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Anyone in or near Charlotte NC?


SebastianCat
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We are looking at a possible relocation for DH's job to Charlotte, NC.   It's nowhere near certain right now, but I realized after thinking about it a few days that I've never actually even visited Charlotte except for flying through the airport.    Obviously, we'd have a LOT of research and exploring to do before we'd decide to move.    For anyone who lives there or nearby, can you give me recommendations for the best areas of town to live?   (DH's potential job would be in or near the Uptown area, but that's all I know right now.)

 

What is homeschooling high school like in NC?  (I've read the official homeschool requirements, and following the regulations shouldn't be a problem.)   Can high school-aged homeschool students participate in sports with local schools?   Enroll part time in public schools?  Dual enroll for college classes?    Are there class providers or co-ops that offer high school science, math, or writing classes?   Would a public high school accept a full-time student transferring homeschooled credits?

 

Is living across the border in SC a better option for homeschooling (specifically high school, participating in public school athletics, taking outsourced classes, etc.)?   Is the commute time from SC to Uptown Charlotte horrible?

 

Are there state-sponsored (in FL it's lottery funded) college scholarship programs in NC or SC?   Are students who were home schooled through high school eligible?

 

Why I ask:    My DS is currently in 9th grade, taking one online class through the Florida Virtual school and two outsourced classes through co-ops.   He runs cross country and track with our local public high school, and we are considering part-time enrollment in the public school here for next year, if we don't move.   Here in Florida, home schooled students are eligible (with year-by-year updates) for the lottery-funded Bright Futures college scholarship, but they must have qualifying test scores and documented community service hours, which we've already begun to accumulate.

 

Thank you!

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We are looking at a possible relocation for DH's job to Charlotte, NC.   It's nowhere near certain right now, but I realized after thinking about it a few days that I've never actually even visited Charlotte except for flying through the airport.    Obviously, we'd have a LOT of research and exploring to do before we'd decide to move.    For anyone who lives there or nearby, can you give me recommendations for the best areas of town to live?   (DH's potential job would be in or near the Uptown area, but that's all I know right now.)

 

What is homeschooling high school like in NC?

 

VERY EASY and there are lots of HSers

 

 (I've read the official homeschool requirements, and following the regulations shouldn't be a problem.)   Can high school-aged homeschool students participate in sports with local schools?  

 

So far, they have left it up to ind. schools and it hasn't gone really well.  Most HSers do not play for the PSs.  There are some private schools that have allowed HSers to play but then the parents paying tuition often got upset, so it is very limited.

 

Enroll part time in public schools?

 

 No

 

 Dual enroll for college classes?  

 

Yes, this is not a problem at all.  You do have to pay fees and books, but no tuition.

 

 Are there class providers or co-ops that offer high school science, math, or writing classes?   Yes, many different places and opportunities.

 

Would a public high school accept a full-time student transferring homeschooled credits?  Yes, without a problem, if the transcript is written correctly.

 

Is living across the border in SC a better option for homeschooling (specifically high school, participating in public school athletics, taking outsourced classes, etc.)?

 

Depends on your needs.

 

  Is the commute time from SC to Uptown Charlotte horrible?

 

Depends on the time of day, but it isn't traffic free for sure.

 

Are there state-sponsored (in FL it's lottery funded) college scholarship programs in NC or SC?   Are students who were home schooled through high school eligible?

 

SC has more of those programs but their tuition is higher, so I am not sure that it is a great savings over living in NC and I prefer NC colleges for my kids.

 

Why I ask:    My DS is currently in 9th grade, taking one online class through the Florida Virtual school and two outsourced classes through co-ops.   He runs cross country and track with our local public high school, and we are considering part-time enrollment in the public school here for next year, if we don't move.   Here in Florida, home schooled students are eligible (with year-by-year updates) for the lottery-funded Bright Futures college scholarship, but they must have qualifying test scores and documented community service hours, which we've already begun to accumulate.

 

Thank you!

 

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We live in Charlotte!  We moved here in 1990 so we consider this home! :)

 

I agree with Dawn's assessment. 

 

For dual enrollment the strict guideline is based on grade level.  Julie Grahl is the contact person for CPCC.  I've talked with her in person a few times.  The student must be a junior, at least.  No younger than a junior.  It's supposed to be a 2 year "free" program for h'schoolers, but there is a little wiggle room if your child needs to take another semester or two. 

 

Traffic grows increasingly more congested everyday.  Many people have staggered work schedules to help with their commute to work in the am and home in the pm. 

Edited by sheryl
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We are looking at a possible relocation for DH's job to Charlotte, NC. It's nowhere near certain right now, but I realized after thinking about it a few days that I've never actually even visited Charlotte except for flying through the airport. Obviously, we'd have a LOT of research and exploring to do before we'd decide to move. For anyone who lives there or nearby, can you give me recommendations for the best areas of town to live? (DH's potential job would be in or near the Uptown area, but that's all I know right now.)

 

What is homeschooling high school like in NC? (I've read the official homeschool requirements, and following the regulations shouldn't be a problem.) Can high school-aged homeschool students participate in sports with local schools? Enroll part time in public schools? Dual enroll for college classes? Are there class providers or co-ops that offer high school science, math, or writing classes? Would a public high school accept a full-time student transferring homeschooled credits?

 

Is living across the border in SC a better option for homeschooling (specifically high school, participating in public school athletics, taking outsourced classes, etc.)? Is the commute time from SC to Uptown Charlotte horrible?

 

Are there state-sponsored (in FL it's lottery funded) college scholarship programs in NC or SC? Are students who were home schooled through high school eligible?

 

Why I ask: My DS is currently in 9th grade, taking one online class through the Florida Virtual school and two outsourced classes through co-ops. He runs cross country and track with our local public high school, and we are considering part-time enrollment in the public school here for next year, if we don't move. Here in Florida, home schooled students are eligible (with year-by-year updates) for the lottery-funded Bright Futures college scholarship, but they must have qualifying test scores and documented community service hours, which we've already begun to accumulate.

 

Thank you!

I don't know anything about homeschooling there, but I had to post because I giggle every time I hear/see someone say "Uptown Charlotte". When I first moved to Charlotte many moons ago, there was a big push to get everyone to stop calling it "downtown" and start calling it "uptown". This was because the downtown area had a bad reputation and they were trying to revitalize the area. They thought getting people to call it "Uptown" sounded more positive and appealing. At the time, no or few natives would make the switch. I guess they've succeeeded in making the switch!

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If state colleges are possibly in your kids' future then I'd keep that in mind. USC is a good school but on the whole IMO NC public universities are much better than those in SC.

I think she meant- Clemson is a great school and USC is decent.

😂😂😂😂😂

 

Seriously- live in NC. The traffic is awful around Charlotte, and your kids will have an easier time getting in Chapel Hill.

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I think she meant- Clemson is a great school and USC is decent.

😂😂😂😂😂

 

Seriously- live in NC. The traffic is awful around Charlotte, and your kids will have an easier time getting in Chapel Hill.

 

Acck! How could I forget Clemson???

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We live in Charlotte!  We moved here in 1990 so we consider this home! :)

 

I agree with Dawn's assessment. 

 

For dual enrollment the strict guideline is based on grade level.  Julie Grahl is the contact person for CPCC.  I've talked with her in person a few times.  The student must be a junior, at least.  No younger than a junior.  It's supposed to be a 2 year "free" program for h'schoolers, but there is a little wiggle room if your child needs to take another semester or two. 

 

Traffic grows increasingly more congested everyday.  Many people have staggered work schedules to help with their commute to work in the am and home in the pm. 

 

Julie left.  It is now someone named Ashley Robinson.

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1) For anyone who lives there or nearby, can you give me recommendations for the best areas of town to live? (DH's potential job would be in or near the Uptown area, but that's all I know right now.)

 

Luckily, all public transportation leads uptown. There is currently one light rail line (Lynx) that heads south and one that will head north up to UNC Charlotte (UNCC) is slated to open this summer. Much will depend on how much you want to spend on a house and your tolerance for traffic. Taxes are lower outside of Mecklenburg, but services are going to differ. If Google Fiber high speed internet is important to you, inside Mecklenburg would be the better bet. https://fiber.google.com/cities/charlotte/?feeditemid=&targetid=kwd-108219842417&loc_physical_ms=9009916&loc_interest_ms=1021048&adpos=1t1&matchtype=b&network=g&device=c&channel=paidsearch&gclid=CLCKvMvc9dECFYw7gQodlvYL8g&gclsrc=aw.ds

 

Mecklenburg has by far the best library system, but you can get an out of county borrower card for $45 a year.

2)  What is homeschooling high school like in NC? Can high school-aged homeschool students participate in sports with local schools?

 

We haven't found it problematic. As to sports, if there's any with the public schools I haven't heard of it, but we are not big sports people and I haven't looked for it. Until very recently there was an absolute wall of separation between public schools and non-public education (private and homeschools). There was a rules change and that is slowly changing. As was said earlier, some private schools might. I think there's a homeschool football team?

 

3)  Enroll part time in public schools?

 

It depends on where you are. In Cabarrus County, northeast of Charlotte, we participated in the HomeReach high school program for online courses through the schools when my daughter was in 9th/10th grade (they go all the way through high school). http://www.cabarrus.k12.nc.us/homereach  This allows the student to remain a homeschooler. They used APEX Learning, and it was fine for regular and honors, but they don't really have an AP option. The staff was very helpful and supportive. Most of the labs are virtual, with only a couple live lab options, so may not be enough if your kid is headed in a science direction (mine isn't and it was fine, but I am having her do a live lab class in dual enrollment for her third science just to cover all bases).

 

Mecklenburg has, I believe, just started an online option aimed at homeschoolers. NC has two new virtual charters, but they are full-on public schools, no part-time option.

 

3) Dual enroll for college classes?

 

Yes, it's called the Career and College Promise Program. Students must be a junior/senior in all but a tiny fraction of offerings. Summer is included, and a rising junior can register for the summer session if he has completed 10th grade before summer session begins. The student has to meet benchmarks on the ACT/SAT/PSAT or the college's Accuplacer test to enroll and should have completed algebra II. There is some leeway to admit a student without algebra II or who doesn't quite hit the benchmark scores, but the options for available classes are limited and continued enrollment depends on grades in those entry classes.

 

Tuition is waived, but fees and books are not, though some schools do waive fees (South Piedmont Community College in Union County just east of Mecklenburg does), which can save a good bit. For us, fees and books are running in the neighborhood of $500 a semester with close to half of that in fees. In the area, Central Piedmont Community College is the big player, but you can use any of the community colleges. There are three college transfer pathways (arts, science, engineering) that are common to all of the colleges, and multiple career prep pathways, which vary by college. Students can take one college transfer pathway or one college transfer and one career pathway or two career pathways at the same time. There is an articulation agreement with the NC public colleges (and many private ones but not all) to accept the specific classes on the transfer pathways as fulfilling general education requirements, not just as electives, which is nice. My daughter is in her second semester of dual enrollment at CPCC.

 

The community colleges in the area:

Central Piedmont (CPCC) in Charlotte/Mecklenburg https://www.cpcc.edu/hsprograms

Rowan Cabarrus (RCCC) just north and northeast of Charlotte   https://www.rccc.edu/highschool/

South Piedmont (SPCC) in Union, just east of Charlotte http://www.spcc.edu/opportunities-for-high-school-students/

Gaston (GCC) just west of Charlotte http://www.gaston.edu/career-college-promise/

Mitchell (MCC) just north of the upper tip of Mecklenburg in Iredell County http://www.mitchellcc.edu/earn-college-credit-high-school

 

 

4)  Are there class providers or co-ops that offer high school science, math, or writing classes?

 

It depends on what you are looking for. You will have the best luck if you are looking for very religion-specific classes. AFAIK, all the co-ops that offer anything related to high school science use Apologia, for instance. The majority of homeschoolers of high school age that I know use the dual enrollment program for 11th and 12th, especially the secular ones. I believe some of the private Christian schools may have the option of high school classes as well.

 

5) Would a public high school accept a full-time student transferring homeschooled credits?

 

It would depend on the school. I don't have any experience with this.

6)  Is living across the border in SC a better option for homeschooling (specifically high school, participating in public school athletics, taking outsourced classes, etc.)? Is the commute time from SC to Uptown Charlotte horrible?

 

No experience in this area, I'm afraid.

7) Are there state-sponsored (in FL it's lottery funded) college scholarship programs in NC or SC? Are students who were home schooled through high school eligible?

 

Don't know about SC, but NC only has some need-based, there's bupkis for merit.
 

Good luck!

Edited by KarenNC
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Ashley left, too. It's now Kimber Morton.

 

 

Oh my.  Ashley was only there a few months!

 

My son was dual enrollment until this past Dec. and dealt with Ashley.  Up until last July it was Julie.  Wow.

 

My son is now a full fledged college student (no dual enrollment) as of January, 2017.  He is at the Central campus because they are the only ones who have his program.

 

MANY of his friends are at the Levine campus, which is a great campus, small, beautiful building, etc....the Central Campus is larger, multiple buildings, in Uptown, and looks more like a "college" campus to me.

 

OP, My middle son went to 10th grade in a PS after HSing through 9th grade.  I just made a transcript for him with his classes listed,  his grade received, his accumulated credits, etc....and he had no problem going in to 10th grade.  

 

 

Edited by DawnM
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Oh my.  Ashley was only there a few months!

 

My son was dual enrollment until this past Dec. and dealt with Ashley.  Up until last July it was Julie.  Wow.

 

My son is now a full fledged college student (no dual enrollment) as of January, 2017.  He is at the Central campus because they are the only ones who have his program.

 

MANY of his friends are at the Levine campus, which is a great campus, small, beautiful building, etc....the Central Campus is larger, multiple buildings, in Uptown, and looks more like a "college" campus to me.

 

OP, My middle son went to 10th grade in a PS after HSing through 9th grade.  I just made a transcript for him with his classes listed,  his grade received, his accumulated credits, etc....and he had no problem going in to 10th grade.  

 

I believe this is the 4th person in the position since the program started (it replaced the previous dual enrollment option in about 2012, as I remember). I haven't met Kimber but she has been quickly responsive to the one question I've had to email about. At any of the schools, I would strongly suggest to parents to do your research to understand the options, both possibilities and limits, of the program and be prepared to handle the guidance part primarily on your own. 

 

I have been quite impressed with what I've seen of Jeff Jost, the guy at SPCC in Union County, and their main campus is closer to Mecklenburg than one would think. He seems very involved with his students and I was impressed enough (and tempted enough by the fee waiver) to seriously weigh the option of driving past two of the CPCC campuses to take my daughter there, but it was just too far for anything on a regular basis, particularly in the winter. We may consider them for any online classes, though. That campus actually looks like two large warehouses out in the middle of nowhere. I briefly looked at RCCC, which is closer than SPCC for us, but farther than the CPCC Cato campus, but they don't offer ASL there.

 

Levine is very pretty but far for us, though she'll have to hit it next year for some classes not offered at Cato campus where she is now. She's enjoying Cato, which is very intimate (only four buildings) and close to home. We are trying to avoid Central downtown because I absolutely despise driving downtown. Cato and Levine campuses look more like a traditional campus to me, while Central is very much an urban campus in the middle of a large city with tons of concrete and very little green space, rather than set apart. This may be influenced because I went to college in a more "set-apart" type of campus. :) I haven't seen the other two CPCC campuses. She hasn't tried any of the online class options as she is really enjoying the classroom interaction. 

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In fall 2018, unless things change, three of the NC public universities are going to have in-state tuition capped at $500 a semester (doesn't include fees, books, room, and board)--Western NC, UNC Pembroke, and Elizabeth City State University. http://www.northcarolina.edu/news/2016/09/Western-Carolina-University-Prepares-New-Tuition-Plan  The goal was to have all residents within 150 miles of one of the cheap universities. These aren't the higher-rated schools in the system (Western is probably the highest of the three), but it will make college more affordable.

 

The article goes on to say, "Beyond the NC Promise plan, the budget legislation also requires fixed tuition rates (for eight consecutive semesters) for incoming freshmen and new transfer students on all UNC campuses. It also limits future increases in student fees to 3 percent per year; and creates a merit-based scholarship program for students at two historically black UNC institutions – NC A&T State University and NC Central University."

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That's incredible.  That doesn't seem right for there to be so many incumbents in a short amount of time.

 

Hmmm.  Wonder what the backstory is.

 

And yes, the Levine campus is more palatable over the downtown location. 

 

Nobody seems to dislike any of the coordinators or feel they've done a particularly bad job. Ashley was responsive and sympathetic though not able to do much when we had some issues with registering for a particular class for this semester, and Kimber answered a question quickly this week. The only interaction we had with Julie was our info presentation.

 

IMO, it's probably because it's more work than a part-time position should have, which is why I say go in prepared to be the advisor/guidance counselor yourself. In our info presentation prior to enrollment, Julie made it very, very plain that her goal was to have families do it all of it--registration, course selection, compliance, etc---as much all by themselves as possible. The primary survey question at the end of the presentation was actually (to paraphrase because I don't remember the exact wording), "Now that you've seen the presentation on the website I've built, do you think you could do it all by yourself?" It's been our experience this year that minimal interaction with the student is the expectation. The most we've gotten without specifically asking is a reminder of the deadlines to submit paperwork and a reminder that if you register courses off your pathway you will be automatically dropped from them---no requirement to have any meeting, sign-off, or contact with an advisor. 

 

The stark difference in the information presentations and apparent interest in active involvement with the students in this area was the primary reason I was strongly tempted to go with SPCC even though it is much farther away. To be fair, the CPCC program is huge compared to the one at SPCC.

 

 

The position covers (or did when Julie presented) dual enrollment for everyone, including the public schools, but the advising for that is pushed off onto the high school counselors, while the dual enrollment coordinator is supposed to advise homeschoolers.

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In fall 2018, unless things change, three of the NC public universities are going to have in-state tuition capped at $500 a semester (doesn't include fees, books, room, and board)--Western NC, UNC Pembroke, and Elizabeth City State University. http://www.northcarolina.edu/news/2016/09/Western-Carolina-University-Prepares-New-Tuition-Plan  The goal was to have all residents within 150 miles of one of the cheap universities. These aren't the higher-rated schools in the system (Western is probably the highest of the three), but it will make college more affordable.

 

The article goes on to say, "Beyond the NC Promise plan, the budget legislation also requires fixed tuition rates (for eight consecutive semesters) for incoming freshmen and new transfer students on all UNC campuses. It also limits future increases in student fees to 3 percent per year; and creates a merit-based scholarship program for students at two historically black UNC institutions – NC A&T State University and NC Central University."

 

 

Interesting.  I did not know this.  

 

I am HOPING to get back to a counseling position in a PS soon.  I am currently in the classroom.  The last time I was a counselor was in CA and I am very well versed in CA public universities!  But I am still learning all of the NC system info.

 

I am taking my older boys to look at UNCC and UNCSA over Spring break.  UNCC can be commutable, so we will def. check it out.  However, UNCSA would be a great match for both of their needs, but harder to get into.

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Thanks for the info - I've found the same types of things to be true in Florida.   There are so many intricacies to homeschooling high school, dual enrolling, and knowing all of the options, that it's intimidating to think about moving to a new state and learning all over again.   But it sounds as though NC has everything we'd have here, with the exception of playing sports for the local PS.

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Nobody seems to dislike any of the coordinators or feel they've done a particularly bad job. Ashley was responsive and sympathetic though not able to do much when we had some issues with registering for a particular class for this semester, and Kimber answered a question quickly this week. The only interaction we had with Julie was our info presentation.

 

IMO, it's probably because it's more work than a part-time position should have, which is why I say go in prepared to be the advisor/guidance counselor yourself. In our info presentation prior to enrollment, Julie made it very, very plain that her goal was to have families do it all of it--registration, course selection, compliance, etc---as much all by themselves as possible. The primary survey question at the end of the presentation was actually (to paraphrase because I don't remember the exact wording), "Now that you've seen the presentation on the website I've built, do you think you could do it all by yourself?" It's been our experience this year that minimal interaction with the student is the expectation. The most we've gotten without specifically asking is a reminder of the deadlines to submit paperwork and a reminder that if you register courses off your pathway you will be automatically dropped from them---no requirement to have any meeting, sign-off, or contact with an advisor. 

 

The stark difference in the information presentations and apparent interest in active involvement with the students in this area was the primary reason I was strongly tempted to go with SPCC even though it is much farther away. To be fair, the CPCC program is huge compared to the one at SPCC.

 

 

The position covers (or did when Julie presented) dual enrollment for everyone, including the public schools, but the advising for that is pushed off onto the high school counselors, while the dual enrollment coordinator is supposed to advise homeschoolers.

Well, I assumed we did not have a choice.   Mecklenburg residents/CPCC and SPCC/non-Mecklenburg residents.  So, a Mecklenburg student can attend SPCC?

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Well, I assumed we did not have a choice.   Mecklenburg residents/CPCC and SPCC/non-Mecklenburg residents.  So, a Mecklenburg student can attend SPCC?

 

Yes, you can go to any of them.  They are state supported, not county.

 

We do not live in Mecklenburg County but my son goes to CPCC, Central Campus.  And Levine is in Meck county, but I have friends whose kids go there from Cabberrus, Union, Stanley, etc.....

 

The only time it matters is if you do Middle College, which is sponsored through CMS.  But if you do just regular dual enrollment, anyone can go.

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Well, I assumed we did not have a choice.   Mecklenburg residents/CPCC and SPCC/non-Mecklenburg residents.  So, a Mecklenburg student can attend SPCC?

 

As DawnM said, yes. We are not Mecklenburg residents but use CPCC, for instance. When we went to the CPCC presentation, Julie mentioned they had a student from Wilmington who was taking an online class through CPCC. You can also take classes at two different colleges at the same time, if I'm not mistaken, but would have to pay fees (if required) at both schools. Confusion may come in because I believe Charlotte Mecklenburg public school students who use the dual enrollment program are funded for books (not sure about fees) through the public school system and are limited to using CPCC to get that funding (the same with Cabarrus public school students and RCCC). As a homeschooler, you can do whichever you prefer because you don't get that funding.

 

The Middle College and Early College high schools are under the Career and College Promise umbrella (as the Cooperative Innovative High School portion), but are full-on public schools, not accessible to homeschoolers without giving up homeschool status, and operate under different rules than the jr/sr dual enrollment program. They are limited geographically. Unfortunately the  NC Community Colleges website page with the nice chart showing the differences seems to be down at the moment

 

With online classes, be careful to be sure there are not any requirements to be on-campus for anything if it will be a problem (exams, tests, projects, handing in things, etc). There was a thread about that recently, I believe, where someone was taken by surprise that the student had to hand in projects in person.

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