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When Covid started someone had a thread going here asking if we think homeschooling will increase. I said "no". Well.......our FB groups have been blowing up with new members, many saying that they have thought about HSing before, but this was the last straw.

Today, our governor announced that masks will not be required in schools. Oh my goodness, I can not tell you how many new members we got today.

So, I often say that I can be wrong, I've been wrong before. Well, I was very wrong about this 🙂

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When Covid started someone had a thread going here asking if we think homeschooling will increase. I said "no". Well.......our FB groups have been blowing up with new members, many saying that they ha

What I'm seeing a lot of on FB: school teachers who will now be staying home with their (very young) children, and who are looking to share their vast educational knowledge with the homeschool communi

I remember an ad I saw a few years ago in our area:  Seeking private tutor for 3 children.  $80,000 a year plus suite of rooms in waterfront mansion, car for personal and instructional use, 6 weeks pa

Wow.  I heard about a private school yesterday that had to close because half the current enrollees said they would not return if masks were required.  Enrollment would be too low to stay open, so they shut their doors. 

27 minutes ago, SereneHome said:

governor

If you don't mind telling the state, I am interested in knowing.

 

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We've had a ton of new members in our local group as well.   New homeschoolers and pre-pandemic homeschoolers both seem to be evenly split between the mask camps.  Some want to homeschool because they don't want their kids to wear masks all day, others want to homeschool because they feel the schools aren't going to be careful enough.  Our state (NJ) hasn't even released the requirements for schools to open yet, other than some very broad ideas.

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29 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Welp, time to go donate some money to the legal defense fund. Here come the regulations. 

That's the FIRST thing I said to my husband....

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40 minutes ago, Ann.without.an.e said:

Friends have been trying to register to hs in our state for two weeks but the site keeps shutting down because too many people are registering. 

Where I am, we only have to send a letter of intent to the district and that's it

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59 minutes ago, Patty Joanna said:

Wow.  I heard about a private school yesterday that had to close because half the current enrollees said they would not return if masks were required.  Enrollment would be too low to stay open, so they shut their doors. 

I have to say that I think they're a bit silly if they shut their doors based on a survey or what people are saying, without opening enrollment. They might have had an influx of new students!

2 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I will admit to being surprised more of them aren’t trying the online PS option first (assuming there is one) to see if it’s any better than last spring. Unless they underwent some huge philosophical shift, and want to do it long term.....

I think a chunk of it is a mix of people who don't have an online option, and people who have only younger children (so hs'ing on their own is less intimidating). 

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1 hour ago, Patty Joanna said:

Wow.  I heard about a private school yesterday that had to close because half the current enrollees said they would not return if masks were required.  Enrollment would be too low to stay open, so they shut their doors. 

If you don't mind telling the state, I am interested in knowing.

 

Oh man. I sure hope that doesn’t happen to ours. But now that you mention it, the faces of the parents I know who might say something like that are popping into my mind. 

I have to say, if masks are optional at our school, we will have to seriously consider our reenrollment. Still waiting to hear from our school. 

(For the record, I understand if a few individuals are genuinely unable to mask, I just can’t imagine not masking for no good reason.)

Edited by Seasider too
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15 minutes ago, katilac said:

I have to say that I think they're a bit silly if they shut their doors based on a survey or what people are saying, without opening enrollment. They might have had an influx of new students!

I think a chunk of it is a mix of people who don't have an online option, and people who have only younger children (so hs'ing on their own is less intimidating). 

It will be interesting to see what happens in my town. Our schools are super equipped with everything, I think kids get their own laptop starting in elementary school. When Covid started, by the following Monday everything was on-line and ready to go. And this is a fairly well-to-do town so lots of moms SAH or have flexible businesses

But we already had about 20 people join a town's newly created HS FB group....

 

 

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We were just discussing this today. We're not actively homeschooling anymore and not in touch with any local groups, but I figured there would be a sizeable increase in homeschooling if schools open in September. I know if I had a child in public or private school I would definitely be homeschooling until the pandemic is over, if that ever happens.😞

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1 hour ago, Patty Joanna said:

Wow.  I heard about a private school yesterday that had to close because half the current enrollees said they would not return if masks were required.  Enrollment would be too low to stay open, so they shut their doors. 

If you don't mind telling the state, I am interested in knowing.

 

I am not ignoring you, would just rather not say - can PM you

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30 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I will admit to being surprised more of them aren’t trying the online PS option first (assuming there is one) to see if it’s any better than last spring. Unless they underwent some huge philosophical shift, and want to do it long term.....

I've been wondering why more aren't using the online public charters. Don't most (all?) states have them?

Here in OK, Epic is very popular, pre-pandemic. Almost all the "homeschoolers" I know irl use an online public charter. They don't want to do it independently.

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8 minutes ago, Jentrovert said:

I've been wondering why more aren't using the online public charters. Don't most (all?) states have them?

30 states have online schools. It varies a lot on how many students they serve. 

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8 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I honestly don't know what we have here. I hear people talk about using K-12 and years ago, when I first started hs'ing oldest, a friend of hers started homeschooling at the same time, but online through the school district. It was literally 7 hours of video class a day. I felt horrible for that kid- they didn't make it six weeks and she was back in school. They're the only people I've known to do that- through a school. If you ask anyone around here what they use, 75% chance you'll get Classical Conversations, probably 20% Abeka and/or BJU, and 5% randos like me who use everything and the kitchen sink, so I don't think that charters are a thing here. 

But I'm going to say I was wrong too if this influx ends up being the deal here- I really thought we had another year before there was a big enough influx to rock the regulation boat. I saw in the Houston news, one of their massive school districts  (FBISD) has decided to go online only until some TBD point. I am betting all the other surrounding districts follow. Especially where I am- we're so small in comparison, I seriously doubt we'll strike out on our own- those big Houston districts are going to set the stage I'd think. 

Going to be super interesting though if a bunch of people who gave me the side eye for homeschooling all these years are suddenly in the same boat. I'm gonna need some restraint on my commentary, lol. 

Yeah, K-12 is the other option here, but I don't hear about anyone who likes it. Everyone moved to Epic a few years back. It's completely separate from the local districts. It seems to be very popular. I have friends in different areas who use it, and a lot seems to depend on the teacher that is assigned to you. Some are extremely nitpicky and others are more flexible. 

There is nothing like Classical Conversations here. I've met irl one person who uses Abeka and one person who uses Ambleside Online. Everyone else is Epic. I'm the rando like you. 😁 

It will be interesting to see what happens.

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2 hours ago, SereneHome said:

When Covid started someone had a thread going here asking if we think homeschooling will increase. I said "no". Well.......our FB groups have been blowing up with new members, many saying that they have thought about HSing before, but this was the last straw.

Today, our governor announced that masks will not be required in schools. Oh my goodness, I can not tell you how many new members we got today.

So, I often say that I can be wrong, I've been wrong before. Well, I was very wrong about this 🙂

I’m always glad to see people homeschool but really sad that people are feeling like that’s the only option right now.

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1 hour ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I will admit to being surprised more of them aren’t trying the online PS option first (assuming there is one) to see if it’s any better than last spring. Unless they underwent some huge philosophical shift, and want to do it long term.....

The majority of the school districts in my state don't have their own virtual academy so we have to apply to the virtual school during open enrollment and see if they will accept our student.  Open enrollment is typically in Feb/Mar.  I haven't really been following what they are doing this year but it's entirely possible that by the time people realized that they might need/want a different option for the fall, it was already too late for the PS virtual options.

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We've had tons of people joining our local group. Our district is starting back all virtual and going to reconsider each month to decide when to return every other day and then every day. I hope they get special needs populations back in first. Most of what I've heard agrees this is wise, though frustrating. Many are joining our group with young kids,bi think hoping for more consistency and less screen time 

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Yep it's been kind of nuts.  A few are asking about K12 and the local hybrid schools both which could double enrollment and still have a waiting list at the moment.  Many we looking for a box or something to stay in step for the year.  But more seem to be truly jumping in. 

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Also just to add some anecdotal evidence some long term homeschoolers are getting their approvals extended without the home visit because the home ed department is snowed under with applications.  We are due for review next month and I’m kind of hoping that’s us because it’s one less thing to organise.

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6 hours ago, Ausmumof3 said:

Also just to add some anecdotal evidence some long term homeschoolers are getting their approvals extended without the home visit because the home ed department is snowed under with applications.  We are due for review next month and I’m kind of hoping that’s us because it’s one less thing to organise.

We had our evaluations waved this year (in our state). Many seasoned homeschoolers are quite worried about that.

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Just now, SereneHome said:

We had our evaluations waved this year (in our state). Many seasoned homeschoolers are quite worried about that.

Are they worried that there will be a lot of less responsible homeschoolers or something?  I can see how it could be a drawback I guess.

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2 minutes ago, Ausmumof3 said:

Are they worried that there will be a lot of less responsible homeschoolers or something?  I can see how it could be a drawback I guess.

They are worried about that and a big increase in oversight as a result of that.

We already had a professor from Harvard saying all kinds of "great" things about homeschooling back in March and our state senator was saying that blue collar workers are not educated enough to homeschool. A few years ago we fought a bill that wanted mandatory home visits to homeschooling families from child protective services to make sure there is no neglect and abuse.

So, while some people in my HS groups think that this influx is great, many are very much worried what it will mean for rules and oversight.

 

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19 minutes ago, SereneHome said:

They are worried about that and a big increase in oversight as a result of that.

We already had a professor from Harvard saying all kinds of "great" things about homeschooling back in March and our state senator was saying that blue collar workers are not educated enough to homeschool. A few years ago we fought a bill that wanted mandatory home visits to homeschooling families from child protective services to make sure there is no neglect and abuse.

So, while some people in my HS groups think that this influx is great, many are very much worried what it will mean for rules and oversight.

 

Yeah I get that.  I think the best we can do is be a voice out there pointing people to good quality academic sources and encouraging education focused homeschooling (dumb that that is even a thing).  I actually think many of the new ones here are probably more academically driven - they are specifically concerned with the lack of learning going on at school and it’s really come home to them when they became responsible for the kids school for a while.  Whereas our main group has more idealogical homeschoolers that may unschool with varying levels of success.  But I totally understand the concern.

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11 hours ago, Erica in OR said:

I know of others who will do the same if masks *are* required. They feel uncomfortable about their children wearing masks all day long.

Rock < > hard place

Erica in OR

Yeah, i just saw a mom at my Catholic parish talking about how they are not sending their kid to the preschool this year because the teachers will be wearing masks. Students don't have to in preschool, that wasn't the issue, but they don't want their kid around a teacher in a mask. Said that they know there are risks with the virus, but the "developmental risks" of having a teacher in a mask outweigh that. Um..Y'all, I'm in Florida. And another mom said her kid was in the preschool summer school program at this SAME SCHOOL and two weeks in they had a classmate  test positive, and all kids in the class had to isolate for 14 days...after that they just didn't bother going back because they knew it would keep happening. 

so this woman,  AFTER hearing that the school has already had a preschooler test positive, was still thinking teachers should not wear masks in the preschool classroom!!!!

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I am a grumpy old fart who keeps trying to ignore the influx of posts.  (To be fair, I’ve been a grumpy old fart for the better part of the past 10 years, lol.)
The empath in me wants to answer everyone’s questions and hold their hands while they’re going through a very stressful time. But then I feel like I’m trying to teach someone to write an essay when they haven’t learned to read yet.  I feel so bad for these people who are looking for instructions in a simple FB comment. Especially when so many “normal” local homeschool resources are on hold during COVID. 😞 

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3 minutes ago, Carrie12345 said:

 But then I feel like I’m trying to teach someone to write an essay when they haven’t learned to read yet.  I feel so bad for these people who are looking for instructions in a simple FB comment. Especially when so many “normal” local homeschool resources are on hold during COVID. 😞 

yes!!!!!

I've taken to sharing the Cathy Duffy full grade curriculum package page on my main page, and the list of Catholic resources in the catholic mom's group I'm part of. Let them start there. 

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10 hours ago, Jentrovert said:

I've been wondering why more aren't using the online public charters. Don't most (all?) states have them?

Here in OK, Epic is very popular, pre-pandemic. Almost all the "homeschoolers" I know irl use an online public charter. They don't want to do it independently.

We don't have any online public options in NJ.  They looked into K12 years back and didn't approve it, I think it was the year a bunch of people/places were suing K12.

We have a few Classical Conversations groups that don't seem that big, some other coops usually specifically Christian, Muslim or Jewish, or for certain ages only.   The vast majority of homeschoolers around here seem to be between relaxed and unschooling, or just doing T4L or Accelus.  We have no regulations at all so it's pretty easy to do what you want.

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3 minutes ago, Where's Toto? said:

We don't have any online public options in NJ.  They looked into K12 years back and didn't approve it, I think it was the year a bunch of people/places were suing K12.

We have a few Classical Conversations groups that don't seem that big, some other coops usually specifically Christian, Muslim or Jewish, or for certain ages only.   The vast majority of homeschoolers around here seem to be between relaxed and unschooling, or just doing T4L or Accelus.  We have no regulations at all so it's pretty easy to do what you want.

Same here. I'm actually glad so many people I know currently are doing the online public charter. If they weren't doing that, for many of them it would be nothing. 

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The number of people added to the local homeschooling FB group is insane. Most of them are shocked that there is no state money in in. The long-time homeschoolers are trying to explain that they don’t want the funds OR the strings that would be attached. These people just haven’t quite come to terms with funding their own homeschool, but that’s life in Maryland. 
 

In the OPs defense, I don’t think we all fully grasped in March that we’d still be shut down in the fall. 

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My March predictions are a bit off also. Everyone has flooded the charter schools, as I predicted, but they have hit capacity and many districts have capped how many students they can “let” go to a charter. (Apparently our state has a % cap for districts.) This has meant that families late to the game are now opting to straight up homeschool.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of posters have been the “what online thing can I do that is free and will allow my kids to learn while I work full time?” kind.

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What I am seeing locally is a lot of confusion and frustration.  Most parents do not want to homeschool, but also do not want a repeat of what happened last school year for what was given as school work at home.  At least one of the local districts is offering an online alternative that parents can sign their students up for this year, but they haven't been told yet what to expect if they decide to stick with the traditional school.  It is making it hard for them to decide what would be the best option for their family.  From what I am hearing, I think there are a lot of parents with older students or a parent that can stay home with younger students that will choose that option.  But, we are an area with most families having both parents working or single parent families that can't/really don't want to homeschool.

Statewide I think there is going to be a significant increase in homeschooling in the short term.  I have seen a lot of questions on a local homeschool organization facebook page about how to start, what the regulations are, and so on.  But many of them want a free online option that they can just have their kids do without a lot of input from the parents.  I am guessing though that when given the option and it feels relatively safe again, most of the new homeschoolers will go back to traditional schooling (though I think that will look much different than in the past).

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13 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I will admit to being surprised more of them aren’t trying the online PS option first (assuming there is one) to see if it’s any better than last spring. Unless they underwent some huge philosophical shift, and want to do it long term.....

 

13 hours ago, Jentrovert said:

I've been wondering why more aren't using the online public charters. Don't most (all?) states have them?

Here in OK, Epic is very popular, pre-pandemic. Almost all the "homeschoolers" I know irl use an online public charter. They don't want to do it independently.

My state was in the process of shutting some down. Both CA and K12 online charters have had entire grade school levels closed. One doesn’t offer elementary and the other doesn’t offer high school. All of the online charter schools have waiting lists. 
 

I think parents are looking for consistency and fewer disruptions to their child’s education. So it’s less about philosophy or delivery and more about control over some aspect of their lives. 
 

ETA: my district already has an public online school for credit recovery and distance learning and they have been surprisingly silent through all of this.  

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Last Saturday was MACHE (Minnesota) graduation which we watched live, from Michigan. 

I don’t  know who the master of ceremonies was,  speaker was, but at the Nd he said he has heard 40% of families will be homeschooling next year. He didn’t put it in context as to how many are now or 40 percent more, could be open for discussion. 

He then went on to say one curriculum publisher has expressed concern over running out product. 

2 of my kids currently homeschool,  2 more families were in charter schools or private schools. One of them is considering homeschooling this year for multiple reasons. The last one is sticking with the plan for charter schools, but is waiting to see what the plans for opening  are there. 

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6 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

😱🥺- That makes me want to go panic buy a bunch of books. 

LOL! I can feel myself getting pulled to websites now! Fingers ... inching ... towards ... keyboard ...

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I just got off the phone with K12 as I am attempting to help my neighbor enroll her kids for this coming year.   Their website keeps crashing on us.  I was told that they expected and prepared for a lot more people enrolling with them this year but that enrollments are surpassing anything they expected and their system is struggling at times.  They have an enrollment cap in our state and it sounds like they're expecting to max it out in most grades, at least for the first semester.  On top of that there are at least 45 new families on our rural, little FB group who have full intentions to traditionally home school. Prior to them joining we had 187 members.  That's a HUGE increase for our area!

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On 7/14/2020 at 8:21 PM, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Welp, time to go donate some money to the legal defense fund. Here come the regulations. 

I let me membership lapse and I've been thinking it might be a good idea to start it up again due to what I forsee happening, which is a call for tighter restrictions on homeschoolers since so many are "homeschooling" now. Sigh.

On 7/14/2020 at 9:01 PM, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I will admit to being surprised more of them aren’t trying the online PS option first (assuming there is one) to see if it’s any better than last spring. Unless they underwent some huge philosophical shift, and want to do it long term.....

In my area 99% of the new homeschoolers to our local page (of which there are at least 10 a day) want a free, online, hands off option to "homeschool" with. The sweet ladies on it are gently trying to provide some advice about traditional homeschooling but I don't think they're getting through.

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In our county district it appears the only online option is the county virtual school. There is no other hybrid or online option. I read they limited the virtual school enrollment to 100 for elementary school. Well they had far more requests than that so parents are trying to figure out what to do if their child doesn't get into that option. School starts Aug 5th and they have no idea if their child will get into virtual or they will have to homeschool. 

We have a separate city school system that is offering the virtual school, in person, or a hybrid option. But the county it is all or nothing and the virtual school is very limited. But our cases are rising and I don't know that they will even be able to meet at all in person. So then I guess everyone will be remote, but there is no plan for that. So, yes, lots who would prefer virtual school will be forced into homeschooling if they aren't comfortable returning. 

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I've noticed a shift in my FB groups this past week since online charters are full. If a newbie posts key words or phrases like they are scared, overwhelmed or looking for a program or want free and online, they are recommending that they use the online option through the public school system. With the all online option, they will have a teacher to contact and help them through it and a prepared program that will be easier to work with than starting from scratch. Just interesting to see that shift. 

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On 7/15/2020 at 11:17 AM, prairiewindmomma said:

 

Unfortunately, the vast majority of posters have been the “what online thing can I do that is free and will allow my kids to learn while I work full time?” kind.

As much as those posts normally annoy me, in this situation, I get it. They may truly need that, if the alternative is risking their child's life or not having food. 

My personal new pet peeve is people asking about virtual online school for .... THREE YEAR OLDS!!!!!!

These are stay at home mom's, one of them has an education degree, but her little 3 yr old needs "a teacher" and "the school experience" so needs a virtual school. I just...I can't. I've told no less than FOUR people in the last twelve hours to stop worrying about educating their 3 yr old. 

Let them roll in mud and watch PBS kids. It will be fine. You have bigger issues now, I promise. 

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What I'm seeing a lot of on FB: school teachers who will now be staying home with their (very young) children, and who are looking to share their vast educational knowledge with the homeschool community. 

Idk but it rubs me wrong. Maybe I'm easily offended. But I have a degree in education (and taught 5 years before having children)...and all that was not worth much at all when it came to teaching my own children.  Maybe it's helped some small bit, but my experience in the classroom was much different than my experience at home (in many ways).

(This is probably a rant.)

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8 minutes ago, alisoncooks said:

What I'm seeing a lot of on FB: school teachers who will now be staying home with their (very young) children, and who are looking to share their vast educational knowledge with the homeschool community. 

Idk but it rubs me wrong. Maybe I'm easily offended. But I have a degree in education (and taught 5 years before having children)...and all that was not worth much at all when it came to teaching my own children.  Maybe it's helped some small bit, but my experience in the classroom was much different than my experience at home (in many ways).

(This is probably a rant.)

I had a bad thought about all the times people have asked why the school district didn’t do a better job with their background checks after a teacher was arrested. And now they are letting them go one-one-one with their kid because they posted in a social media group? But nah I’m sure they are doing their due diligence. And yes, I know not all teachers are pervs. 

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6 minutes ago, alisoncooks said:

What I'm seeing a lot of on FB: school teachers who will now be staying home with their (very young) children, and who are looking to share their vast educational knowledge with the homeschool community. 

Idk but it rubs me wrong. Maybe I'm easily offended. But I have a degree in education (and taught 5 years before having children)...and all that was not worth much at all when it came to teaching my own children.  Maybe it's helped some small bit, but my experience in the classroom was much different than my experience at home (in many ways).

(This is probably a rant.)

 

I also see a lot of B&M teachers venting about the challenges of converting lessons...which I'm sure are considerable...but after successfully teaching online for the last year and a half, they seriously need to think outside of the box, grab an awesome web cam, invest in Manycam or Camtwist, and think EDUTAINMENT!

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1 hour ago, alisoncooks said:

What I'm seeing a lot of on FB: school teachers who will now be staying home with their (very young) children, and who are looking to share their vast educational knowledge with the homeschool community. 

Idk but it rubs me wrong. Maybe I'm easily offended. But I have a degree in education (and taught 5 years before having children)...and all that was not worth much at all when it came to teaching my own children.  Maybe it's helped some small bit, but my experience in the classroom was much different than my experience at home (in many ways).

(This is probably a rant.)

Well, they are very prepared to emulated school at home.  Unfortunately, that is what most of these reluctant homeschoolers understand and want because very few are interested in homeschooling long term.  I have offered resources to many of these parents, but most really want the public school at home with less busy work that their kids will love without any change to their own lifestyles.  

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8 minutes ago, dirty ethel rackham said:

Well, they are very prepared to emulated school at home.  Unfortunately, that is what most of these reluctant homeschoolers understand and want because very few are interested in homeschooling long term.  I have offered resources to many of these parents, but most really want the public school at home with less busy work that their kids will love without any change to their own lifestyles.  

 

Also, they want it to be inexpensive and really high quality, right?

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4 minutes ago, Tanaqui said:

 

Also, they want it to be inexpensive and really high quality, right?

Yes. And then we have the “I know everything about homeschooling and I am starting a co-op yet I have never homeschooled before people” coming out a lot. Or the lady who insists that all you need is brain pop. It is a complete curriculum and any child who uses just it is well prepared for college/life.  

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8 hours ago, importswim said:

In my area 99% of the new homeschoolers to our local page (of which there are at least 10 a day) want a free, online, hands off option to "homeschool" with

They are facing the double-dip homeschoolers have paid for years.  School taxes and BYOCurriculum, both.  

 

2 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

My personal new pet peeve is people asking about virtual online school for .... THREE YEAR OLDS!!!!!!

Same here.  "Do you know of an online curriculum for my child?  He's in preschool."  GO PLAY!  Read to the tyke!  For heaven's sake. 

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49 minutes ago, itsheresomewhere said:

Yes. And then we have the “I know everything about homeschooling and I am starting a co-op yet I have never homeschooled before people” coming out a lot. Or the lady who insists that all you need is brain pop. It is a complete curriculum and any child who uses just it is well prepared for college/life.  

 

And I've seen more than a few of "My neighbor/sister/friend/coworker's spouse homeschools, I wonder if they'll teach my kids too. For free. Even though they're not even close to the age/grade of their own kids, and their kids don't like my kids anyway."

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6 minutes ago, Tanaqui said:

 

And I've seen more than a few of "My neighbor/sister/friend/coworker's spouse homeschools, I wonder if they'll teach my kids too. For free. Even though they're not even close to the age/grade of their own kids, and their kids don't like my kids anyway."

Quite few of those.  My favorite of the hour is -  I need a teacher to homeschool my three kids next year.  Hours are 9-4. The pay is 100 a week.  

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On our governor's FB page, whenever there is an announcement re: virtual schooling, there's always TONS of people who comment, asking  when they're getting their tax dollars back. Ya know, the ones that pay for education/school. I'm like -- get in line, lol.  😂 If that were the case, I'm back-owed 9 years worth! 😉 

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