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IfIOnly
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We're joining a charter school next year. Still homeschooling (though technically part of the public school system), but we'll be given $600 per child for curricula, art, and P.E. (dance, karate, sports, etc.) I've really wanted to try IEW $$$, and was part of our decision. Ha! There's tutoring is available if needed too.

 

It's a fairly relaxed charter as far as teacher-parent (teacher-teacher?) conferences go. We'll meet once a month to show our work, but there's no grading of work or giving of semester grades until high school, just a certain percentage of our curricula needs to be accomplished each month. There are a few tests given throughout the school year though. I'm excited about the routine, accountability to get to science :), and additional help. I look forward to the comradery. I think it'll be good for us. Anyone else?

Edited by ifIonlyhadabrain
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We've been with a charter since we started homeschooling.  It has been wonderful -- they have been supportive of us not only financially but with our individual curriculum choices.  There is no way we could have afforded the amazing curricula we have used without the charter.  One thing though:  $600 seems quite low for a charter school homeschooling budget.  Up to this year, our budget has been $750 per child, and this year, it will be $1000 per child.  I know of other charters that have even higher budgets.  You may want to look around before you commit and talk to some other charter families in your area to get a feel for what is available.

Edited by amsunshinetemp
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Yes :)  Our charter is structured very similarly, except instead of a $ amount they will purchase specified curricula, and there are optional outsourced PE-type classes, and other classes provided at the school. I love it for all the reasons you mentioned, and for the social aspect for my kids. It is exactly the kind of thing I would have liked myself as a (home-schooled) kid.

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We've been with a charter since we started homeschooling.  It has been wonderful -- they have been supportive of us not only financially but with our individual curriculum choices.  There is no way we could have afforded the amazing curricula we have used without the charter.  One thing though:  $600 seems quite low for a charter school homeschooling budget.  Up to this year, our budget has been $750 per child, and this year, it will be $1000 per child.  I know of other charters that have even higher budgets.  You may want to look around before you commit and talk to some other charter families in your area to get a feel for what is available.

I've had a tough time tracking down chaters in our area, and most of the ones I found only had online curricula options. I barely made the cutoff for the one we went with which was only a few days after I decided to start looking too! I was the most relaxed with curricula choices, meetings, and offered the most financial aid. I will def. keep looking at options for next year though!

 

Yes :)  Our charter is structured very similarly, except instead of a $ amount they will purchase specified curricula, and there are optional outsourced PE-type classes, and other classes provided at the school. I love it for all the reasons you mentioned, and for the social aspect for my kids. It is exactly the kind of thing I would have liked myself as a (home-schooled) kid.

That's really neat they offer some classes! Besides occasional field trips, there's not much community for the children. There is a tutoring place that we can go to for help or if the kids just want a quiet place to work. There us a charter trying to get funding thus summer that will have a day of classes and really great curricula choices (you have to do their stuff). It was tempting to get on the waiting list but we'd have to meet weekly or biweekly, not have choices over curricula, I don't feel like having things up in the air until late summer.

 

  

I would love to have half that for our kids! We don't have any programs like that around. There are plenty of one day a week enrichment programs, but they don't give money for curriculum. Maybe we need to move...

Hopefully some more options open up in your area. Options are good.

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We started with a charter this past year (even after I said we would never do that.). We love it and are doing it next year. Our funds have gone up to 2200 per child. We use it for curriculum, supplies and activities, such as art classes, music lessons, P.E., etc. We do monthly meetings with a wonderful teacher (which was the reason I decided to go for it.). The testing is a pain, but I just tell my kids its part of the agreement. The curriculum library has been wonderful, saving me even more money. The school also has field trips, weekly, optional enrichment classe and events throughout the year. We do have semester grades though, but they are basically a rubric of whether they are meeting standards, not letter grades. It's been an awesome year!

 

Only downside is additional paperwork and less flexibility in school calendar, but still some. Definitely worth it for the price, but I don't know if I'd do it all just for 600. There's another charter in town that offers that, but they provide curriculum and on site enrichment outside of that. It's pretty popular, but it never seemed worth it to me as it is less flexible.

 

Edited to remove some information that could be used to identify me. For privacy reasons, I will not share the name of our charter publicly.

Edited by AdventuresinHomeschooling
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We're joining a charter school next year. Still homeschooling (though technically part of the public school system), but we'll be given $600 per child for curricula, art, and P.E. (dance, karate, sports, etc.) I've really wanted to try IEW $$$, and was part of our decision. Ha! There's tutoring is available if needed too.

 

It's a fairly relaxed charter as far as teacher-parent (teacher-teacher?) conferences go. We'll meet once a month to show our work, but there's no grading of work or giving of semester grades until high school, just a certain percentage of our curricula needs to be accomplished each month. There are a few tests given throughout the school year though. I'm excited about the routine, accountability to get to science :), and additional help. I look forward to the comradery. I think it'll be good for us. Anyone else?

We've been with our charter for 5 years. We meet once a month, and give our teacher one sample from each of the four core subjects, they have no idea how we use our curriculum or what percentage we use, etc., I could switch curriculum every month and no one would know or care.

 

I've heard that our funds are going up to $2,600 per child next year.

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We started with a charter this past year (even after I said we would never do that.). We love it and are doing it next year. Our funds have gone up to 2200 per child. We use it for curriculum, supplies and activities, such as art classes, music lessons, P.E., etc. One of my kids is doing horseback riding, which we could not afford. We do monthly meetings with a wonderful teacher (which was the reason I decided to go for it.). The testing is a pain, but I just tell my kids its part of the agreement. The curriculum library has been wonderful, saving me even more money. The school also has field trips, weekly, optional enrichment classe and events throughout the year. We do have semester grades though, but they are basically a rubric of whether they are meeting standards, not letter grades. It's been an awesome year!

 

Only downside is additional paperwork and less flexibility in school calendar, but still some. Definitely worth it for the price, but I don't know if I'd do it all just for 600. There's another charter in town that offers that, but they provide curriculum and on site enrichment outside of that. It's pretty popular, but it never seemed worth it to me as it is less flexible.

Oh, wow! I Would love to offer those opportunities to my children. I really think we live in a lower cost of living state and area than some of you. I've never heard anything near the learning opportunities and financial assistance here. Even though it's not that much, it still comes to over $200 a month that I'm saving our family and that can be put towards a family vacation, provide some educational stuff like a microscope, games, etc., or something else. There's not a whole lot I can do at home to bring income and we live pretty much paycheck to paycheck, so jumping through a few hoops to help our family a bit works for me.

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We've been with our charter for 5 years. We meet once a month, and give our teacher one sample from each of the four core subjects, they have no idea how we use our curriculum or what percentage we use, etc., I could switch curriculum every month and no one would know or care.

 

I've heard that our funds are going up to $2,600 per child next year.

That sound really wonderful. You don't live in Oregon do you? Ha!

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Oh, wow! I Would love to offer those opportunities to my children. I really think we live in a lower cost of living state and area than some of you. I've never heard anything near the learning opportunities and financial assistance here. Even though it's not that much, it still comes to over $200 a month that I'm saving our family and that can be put towards a family vacation, provide some educational stuff like a microscope, games, etc., or something else. There's not a whole lot I can do at home to bring income and we live pretty much paycheck to paycheck, so jumping through a few hoops to help our family a bit works for me.

I actually had assumed that you were in CA because I didn't know there were other states with charter schools that offered funds.
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I actually had assumed that you were in CA because I didn't know there were other states with charter schools that offered funds.

I hear some amazing things about CA's charter schools. There are more and more charter schools popping up in our area though, so I'm hopeful there will be greater opportunities as time goes by.

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We are enrolled with a similar program, although we get a much higher allotment and can take many on-site classes. We send in work samples each quarter along with grades, and they have a bit of testing. My younger one had to do a 10-minute assessment each quarter for math and reading, and my older one has yearly state testing. If a kid is not proficient then they require more assessments and can restrict how we spend the allotment, but my kids have been fine so we have a ton of freedom. It has been all good! There aren't any secular coops around here so this is a huge help as far as lining up enrichment classes.

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Do you all mind sharing the names of these online charter schools? I'm curious because I expected to hear a discussion of actual blocks-and-mortar charter schools, not essentially a system of public funding for homeschooling curriculum.

.

 

I don't think anyone said they were online? My school is has a large physical building with a principal, a couple dozen advisory teachers, a library, and an auditorioum. You can take some classes there, use homeschool materials to teach at home, or have your kid go through Calvert, or take online classes from various vendors. It's not a cover school.

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In CA. We are returning to Visions in Education this year. We have been with them for 3 years, but decided to PS last year and are running back to be part of visions again. We love them but it truly depends on who the CT or credential teacher is. We legt because we got a new teacher who was horribke about the work sanples and ny dyslexic son. It was a blessing to go to the public school because we got a workable IEP through them . We get $1,800 for the year to use on curriculum and extracurriculars. I love that they offer on-site enrichment classes and I use them a lot.

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Is California the only state with these types of charters? It would be awesome if there were other states.

I wish I knew too. We're in OR, and charter schools are increasing in numbers in our area but are nowhere near the quantity and quality of CA's.

Edited by ifIonlyhadabrain
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We are not part of an online charter.  For privacy reasons, I will not identify the specific school, but we are in California.  Our charter has physical facilities, including a library for both reading materials and curriculum, and various sites where enrichment classes are taught and available for any families who opt to take them.  My dds take Spanish language classes at our charter.  All other classes are taught by me, at home.

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We love our charter school (in California). My kids get to go to a weekly class and they have a lot of electives to choose from. It is located in a wing of a local elementary school so our kids have access to the library, computer lab, and playing fields when they are there. We also have a lot of field trips planned each quarter. Plenty of opportunities for socialization.

 

As far as extra time commitments, our kids have to be assessed at the beginning and end of each year for reading and math levels. I have to turn in goals for each semester (I just type up the lesson topics from the table of contents of my major curriculum). We have three days of Common Core testing, that we could opt out of, but I send my son for the experience. (He likes tests anyway.) Every month we have to turn in a summary of what we covered in each subject area, 3 work samples, and a PE log (CA law requires that.) We also have to meet with a mentor teacher once a month, but it ends up being only about four or five meetings because unless there is a real need, we don't meet during months where there are assessments, or a major break, like Christmas.

 

FWW Our stipend was lower when the school was new, but now that our school is more established and other competing charters are in the area, our stipend has doubled. $600 per kid will go a long way towards offsetting the cost of homeschooling and it will probably go up in time.

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I'm in Ca and my oldest child will be starting this year in TK. The charter I'm most heavily leaning towards has a physical location with a science lab, $2600 per year per student, and a resource library with an online catalog. The two main downsides (and the reasons I'm still considering a competitor) is that only 25% of the funds can be used towards PE and they are requiring an assessment before paying for my curricula choices that are several grade levels ahead of my son's age grade.

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.

 

I don't think anyone said they were online? My school is has a large physical building with a principal, a couple dozen advisory teachers, a library, and an auditorioum. You can take some classes there, use homeschool materials to teach at home, or have your kid go through Calvert, or take online classes from various vendors. It's not a cover school.

I haven't heard the term cover school before. What's that?

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I haven't heard the term cover school before. What's that?

 

A cover school is a public or private school that you enroll with so as not to be subject to the homechool laws in your state (turning in attendance, portfolios, standardized testing, etc.). Most let you pick curriculum and operate independently, but legally-speaking, your child is not a homeschooled student. I don't know of any that give allotments, but maybe there are some.

 

To the 1-poster who asked the question: the publicly funded programs are sort of a hybrid - the kids are subject to the laws of public schooled students (although in my state none of us have to turn in attendance), we have to over the core subjects, and we have to show progress via tests and work samples. The parent has the ultimate say in which materials are used and how it is done. The advisory teachers step in if the parent asks for help or the child is not doing enough work. The allotment to the parents is basically the money the school would have spent on curriculum if it was a traditional brick & mortar school, but the supplementary classes and tutors gives those options as well. 

 

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A cover school is a public or private school that you enroll with so as not to be subject to the homechool laws in your state (turning in attendance, portfolios, standardized testing, etc.). Most let you pick curriculum and operate independently, but legally-speaking, your child is not a homeschooled student. I don't know of any that give allotments, but maybe there are some.

 

To the 1-poster who asked the question: the publicly funded programs are sort of a hybrid - the kids are subject to the laws of public schooled students (although in my state none of us have to turn in attendance), we have to over the core subjects, and we have to show progress via tests and work samples. The parent has the ultimate say in which materials are used and how it is done. The advisory teachers step in if the parent asks for help or the child is not doing enough work. The allotment to the parents is basically the money the school would have spent on curriculum if it was a traditional brick & mortar school, but the supplementary classes and tutors gives those options as well.

 

Oh, thanks! We still have to do the testing required for homeschoolers in our state and then some. ;)
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A cover school is a public or private school that you enroll with so as not to be subject to the homechool laws in your state (turning in attendance, portfolios, standardized testing, etc.). Most let you pick curriculum and operate independently, but legally-speaking, your child is not a homeschooled student. I don't know of any that give allotments, but maybe there are some.

 

To the 1-poster who asked the question: the publicly funded programs are sort of a hybrid - the kids are subject to the laws of public schooled students (although in my state none of us have to turn in attendance), we have to over the core subjects, and we have to show progress via tests and work samples. The parent has the ultimate say in which materials are used and how it is done. The advisory teachers step in if the parent asks for help or the child is not doing enough work. The allotment to the parents is basically the money the school would have spent on curriculum if it was a traditional brick & mortar school, but the supplementary classes and tutors gives those options as well.

 

I don't know what the amount us in other states, but the allotment per student is much higher than we get to spend to cover salaries, overhead and other school resources.

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Does anyone at a CA charter use Inspire? They are expanding to our area next year, and with $2600 per child, I am seriously considering joining, though I've never liked the idea before. 

 

If you use Inspire can you please share your thoughts?

Edited by indigomama
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Is California the only state with these types of charters? It would be awesome if there were other states.

 

 

 

 

Online charter school where you get funds for the kids.

 

They get a laptop and ipad which are not included in the $ amount they give you per kid

 

Grades K4 and K: $750

Grades 1-6: $1,250

Grades 7-8: $2,000

Grades 9-12: $2,250

Edited by mommyoffive
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We have used a charter from the beginning and it's been great for us. I get $1500 per kid which I can use on curriculum (I can choose basically what ever I want--I have never in 4 years asked for something and been unable to purchase it) extra curricular activities (art classes, tennis lessons, gymnastics, swimming, etc), annual passes to local museums and national parks, and online subscriptions (brain pop, IXL, ALEKS, RazKids, etc are some of the options).

 

It has allowed me to base curriculum decisions on what will work best for us rather than budget. It's also allowed us to have an awesome stock of art supplies available to us at home. My kids get to do a ton of extracurricular activities that we wouldn't otherwise be able to afford and have made some wonderful friends at those activities. It's also allowed us to try some of the online subscriptions that I would never have been able to afford on my own. Basically it just lets me make choices for my kids education with out money really entering into the equation, which is nice.

 

In exchange for this allotment the kids have to do two classes a month with their "teacher". We are on an island an our charter school is located on a different island so the classes are via web cam. The quality really depends on he teacher. Sometimes they get a lot out of it, sometimes not so much. Some teachers give a homework assignment at the end and some don't.

 

My son, who completed third grade this year, also had to do the required state testing this year. I stressed over it a ton and in the end it was no big deal. It was 4 total days spread over 2 weeks, only about an hour to an hour and a half a day. He didn't love it, but he didn't dead going or anything either.

 

To me the couple hoops we have to jump through pale in comparison to the benefits.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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We're joining a charter school next year. Still homeschooling (though technically part of the public school system), but we'll be given $600 per child for curricula, art, and P.E. (dance, karate, sports, etc.) I've really wanted to try IEW $$$, and was part of our decision. Ha! There's tutoring is available if needed too.

 

It's a fairly relaxed charter as far as teacher-parent (teacher-teacher?) conferences go. We'll meet once a month to show our work, but there's no grading of work or giving of semester grades until high school, just a certain percentage of our curricula needs to be accomplished each month. There are a few tests given throughout the school year though. I'm excited about the routine, accountability to get to science :), and additional help. I look forward to the comradery. I think it'll be good for us. Anyone else?

 

The easy going charter around my neck of the woods gives students 2400 per year and they can use it on dance lessons, music lessons, gymnastics lessons, horse lesssons- anything they want. For them, going thorugh the 3 standardized tests, and the monthly meetings is worth it.  They basically get cheap affordable curricula, they can get used curricula, use the library, and even use the Charter Schools Loan Library (they have tons and tons of  books) and they use almost ALL the money for fun lessons.  The charter does not cover an actual sports TEAM, only LESSONS, but especially when you have 3 or 4 kids, that really adds up.  

 

For 600, IMO it would not be worth it unless you are really struggling.  

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We are joining a charter in MN this year that will give us $800 per child for curriculum and supplies, as well as extra-curricular activities. It's not as much as other states, but it's more than we've ever had and the financial help (x3 kids) will be nice. 

 

We have to turn in worksheets every 2 weeks that cover the state standards in math, LA, science and history. I've been told that they're not too onerous, so hopefully it'll be worth the money to us. 

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Does anyone at a CA charter use Inspire? They are expanding to our area next year, and with $2600 per child, I am seriously considering joining, though I've never liked the idea before. 

 

If you use Inspire can you please share your thoughts?

 

You could try asking for more information here:

 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1701738830074393/

 

And here:

 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/964284686950034/

 

We don't homeschool with Inspire, but they are very popular in our area because of the $$$.

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I have 1 child with Inspire Choice Plus. It's been a rocky year, we started with Summit, but that was a mess and Summit fell apart and was absorbed by Inspire (who was Summits parent school). They created the Choice Plus program to take all the Summit kids. We had some issues with vendors being paid on time, and curriculum orders taking a long time to come. That said, Inspire had a huge enrollment, over 800 kids in one month I was told. So, I understand the issues they were having. I think it will be worked out by Sept for sure. My ES is great, my daughter loves her. The extra $ is huge, it paid for my daughters entire school year of ballet.

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We're going to try one out this year for the first time. I really hope it goes good. My kids get to take 4 fun elective classes on one day of the week and we get $1500 for each kid to buy curriculum and supplies we need. We're really looking forward to the fun classes they chose.

Edited by bttrflyvld
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We're going to try one out this year for the first time. I really hope it goes good. My kids get to take 4 fun elective classes on one day of the week and we get $1500 for each kid to buy curriculum and supplies we need. We're really looking forward to the fun classes they chose.

 

That sounds perfect.   Good luck.

 

I think we are going to try one this year too.  Although only 1 of my kids got in out of the 3 that are school age.   Note to self you need to apply really early I guess.

 

Going back reading about some of yours, I wish this one had the classes one day a week or so.  That would be perfect.  I also wish this one gave more $.  That would make it more clear cut.

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Has anyone had a bad experience or feel it wasn't worth it?

 

Are you free to go back to homeschooling on your own at any time?

Yes, you are free to file a PSA and homeschool on your own at any time. I was thinking of doing that next year for my ninth grader, but my overhead teacher was so awesome at helping me get my curriculum I wanted approved for high school. I decided to stay for high school.

 

It is totally worth it for me. It is not worth it for others. It all depends on your goals in life and what bothers you or matters to you.

Everyone is different :)

Edited by Peacefulisle
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Has anyone had a bad experience or feel it wasn't worth it?

 

Are you free to go back to homeschooling on your own at any time?

Here you can quit anytime, but you must pay back the money. The prorate it, so if you've completed half the year/curricula, you would owe half the funds allotted.

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Does anyone at a CA charter use Inspire? They are expanding to our area next year, and with $2600 per child, I am seriously considering joining, though I've never liked the idea before. 

 

If you use Inspire can you please share your thoughts?

 

I believe Inspire is new and I've heard some iffy things. We started with Sutter Peak last year and I have been *very* happy with them. Their funds are almost as good as Inspire's at $2500 per child (elementary) and this year they are offering free laptops in addition. They only require 1 work sample per school year. My favorite feature is reimbursement. No vouchers required, I can buy anything from anywhere, or pay anyone for lessons, and as long as it is academic-related, they will cover it. In response to parent requests, they also did away with limits on how we have to spend our funds. So, for example, I can spend it all on piano lessons if I want to. 

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I believe Inspire is new and I've heard some iffy things. We started with Sutter Peak last year and I have been *very* happy with them. Their funds are almost as good as Inspire's at $2500 per child (elementary) and this year they are offering free laptops in addition. They only require 1 work sample per school year. My favorite feature is reimbursement. No vouchers required, I can buy anything from anywhere, or pay anyone for lessons, and as long as it is academic-related, they will cover it. In response to parent requests, they also did away with limits on how we have to spend our funds. So, for example, I can spend it all on piano lessons if I want to. 

 

That reimbursement and fund dispersement sounds awesome, unfortunately they don't service our county. We're going to try Inspire and see how it goes. They've said there are no problems to withdrawing at any time if things don't work out. 

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In ours if you quit before December 31 you have to repay all the allotment money you have spent. After that you just have to return your non consumable books and materials you bought with the allotment or borrowed from the resource room.

 

 

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And now i am thinking I do not want to do it.  UGH.  I am the most indecisive person ever.  I say yes one day.  The funds would be awesome.  But then I go back the other way and think I don't want to give up my freedom.  

We haven't ever done it, I never even knew this existed.  

 

I don't know.  We travel a lot.  Sometimes we are gone 2-3 weeks out of the month.  Only usually 1-3 months a year.  

 

But I like to just have the freedom to do that, and to not ask anyone permission about it.  We always just school all year so if we take a 2 week break in May or Sept it isn't a big deal.

 

ARGH

 

2 days ago i was convinced i was doing it.   

 

Honestly the only reason I want to is because of the money.  Is that bad?  Do you have other reasons for doing it? 

 

I have to decide by morning.  

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