the option. Honestly, I'd have to soul search to decide if I would take the option. That money would mean lessons for my children that they are not getting now. That $ might make a considerable difference on whether or not we could go to the museum, zoo, theatre, etc. I'd have to consider it.

 

My whole point, though, is the lines are easily blurred and we need to be mindful b/c these options are already affecting "home schoolers." I have always thought of Beth as a home schooler; without even knowing that technically, she is a public schooler.....blurry.

 

I get what you're saying....but legally, it isn't blurry at all. Legally, we are public schoolers (I'm in the same VA as Beth). Functionally, we are homeschoolers. Functionally, all homeschoolers are different--there are unschoolers and school-in-a-boxers and classical schoolers and Charlotte Mason followers. There are people who use co-ops for the bulk of their kids' educations and people who use co-ops for enrichment and people who don't use co-ops at all and people who use them for socialization but not classes. It would be impossible to attach an accurate label to each individual form of education, which is probably why so many people use "homeschooler". Really what they mean is "not full-time brick & mortar public or private schooler". Functionally it is definitely blurry. But legally it is very clear.

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I get what you're saying....but legally, it isn't blurry at all. Legally, we are public schoolers (I'm in the same VA as Beth). Functionally, we are homeschoolers. Functionally, all homeschoolers are different--there are unschoolers and school-in-a-boxers and classical schoolers and Charlotte Mason followers. There are people who use co-ops for the bulk of their kids' educations and people who use co-ops for enrichment and people who don't use co-ops at all and people who use them for socialization but not classes. It would be impossible to attach an accurate label to each individual form of education, which is probably why so many people use "homeschooler". Really what they mean is "not full-time brick & mortar public or private schooler". Functionally it is definitely blurry. But legally it is very clear.

 

:iagree:

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Yes. If you're not doing the teaching, you're not schooling.

 

I think my dark circles might imply otherwise...

 

If I'm ultimately responsible for dc's education (purchasing materials, overseeing, managing, teaching, correcting, proofing, etc) that is homeschooling.

 

If Mom assigns the grade (as I do), that is homeschooling. (I submit the Alg 1 & Spanish 2 grades which will go on dd's high school transcript -- even though dd watches Prof Mosely dvds and meets with a Spanish tutor.)

 

Even when dd7 is using TT4 (gasp!), I am still homeschooling. I could go on but I won't bore the audience. :)

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I'll bite :) I would first classify that these should all be under the grand umbrella of School Choice, whereby the Parent is ultimately responsible for the education of their child. According to your definitions, here's what I'd call them. YMMV :) Yes. If you're not doing the teaching, you're not schooling.

 

I think I agree.

 

I had kids in public school. They turned out okay. I'm not saying it's all bad. But I was very involved in their schooling, I drove them around, I attended events from concerts to field trips, I was a room mother who even planned some classroom games :) , I bought instruments and other materials, I stayed up late helping them with papers, and in some cases I even chose their teachers and their courses and which school they would attend. But I was not homeschooling.

 

The lines are very blurry :tongue_smilie: I think the line that homeschoolers must defend is the right to teach our own children in our own way? Not sure how to word that correctly.

 

At one convention, I remember from HSLDA talking about Alaska and how virtual school situations tempted families by offering computers (which weren't as common as they are today), and were taken over so much that even conventions and support groups were required to be run by the state.

http://www.hslda.org/courtreport/v18n1/v18n101.asp

 

I realize that not all administrators are going to stick to the rules as much as others, but the worry to me is about the letter of the law and the slow creeping of the letter of the law...

 

Julie

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At one convention, I remember from HSLDA talking about Alaska and how virtual school situations tempted families by offering computers (which weren't as common as they are today), and were taken over so much that even conventions and support groups were required to be run by the state.

http://www.hslda.org/courtreport/v18n1/v18n101.asp

 

I'd be interested in hearing from someone in Alaska on that...HSLDA has a tendency to fearmonger. I will follow the link though...

 

Ok, just read the part of the article on Alaska. It says that religious publishers aren't allowed to sell books at a government "homeschool" conference. I didn't see where it says that the gov't runs conventions and support groups. Maybe I'm missing something?

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Who is regulating me? No one. I'm not doing anything different now than before I enrolled in CVA. I use the same curriculum and resources as I did in the past. Before, I paid out-of-pocket for the enrichment classes. Now, CVA pays for a portion of them. But it has not changed one iota of what I am teaching. Do I seem like the type of mom who would be regulated? :)

 

Thanks for the compliments on my blog. The theater visits, zoo, soccer, etc. are all paid for by hubby. CVA pays for art class & music. By the grace of God I can afford them even if CVA were not in the picture. I just love, love, love that my taxes are covering a bit of it now.

Most of us are regulated in some way (we must submit annual evaluations (we have options as to what those evals are, we have a req'd 180 days, must submit letters of intent, etc), but you do have some regulation that I currently do not (monthly (I think you said, monthly) reports to give to your overseer (sorry, don't remember the title and don't have time to hunt for it, I don't have an overseer assigned to me). That monthly oversight is not okay for me (even though my families schooling practices would always produce excellent reports...that incidentally, would look a Lot like yours). All I'm saying is this: the allowance of those monthly reports, for the $$ (which I understand, it IS tempting for me & the opportunity does not even exist here) does give a "foot in the door" for a greater looksy for the gov't to increase regulation (which I define as gov't oversight). Your situation appears to be the middle ground between free K12 only and curriculum choice w/ refund...the middle ground between me & Rosy (at least it appears so). I promise I'm not attacking you. I reiterate I think you're doing a great job and that you find what works best for your family. I'm okay with that, entirely, I'm just sayin'...anytime someone gets more regulation, it gets those regulators thinkin' Everybody else can have that same regulation (I submit seatbelt laws, drinking age, etc as examples of how legislation spreads across a nation).

 

I get what you're saying....but legally, it isn't blurry at all. Legally, we are public schoolers (I'm in the same VA as Beth). Functionally, we are homeschoolers. Functionally, all homeschoolers are different--there are unschoolers and school-in-a-boxers and classical schoolers and Charlotte Mason followers. There are people who use co-ops for the bulk of their kids' educations and people who use co-ops for enrichment and people who don't use co-ops at all and people who use them for socialization but not classes. It would be impossible to attach an accurate label to each individual form of education, which is probably why so many people use "homeschooler". Really what they mean is "not full-time brick & mortar public or private schooler". Functionally it is definitely blurry. But legally it is very clear.
Rosy, I'm glad you get what I mean. :001_smile: I do recognize the beauty of all the situations, I'm just suggesting that one step toward regulation for one is at least a seed planted for regulation for everyone. That is how big gov't works...and education is a forest of big gov't.

 

I think my dark circles might imply otherwise...

 

If I'm ultimately responsible for dc's education (purchasing materials, overseeing, managing, teaching, correcting, proofing, etc) that is homeschooling.

 

If Mom assigns the grade (as I do), that is homeschooling. (I submit the Alg 1 & Spanish 2 grades which will go on dd's high school transcript -- even though dd watches Prof Mosely dvds and meets with a Spanish tutor.)

 

Even when dd7 is using TT4 (gasp!), I am still homeschooling. I could go on but I won't bore the audience. :)

I use Mosely, too...I think of it as administering his education, but not teaching :) If I help out a bit, I think of it as homework (like a ps mom would help if they could). It's hard not to get into semantics, isn't it?

 

I think I agree.

 

I had kids in public school. They turned out okay. I'm not saying it's all bad. But I was very involved in their schooling, I drove them around, I attended events from concerts to field trips, I was a room mother who even planned some classroom games :) , I bought instruments and other materials, I stayed up late helping them with papers, and in some cases I even chose their teachers and their courses and which school they would attend. But I was not homeschooling.

 

The lines are very blurry :tongue_smilie: I think the line that homeschoolers must defend is the right to teach our own children in our own way? Not sure how to word that correctly. Me, too. That means less regulation, imho, not more.

 

At one convention, I remember from HSLDA talking about Alaska and how virtual school situations tempted families by offering computers (which weren't as common as they are today), and were taken over so much that even conventions and support groups were required to be run by the state.

http://www.hslda.org/courtreport/v18n1/v18n101.asp

 

I realize that not all administrators are going to stick to the rules as much as others, but the worry to me is about the letter of the law and the slow creeping of the letter of the law...

 

Julie

Thanks for that link. I'll have to learn more about this. I agree that HSLDA often gets a little fearmongerish...although, I appreciate their position in many areas.

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Most of us are regulated in some way (from Tina's post). I don't agree. "Accountability" is different than regulation. I have to test on certain years, the state pays for the test, and there is NO feedback regarding test results - I am required to test, but not regulated based on those test results. How many people are "required" to change thier homeschooling when they submit their portfolios? Having someone look at or over your work is not regulating their work.

Yes, let's keep an eye on our freedoms. I'll be the first to fight for my right to homeschool. But I'd also like the educational monopoly in the U.S. derailed and our tax dollars going to educational systems that we choose. Perhaps Beth's state will be the first to lead the way for that, rather than ushering in regulation?

I can agree on accountability, except that records are kept and that lends itself to regulation. They can never regulate without some numerical presentation. The very existence of the "numbers" gets the ball rolling.

 

I'd like to have more to say about my tax dollars, too; but in Beth's state, the state declares no sectarian materials will be paid for, that's too much regulation and not enough choice for where my money would go (for this home schooler). You're much more optimistic than I on this one ;0)

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I use Mosely, too...I think of it as administering his education, but not teaching :) If I help out a bit, I think of it as homework (like a ps mom would help if they could). It's hard not to get into semantics, isn't it?

 

 

 

I consider it teaching.

Dh spent 3 hours going over each lesson in section 4 with dd on Sunday afternoon to prep her for the week's lessons. We don't just pop in the dvd and run. We actually teach the material. That is homeschooling, not just administering. We probably spend more time hands-on teaching our kids than average. Many give their kids a text, workbook, computer program and let the kid 'teach' themselves. That is more a threat to the homeschool movement than what my family (and other CVA families) are doing, imho.

 

It's absurd to assume that a homeschool parent who uses outside resources isn't homeschooling. Does every mom or dad represented here on these boards sit with their students during every grammar, comp, lit, math, science, history, Latin, etc. lesson and read the text to their child? I spend approx 5 hours/day sitting with them, reading, etc but they still do some learning independently (thank Jesus).

 

As far as govt regulation increasing due to us who use ALEs or VAs, I am not convinced of this theory. If a parent wants to steer clear of those entities, that is their choice. I would not fear doomsday for the homeschooling movement because I get my dds' art or music classes paid for by my own tax dollars.

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But I'd also like the educational monopoly in the U.S. derailed and our tax dollars going to educational systems that we choose. Perhaps Beth's state will be the first to lead the way for that, rather than ushering in regulation?

 

:iagree:

 

This thread has been extremely enlightening on a debate that I hadn't heard before. Thanks to the input of Kai and others, I have gone to my CVA liaison and removed all references in my 'official' paperwork of anything that would be considered remotely faith-based. Thankfully we already had a bunch of secular materials listed so nothing has changed in terms of what I am actually teaching and what my dc are actually learning OR the money I will be receiving.

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I'd like to have more to say about my tax dollars, too; but in Beth's state, the state declares no sectarian materials will be paid for, that's too much regulation and not enough choice for where my money would go (for this home schooler). You're much more optimistic than I on this one ;0)

This doesn't mean sectarian materials can't be *used*, just that the VA won't pay for them. I can determine that my allocation will be used entirely on lessons and use Sonlight or Bob Jones or whatever.

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Guest Cheryl in SoCal
This doesn't mean sectarian materials can't be *used*, just that the VA won't pay for them. I can determine that my allocation will be used entirely on lessons and use Sonlight or Bob Jones or whatever.

 

In CA sectarian materials can't be used even if you buy them yourself when you are part of a public school program (charter, etc). It's in the education code.

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In CA sectarian materials can't be used even if you buy them yourself when you are part of a public school program (charter, etc). It's in the education code.

 

How come the government can use our tax dollars to fund a monopoly that promotes a worldview (religion) that I fundamentally disagree with?

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In CA sectarian materials can't be used even if you buy them yourself when you are part of a public school program (charter, etc). It's in the education code.

 

:confused: So if your dc are in brick and mortar public schools in CA, when they come home (or during breaks or vacations) you can't supplement with Abeka or MFW or whatever? And how would anyone know? Do they come into your home and inspect your bookshelves? I am not being snarky, I am genuinely confused.

 

I can understand not using tax dollars for religious materials, but I can't wrap my mind around HOW they (the gov't) can regulate what I use my private money to purchase or how I use it. How does that work? :confused:

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I can understand not using tax dollars for religious materials, but I can't wrap my mind around HOW they (the gov't) can regulate what I use my private money to purchase or how I use it. How does that work? :confused:

 

Well, in MN, our district can ask to see our materials, our students' work, etc. We aren't under all the CA regulations, but if I were in some kind of charter school, they could ask to see all materials.

 

And the other thing is that if it requires me to "sneak" then that isn't good in my book.

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Well, in MN, our district can ask to see our materials, our students' work, etc. We aren't under all the CA regulations, but if I were in some kind of charter school, they could ask to see all materials.

 

And the other thing is that if it requires me to "sneak" then that isn't good in my book.

 

I understand that. But I cannot see how what I use my own money for can be regulated in that way. :confused: People who use brick and mortar schools (tax payer funded) can use whatever they want to supplement their dc's education. How is this any different?

 

Incidentally, "sneaking" to me would be trying to use public funds for religious material and hide it. Using my own money is my right.

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This doesn't mean sectarian materials can't be *used*, just that the VA won't pay for them. I can determine that my allocation will be used entirely on lessons and use Sonlight or Bob Jones or whatever.

 

In CA sectarian materials can't be used even if you buy them yourself when you are part of a public school program (charter, etc). It's in the education code.
This is a slippery slope I am concerned about. Like Alaska, it starts with one thing and quickly turns to another.

 

How come the government can use our tax dollars to fund a monopoly that promotes a worldview (religion) that I fundamentally disagree with?
That's a good one. Here's one idea, most people don't realize that worldview can be religion and so, they just think it's about academics...b/c gov't is too big...I guess the list could get pretty long

 

Well, in MN, our district can ask to see our materials, our students' work, etc. We aren't under all the CA regulations, but if I were in some kind of charter school, they could ask to see all materials.

 

And the other thing is that if it requires me to "sneak" then that isn't good in my book.

Not good in my book either.

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So, people who use public schools or charters or VAs can't take their dc to church? Can't own bibles?

 

I think we are blurring two different things here. You cannot use tax dollars to buy religious materials. You cannot use tax dollars to start a religious based charter. But you can buy whatever you want with your own money.

 

And this whole sneaking thing is a red herring. :-/ Nobody is suggesting sneaking about anything. :glare: One can use public schools, or charters, or VAs, and not buy religious materials or use religious materials related to it and then use their OWN money to buy whatever they want and there is NO sneaking involved.

 

I find it insulting to insinuate that the use of religious materials is "sneaking" if I am not using public money to buy them!

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But I cannot see how what I use my own money for can be regulated in that way. :confused: People who use brick and mortar schools (tax payer funded) can use whatever they want to supplement their dc's education. How is this any different?

 

Incidentally, "sneaking" to me would be trying to use public funds for religious material and hide it. Using my own money is my right.

 

I am not sure about this, but I think a possible difference is that supplementing happens outside the system, not within it. If you work within, are supervised by, or are being granted a transcript and a diploma by the public school district, then you are working within their system, which includes rules and regulations about which materials are acceptable and which are not. You may choose to supplement an approved curriculum just as a parent of a school-going child would, but probably not use a non-approved choice as the main course of study for a subject that is going to be approved/validated/entered on the transcript by the public school system.

 

In California, in legal terms there is no such thing as "homeschooling," believe it or not. Anyone teaching their kids at home is assumed to be operating on an "independent study plan" which basically means doing what kids in the schoolhouse do, only at home. To do otherwise you have to register as a private school -- and materials used by private schools do not have to be regulated by the state; I'm not sure whether or to what extent this changes if the private school is WASC accredited -- or with an umbrella school which may or may not impose limitations on what kind of curriculum is acceptable.

 

I think this is how the official line goes in my state, at any rate.

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I understand that. But I cannot see how what I use my own money for can be regulated in that way. :confused: People who use brick and mortar schools (tax payer funded) can use whatever they want to supplement their dc's education. How is this any different?

 

I think you could only be regulated within the requirements of the law. If the law requires your child to be in school each day for so many hours, and requires that your student be taught certain subjects, then the state has a right to check up on that. If you're part of a publicly funded school district, then I believe they would be obligated not to allow anything that would be outside of any laws about public school materials being used during any legally required subjects and required school days. Some administrators might not check everything, but the letter of the law I think would mean that all materials used during the legally required instruction time are accepted according to all laws regarding materials used in public schools.

 

Probably too confusing, but I can see that it's different than after school enrichment materials.

Julie

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Guest Cheryl in SoCal
:confused: So if your dc are in brick and mortar public schools in CA, when they come home (or during breaks or vacations) you can't supplement with Abeka or MFW or whatever? And how would anyone know? Do they come into your home and inspect your bookshelves? I am not being snarky, I am genuinely confused.

 

I can understand not using tax dollars for religious materials, but I can't wrap my mind around HOW they (the gov't) can regulate what I use my private money to purchase or how I use it. How does that work? :confused:

 

You can do that because you are using that in addition to the public school curriculum, not instead of the public school curriculum. If you are part of a public school program (charter, etc) you could supplement with Christian curriculum outside school hours but all school courses must be non-sectarian. The government can regulate it because when you join a charter/etc you are placing yourself under the authority of the government.

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So, people who use public schools or charters or VAs can't take their dc to church? Can't own bibles?

 

I think we are blurring two different things here. You cannot use tax dollars to buy religious materials. You cannot use tax dollars to start a religious based charter. But you can buy whatever you want with your own money.

 

And this whole sneaking thing is a red herring. :-/ Nobody is suggesting sneaking about anything. :glare: One can use public schools, or charters, or VAs, and not buy religious materials or use religious materials related to it and then use their OWN money to buy whatever they want and there is NO sneaking involved.

 

I find it insulting to insinuate that the use of religious materials is "sneaking" if I am not using public money to buy them!

Going to church is not part of school. You can do whatever you want outside of school hours but if you are part of a public school program you are subject to the same laws as all public schools, which means all the instruction must be non-sectarian. You can supplement with whatever you choose but it must be in addition to the non-sectarian curriculum and outside school hours, the same as if they were in a brick and mortar school.

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Guest Cheryl in SoCal
How come the government can use our tax dollars to fund a monopoly that promotes a worldview (religion) that I fundamentally disagree with?

 

Because refuse to acknowledge that it's a religion.

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Guest Cheryl in SoCal
I understand that. But I cannot see how what I use my own money for can be regulated in that way. :confused: People who use brick and mortar schools (tax payer funded) can use whatever they want to supplement their dc's education. How is this any different?

 

Incidentally, "sneaking" to me would be trying to use public funds for religious material and hide it. Using my own money is my right.

 

It's not your right if you are willingly placing yourself under the government's authority. I would have no problem breaking the rules if I had no other choice but I do have a choice so I won't place myself under the authority of any institution whose rules I won't follow.

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In CA sectarian materials can't be used even if you buy them yourself when you are part of a public school program (charter, etc). It's in the education code.

This is not the law in WA.

 

 

Well, in MN, our district can ask to see our materials, our students' work, etc. We aren't under all the CA regulations, but if I were in some kind of charter school, they could ask to see all materials.

 

And the other thing is that if it requires me to "sneak" then that isn't good in my book.

 

We are not required to show anyone any work. Our requirements are very clearly laid out--a weekly check-in by the kids, a detailed monthly check-in by the parents, a written learning plan at the beginning of the year, a standardized test (which is the law in WA for independent homeschoolers as well). It's possible that the rules will change at some point, but that's true in every area of life, regardless of educational status.

 

I'm not sneaking anything. I tell them what I am required to tell them. At your job (theoretically) are you required to tell your boss what you do on the weekend?

 

This is a slippery slope I am concerned about. Like Alaska, it starts with one thing and quickly turns to another.

 

The only thing that has changed in Alaska is that the gov't (within a few months of the program's inception) decided that it couldn't fund religious materials. Not a big deal. Further, no one is trapped into using that program. If the regulations become too stringent, one can disenroll. Also, they are legally bound by the rules they set. They can't just decide one day to authorize home visits. They have to put this in the handbook and obtain agreement by the parents of the policy change.

 

So, people who use public schools or charters or VAs can't take their dc to church? Can't own bibles?

 

I think we are blurring two different things here. You cannot use tax dollars to buy religious materials. You cannot use tax dollars to start a religious based charter. But you can buy whatever you want with your own money.

 

And this whole sneaking thing is a red herring. :-/ Nobody is suggesting sneaking about anything. :glare: One can use public schools, or charters, or VAs, and not buy religious materials or use religious materials related to it and then use their OWN money to buy whatever they want and there is NO sneaking involved.

 

I find it insulting to insinuate that the use of religious materials is "sneaking" if I am not using public money to buy them!

:iagree:

 

You can do that because you are using that in addition to the public school curriculum, not instead of the public school curriculum. If you are part of a public school program (charter, etc) you could supplement with Christian curriculum outside school hours but all school courses must be non-sectarian. The government can regulate it because when you join a charter/etc you are placing yourself under the authority of the government.

If it came down to it, one could teach a gov't approved science course and a separate creation science course. That would be one way to comply with the law. I'm sure there are others.

 

It's not your right if you are willingly placing yourself under the government's authority. I would have no problem breaking the rules if I had no other choice but I do have a choice so I won't place myself under the authority of any institution whose rules I won't follow.

I am following the rules of my VA. The rules of my VA and many others allow me to teach my children as I choose using the materials I choose.

 

I've also seen mention of "school hours". We don't have "school hours". It's not like I am transformed into an automaton of the State from 8:30-3:00. It is an Alternative Learning Experience and is bound by different laws than traditional public school, private school, independent homeschool, etc.

 

I have still yet to see how my use of a VA undermines independent homeschooling. One could theorize that "one person allowing regulation opens the door for regulation for everyone" but I haven't seen any evidence of that. Even by HSLDA, the case studies given were of gov't entities requiring increasing control of the learning experience, but it didn't effect private schools or homeschools that didn't receive gov't funds.

 

Bottom line: do VAs undermine independent homeschooling? If yes, prove it and make your case as to what should be done about it. If my choices do not undermine your choices, you don't have the right to determine whether my choices are right or wrong. As far as I can tell, VAs do not undermine independent homeschooling; therefore, my decision to use or not use on is none of anyone else's business. If I choose to submit myself to the gov't for my childrens education and am willing to follow certain requirements as a result, I am not hurting anyone and will not be made to feel guilty for doing what is best for my kids.

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