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medawyn

Homeschooling in NC? Homeschooling in CT?

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We'll know officially tomorrow, but it looks like DH is going to be getting a job offer with an opportunity to transfer either to Hartford-area, CT or Charlotte-area, NC.  I'm just looking for data points to add to our discussion.  I've looked up the legal requirements for both states, but I'd love to get an idea of actual ease of homeschooling, attitudes, opportunities (esp for secular homeschoolers).  Feel free to PM me.

 

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There are several WTM boardies in the Charlotte area; maybe they'll chime in.

NC is a fairly easy state, regulation-wise (as I'm sure you've read). As far as attitudes and opportunities, in an urban area like Charlotte, you'll probably have lots of co-ops, classes, etc. I'm more in the central part of the state, but I see *mostly* secular hs'ers (but I'm in a "progressive," university town so that may vary).  People are generally positive re: homeschooling.  The main downer, for me, is our inability to make use of public school resources (sports, classes, etc). 

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I'm in Charlotte. There is a very large, active homeschooling community here. There are things to do literally every day. I'm a member of about 15 different homeschooling facebook groups, including a homeschool hiking group, field trips, etc. I'm a secular homeschooler and there is a secular homeschooling facebook group. I believe there is a co-op but its north of Charlotte, too far from me. By and large this is the south and secular homeschoolers are in the minority. I don't let it deter me from doing things, but it can get a little awkward sometimes. I don't do co-ops because of it. We have great museums and there are always homeschooling events around town. Just in my area our local gymnastics studios and trampoline places have homeschool hours during the week. Our local YMCA (I'm in south Charlotte) has a homeschool academy with a lot of classes available each semester. My girls do an outdoor education class and PE and they are taking part in a field day next month. 

As far as legalities go, its so easy to homeschool here. I follow the guidelines but I've never been asked for anything. Nobody has asked for proof of standardized testing or attendance. 

Edited by tdbates78

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22 minutes ago, tdbates78 said:

I'm in Charlotte. There is a very large, active homeschooling community here. There are things to do literally every day. I'm a member of about 15 different homeschooling facebook groups, including a homeschool hiking group, field trips, etc. I'm a secular homeschooler and there is a secular homeschooling facebook group. I believe there is a co-op but its north of Charlotte, too far from me. By and large this is the south and secular homeschoolers are in the minority. I don't let it deter me from doing things, but it can get a little awkward sometimes. I don't do co-ops because of it. We have great museums and there are always homeschooling events around town. Just in my area our local gymnastics studios and trampoline places have homeschool hours during the week. Our local YMCA (I'm in south Charlotte) has a homeschool academy with a lot of classes available each semester. My girls do an outdoor education class and PE and they are taking part in a field day next month. 

As far as legalities go, its so easy to homeschool here. I follow the guidelines but I've never been asked for anything. Nobody has asked for proof of standardized testing or attendance. 

Thank you! I'm definitely pleased to hear there are lots of activities.  I have no idea about where we'd live or anything yet.  I'm trying not to get too deep into research (i.e. excited about opportunities) until we know for sure where we'll end up.  But we're trying to make a list of lifestyle/personal pros and cons to go along with the professional ones, so this helps quite a bit.  

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There are no homeschooling regulations in CT. There are “suggested guidelines” but they aren’t law. In CT, ALL parents are required by law to “cause their children to be educated”. The how is up to us. 

I would say that there are a lot of secular homeschoolers around. Plenty of religious ones as well but I’d say primarily secular. There are a lot of activities around the state, especially west of the Connecticut River. East of the river is more rural but west is more cities, therefore more opportunities. Although, you can stay plenty busy easy of the river as well. There are several good Facebook groups (if you’re into that sort of thing) for statewide groups as well as regional ones. CT is a small state so not much is truly out of reach. It takes about 2 hours to drive from the western border to eastern (110 miles) and 1 hour north to south (70 miles). Boston, NYC, RI, etc are all easy day trips.  

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1 hour ago, 2ndGenHomeschooler said:

There are no homeschooling regulations in CT. There are “suggested guidelines” but they aren’t law. In CT, ALL parents are required by law to “cause their children to be educated”. The how is up to us. 

I would say that there are a lot of secular homeschoolers around. Plenty of religious ones as well but I’d say primarily secular. There are a lot of activities around the state, especially west of the Connecticut River. East of the river is more rural but west is more cities, therefore more opportunities. Although, you can stay plenty busy easy of the river as well. There are several good Facebook groups (if you’re into that sort of thing) for statewide groups as well as regional ones. CT is a small state so not much is truly out of reach. It takes about 2 hours to drive from the western border to eastern (110 miles) and 1 hour north to south (70 miles). Boston, NYC, RI, etc are all easy day trips.  

I actually went to college in CT, so getting around the state is familiar.  But things like homeschooling, buying houses, and family life wasn't exactly on the radar then.  It will be interesting to revisit CT for a few years if that's what ends up happening.  I'm sure it looks different on this side of parenting!

Thank you for clearing up the regulations.  I was a little confused reading the law itself; it did read as a suggestion, but then it looked like some groups recommended submitting letters, etc.  

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CT is a bit weird because the *law* places responsibility for causing children to be educated (including the "how") on parents.... but then Education Department agency *guidelines* inform how districts are supposed to carry out their mandate to provide free and appropriate education to all parents who opt to "cause" education by outsourcing that parental responsibility to public schools.  But *parents* are not *mandated* to comply with the agency guidelines.  

(Some district personnel, particularly at the walking-into-the-office-off-the-streets-without-an-appointment level, genuinely don't understand this nuance; it genuinely is a bit weird.)

I'm on the western side of the state; there are lots of resources, particularly in STEM and the arts.  The ones I know of are secular, but then the ones I'd be inclined to use would be.  (My now-mostly-adult kids mostly attended brick & mortar schools, except for brief intervals for specific purposes.)

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I am in NC.  Homeschooling is very common.  There are lots of groups to join, be a part of, etc...

We are supposed to take attendance daily (stupid!) and test yearly.  No one checks.  I never, ever kept attendance.  And I tested many years but not all.  I had a Woodcock-Johnson older version at home and tested with that as it was free to me, but ordering tests is easy too.  My kids transitioned to college and/or public school just fine.

And in my area, there are lots of classes to sign up for, university model partial school programs, and part time school options.

Edited by DawnM
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I'm in CT (New Haven area), and there are lots of homeschoolers, and plenty of activities. And New England is a great place to be if you're learning American history. Plus we're close to both Boston and NYC.  

But... given the choice, I might choose NC. CT is an expensive state to live in, NC has better weather, and the Connecticut itself isn't doing wellfinancially

 (Overall, I love where we live, and the people around us! But I'm not blind to the issues our state has.)

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On 4/25/2019 at 11:45 AM, Sammish said:

I'm in CT (New Haven area), and there are lots of homeschoolers, and plenty of activities. And New England is a great place to be if you're learning American history. Plus we're close to both Boston and NYC.  

But... given the choice, I might choose NC. CT is an expensive state to live in, NC has better weather, and the Connecticut itself isn't doing wellfinancially

 (Overall, I love where we live, and the people around us! But I'm not blind to the issues our state has.)

Yes, given the choice, we too would choose NC. It is expensive to live here. The weather can be a challenge. But the people we love live here and this is where DH’s job is so we’re still here. 

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NC does have its own weather challenges--Google Hurricane Hugo for an example. And beware of pollen. That said, Raleigh's parks department is pretty great, and Charlotte's looks similar. You'd be 4 hours from a beach (much farther than in CT) but the beaches are warm enough to use more of the year.

But homeschooling is commonplace, and as well-accepted as attending a private or charter school. Mecklenburg County has over 6,000 registered families (and those with kids only in K and below aren't registered).

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