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I always get paranoid this time of year. Everybody and their brother ask the kids if school has started yet, how they like it, etc... The kids then say they're homeschooled and most of the time we get that funny stare and an awkward 'ohhhh'. It freaks me out a little.

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I'll say yes. I like having a lawyer at my fingertips in case a social worker is standing on my porch. I've been a member for years.

 

If all they were was a lawyer safety net, then I'd be fine with them. There are people out there with crazy families/neighbors that live just to create drama and trouble for people.

 

But the last time I looked at them, and I admit it's been a few years at this point, but they gave me the feeling they were using that as a front, but had a different mission. And it certainly wasn't to help all homeschoolers.

 

I view them as a scary organization. Not because they can't be helpful, but because they seem to want to use homeschools to push their own agenda.

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I always get paranoid this time of year.

 

Yeah, they feed off fear (imo).

 

I have social workers in my home on a very regular basis; but even before that, I couldn't see being worried about it when I was homeschooling legally.

 

So decide whether you want to act out of fear.

Look also at what kinds of cases they take (so many people think they take all, but they don't).

Then look at their activities and see if you really want to be a part of that.

Consider if the cost is worth it.

 

Really, it probably isn't life changing regardless of what you decide.

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Nope

 

I wholeheartedly disagree with their "mission." If they stuck to homeschooling issues it might be different but they do not so they won't get one cent from me.

 

:iagree:

 

I really don't get the paranoia, honestly. Thirty years ago, sure. But not today. I was just reading an article in the paper about how Detroit school officials would be going door-to-door trying to get kids enrolled in school, because attendance is so low. I'm not concerned. If somebody comes to my door, I'll tell them we're homeschooling. If for some reason they were to send CPS after me--something I think there's basically no chance of happening--I'd tell CPS we're homeschooling. I decided that I probably will send the district a letter saying we're homeschooling (in MI reporting is voluntary, and I generally don't do it), but I'm just not at all worried about CPS.

 

Are there any recent cases where a child has been removed from their parents home simply because the parent was homeschooling? (I'm not talking about situations where there was an allegation of child abuse.) I'm not aware of any. AFAIK, all of the cases where a parent has been forced to send a child to school have involved custody disputes, and the HSLDA will not get involved in those. So, basically, the only time you might be in a situation where your right to homeschool will be genuinely threatened legally, they will not provide you with legal assistance.

Edited by twoforjoy
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For me personally, no.

I have higher priorities for my money, and I feel able to advocate for myself if need be (and I have, successfully).

Homeschooling is legal in my state, and I know the law because I have read it for myself. I follow the law's requirements, and my children are being well educated.

It's a personal choice; different people will decide differently, based on their circumstances.

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I use Homeschool Legal Advantage. Same concept, but cheaper and tax deductible. Still decidedly and Christian organization, but they will represent families that homeschool regardless of what that family looks like. HSLDA is not tax deductible because they are very particular about what type of families they will represent, regardless that their rights to homeschool are being challenged.

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Nay for me. I don't like the fact that they use membership to fund other activities having nothing to do with homeschooling. I don't like the way they act as if they are the mouthpiece for all homeschoolers despite the fact that they represent only a small segment of the homeschooling population. But mostly, I disagree with their tactics when dealing with legislators. I don't like the backroom deals. I don't like the way they get between legislators and their constituents. I don't like the fact that they marginalize non-sectarian and secular groups who have just as much an interest in homeschooling issues as their Christian counterparts.

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I use Homeschool Legal Advantage. Same concept, but cheaper and tax deductible. Still decidedly and Christian organization, but they will represent families that homeschool regardless of what that family looks like. HSLDA is not tax deductible because they are very particular about what type of families they will represent, regardless that their rights to homeschool are being challenged.

 

It's my understanding that it's not just your family's religious beliefs, either, but also how you homeschool. You can have beliefs that align perfectly with the HSLDA's statement of faith, but unless you homeschool in the way they like (a very "school at home" type of thing), they won't represent you. You just aren't guaranteed legal representation by being a member; for any number of reasons, the HSLDA can and will decide not to represent a family.

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What type of activities?

 

Totally Clueless.

 

Do they have mission statement that's problematic?

 

Now, I'm curious

 

It is a political organization, it is on their own website

 

http://www.hslda.org/about/

 

I won't give money to a organization that uses my homeschooling money to fight gay marriage. If I give money to a homeschooling organization I want that money to be used to homeschooling issues for all beliefs.

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Nay for me. I don't like the fact that they use membership to fund other activities having nothing to do with homeschooling. I don't like the way they act as if they are the mouthpiece for all homeschoolers despite the fact that they represent only a small segment of the homeschooling population. But mostly, I disagree with their tactics when dealing with legislators. I don't like the backroom deals. I don't like the way they get between legislators and their constituents. I don't like the fact that they marginalize non-sectarian and secular groups who have just as much an interest in homeschooling issues as their Christian counterparts.

 

:iagree:

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Nope

 

I wholeheartedly disagree with their "mission." If they stuck to homeschooling issues it might be different but they do not so they won't get one cent from me.

 

if i wanted to support a tea party agenda, then i would. i don't.

 

Nay for me. I don't like the fact that they use membership to fund other activities having nothing to do with homeschooling. I don't like the way they act as if they are the mouthpiece for all homeschoolers despite the fact that they represent only a small segment of the homeschooling population. But mostly, I disagree with their tactics when dealing with legislators. I don't like the backroom deals. I don't like the way they get between legislators and their constituents. I don't like the fact that they marginalize non-sectarian and secular groups who have just as much an interest in homeschooling issues as their Christian counterparts.

 

politically, they are part of the problem, not part of the solution.

 

It is a political organization, it is on their own website

 

http://www.hslda.org/about/

 

I won't give money to a organization that uses my homeschooling money to fight gay marriage. If I give money to a homeschooling organization I want that money to be used to homeschooling issues for all beliefs.

 

yup.

 

so a definite "nay" here.

fwiw,

ann

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Yes, we belong, have belonged for years - it would have been cheaper for me to have a lifetime membership but I never have quite enough money to do that.

 

I have used them several times over the years . . .no lawsuits or anything big. We've had several questions come up over the years and had a school district requesting inappropriate information and I've always received prompt assistance.

 

Like anything else, do your research and make a decision based on the results.

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The agenda does bother me. But, honestly, I think the whole thing comes across as a shakedown protection racket. It is called extortion when the mob does it.

 

:iagree: Definite nay at this house.

 

We do have a local secular homeschool org we're members of that is a good resource for laws and paperwork in my state. I don't at all suspect we'll be approached for homeschooling, and if we do I have paperwork and test scores to pull out.

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I use Homeschool Legal Advantage. Same concept, but cheaper and tax deductible. Still decidedly and Christian organization, but they will represent families that homeschool regardless of what that family looks like. HSLDA is not tax deductible because they are very particular about what type of families they will represent, regardless that their rights to homeschool are being challenged.

 

:iagree:That is the organization I use as well.

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The agenda does bother me. But, honestly, I think the whole thing comes across as a shakedown protection racket. It is called extortion when the mob does it.

 

:iagree: Politics aside, they come across as if you can't understand the homeschool law for yourself, that they must interpret it for you. When we first started homeschooling it was pushed on us, as if it were something you had to do. Why? I understand the state law, I'm following it, and have documentation to prove it. We never joined and never felt the need.

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Nay for me. I don't like the fact that they use membership to fund other activities having nothing to do with homeschooling. I don't like the way they act as if they are the mouthpiece for all homeschoolers despite the fact that they represent only a small segment of the homeschooling population. But mostly, I disagree with their tactics when dealing with legislators. I don't like the backroom deals. I don't like the way they get between legislators and their constituents. I don't like the fact that they marginalize non-sectarian and secular groups who have just as much an interest in homeschooling issues as their Christian counterparts.

 

:iagree:

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No. Even if none of the above claims were true (and really I haven't bothered to investigate to see if they are), I don't feel it is necessary to pay for any kind of legal insurance. I am abiding by state law, and feel confident in my ability to demonstrate that my children are receiving a quality education should the matter come into question. In the highly unlikely event that I might require an attorney, I can afford one, and would rather choose one myself than have one assigned to me by a third party.

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Do homeschoolers who support gay lifestyles, are atheists, are liberals, or consider themselves secular homeschoolers (seem to) make up the largest segment of homeschoolers that oppose this organization?

 

Saying you don't need it - I "get" The extra stuff about "agenda" is what I'm trying to understand.

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Definitely not, for all the reasons already mentioned.

 

Here in NJ they actually were working for legislation that would make it HARDER to homeschool (we currently do nothing). They've also supported laws that would more narrowly define homeschooling.

 

I do fit your question of - supporter of gay marriage, liberal, agnostic and secular but mainly I wouldn't join because I don't feel the need, I think they misrepresent themselves and use scare tactics. They send out emails designed to raise fears that when they are investigated further, the whole situation is completely misrepresented. I'm not going to support that kind of "marketing".

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Do homeschoolers who support gay lifestyles, are atheists, are liberals, or consider themselves secular homeschoolers (seem to) make up the largest segment of homeschoolers that oppose this organization?

 

Not necessarily.

 

As I said, a lot of people do not approve of the paranoid shakedown vibe. As Dirty Ethel said, a lot of people do not approve of them hijacking the voice of homeschooling.

 

Saying you don't need it - I "get" The extra stuff about "agenda" is what I'm trying to understand.

 

Even some people who agree with them do not approve of them using homschooling as a front to push a particular political agenda in backroom lobbying deals.

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They've also supported laws that would more narrowly define homeschooling.

 

They have been instrumental in many states having separate Christian and secular exemptions. It gives the impression that they might want to end secular homeschooling in the future and argue from a freedom of religion perspective. I am a Christian, but I don't want my non-Christian friends to lose their right to homeschool.

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Do homeschoolers who support gay lifestyles, are atheists, are liberals, or consider themselves secular homeschoolers (seem to) make up the largest segment of homeschoolers that oppose this organization?

 

Saying you don't need it - I "get" The extra stuff about "agenda" is what I'm trying to understand.

 

I don't think so? To me it is more of a political group trying to be the "voice" of homeschooling when they clearly have an agenda outside of homeschooling AND that they discriminate about what sort of homeschooling they are willing to protect.

 

I am a Christian but even if they were not using homeschooling to oppose gay issues I would still have a problem with them not helping families who are not Christian. I believe if someone wants to be the "voice" for homeschooling that should be universal, not only the homeschoolers that fit within their approved perimeters. I dislike this growing trend of putting people in boxes

Edited by Sis
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Do homeschoolers who support gay lifestyles, are atheists, are liberals, or consider themselves secular homeschoolers (seem to) make up the largest segment of homeschoolers that oppose this organization?

 

Saying you don't need it - I "get" The extra stuff about "agenda" is what I'm trying to understand.

 

"Gay lifestyles?"

 

I don't even know what to say to that.

 

For what it's worth, I don't "oppose" the organization. I completely support their right to exist. I dislike their fear tactics, and I am appalled by their other-than-homeschooling agenda. But I don't want to shut them down. I simply exercise my right not to support them financially.

 

Oh, and that whole free speech thing, too, of course.

 

I suppose I identify as "liberal," but not secular (although I do use primarily non-religious curricula). I am not an athiest. I do whole-heartedly support marriage equality.

Edited by Jenny in Florida
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"Gay lifestyles?"

 

I don't even know what to say to that.

 

For what it's worth, I don't "oppose" the organization. I completely support their right to exist. I dislike their fear tactics, and I am appalled by their other-than-homeschooling agenda.

 

I suppose I identify as "liberal," but not secular (although I do use primarily non-religious curricula). I am not an athiest. I do whole-heartedly support marriage equality.

 

Ok...

 

um... "same sex couples"

 

what term would you prefer?

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