Homeschooling may be the answer
By Sue Loudon
The end of summer traditionally has parents ready for school to start but this year may be different. Is it safe? Should you go back to virtual class with Zoom or let your children go to the school building to see their friends as they want to do? It’s even more complicated if someone in your household has a pre-existing condition or Grandma is living with you.
There is another education possibility you may not have considered – homeschooling. With homeschooling, you decide the schedule and the curriculum. You must provide 1,000 hours of instruction each year and 600 of those hours must be in these five subjects: reading, math, social studies, language arts and science. You are required to teach 400 of the 600 hours at the regular home school location. You can’t just do nature walks for science instruction. You must also maintain a written record indicating subjects taught, activities engaged in and a portfolio of samples of each child’s academic progress. Missouri strongly recommends their publication or CD called First Things First, which explains the rules for state law compliance and A2ZHomeschool.com for non-faith based homeschool help. If this sounds intimidating there is a lot of help starting with the website,”Families for Home Education.”
Families for Home Education or FHE has set up Zoom meetings for new families thinking about or planning to homeschool this fall. Meetings on Thursday, August 6 at 7 pm or Tuesday, August 11 at 2 pm. are still available. It is necessary to make a reservation on the FHE website since some of their meetings have been completely booked due to the increased interest at this time.
According to homeschoolers, one of the most frequently asked questions is about social development. However, one of the most frequent reasons for homeschooling is bullying . This can happen to both boys and girls. There can be plenty of group activities with other homeschooled students in a safe setting so no one is subjected to bullying. According to studies the main reason parents choose homeschooling is to avoid the atmosphere of their local school which may include drugs and less than excellent instruction.
Betty Hathhorn homeschooled her four children for 20 years. She has three college graduates and a senior at the Lutheran High School in Kansas City. She taught all four of them through 8th grade.
“I certainly had moments when I thought ‘are we doing this right?’ At times it was almost too much to teach and also get my students to activities like sports and music, but I’m glad we did it,” she recalls. “I have heard other young mothers voice the same concerns,” she says. “They need the support of other homeschoolers.”
A local tutor named Kathleen Mamuric advises parents,”It’s not a bad idea to homeschool. Your child will learn more.” Kathleen has had 17 years experience in the classroom. Most of her clients need help with reading, English or math.