Thinking About Home School?
Knowing What it Means is a Good Place to Start
The phrase “home school” means lots of different things to different people. Basically home school is when the child learns from the safety of home. Not in the traditional brick-and-mortar school setting. Caregivers that home school have more responsibility and freedom over what and how a child learns. Moving beyond that basic understanding, however, is critical for caregivers who are seriously considering home school as an option.
YOU Are The Primary Educator
The first – and probably the most important – thing to understand is that all true home school options require the caregiver to be primarily responsible for a child’s education. Everything a traditional classroom teacher does (selecting curriculum, teaching, grading, etc.) is the responsibility of the caregiver. Of course, a caregiver may choose to engage tutors, private instructors, join homeschool collectives or “pods” to help inspire ideas or share the workload. However, the responsibility for ensuring the child is learning is on the caregiver.
Since education is a requirement in all 50 states, one must inform the state if they are educating a child at home. You can home school in California two different ways. One way is for the caregiver to fill out paperwork declaring that their home school is a private school. Caregivers choosing this model have the maximum amount of freedom in deciding what and how their child learns. Their responsibilities also include covering the entire cost of the education, certifying attendance, meeting academic requirements and preparing acceptable transcripts. Some private schools also offer to support homeschooled students and if a caregiver is willing to pay tuition, this is another option to explore.
Homeschooling With A Public Charter School
California also supports homeschooled students through the public school system. Visions In Education is one of the leading providers of free support for caregivers who choose to home school. Like the private system, caregivers who choose this option are still primarily responsible for educating their children, however there are some valuable benefits and a few limitations.
Starting with the benefits, a TK-8th grade Visions student in the home school program is provided up to $2,800 a year to pay for the educational costs associated with learning at home. This budget covers books, materials, software, extracurricular classes, laptops and more. Caregivers also have a credentialed teacher as an important resource to help with curriculum selection and monitoring the child’s progress. While caregivers are still responsible for grading students’ assignments, Visions tracks and accurately reports those grades to colleges and universities.
Is Visions Right For You?
There are some limitations if you home school through a public school, including a charter school like Visions. According to the California Constitution public funds can’t be used for religious curriculum. So if that is a priority, the public option may not be the best choice for you. As a public school, Visions is also accountable for the academic progress of its students – even those in home school. Our students must follow the same state testing requirements as traditional schools. It’s incredibly important to Visions that all students are prepared to progress through their academic journey and beyond.
If you are interested in homeschooling your child at Visions, please visit our TK-8 Grade Home School Program page for more information.
At Home High School Options
If taking on the responsibility of teaching a child is more than a caregiver is ready for but still wants or needs an option outside of the traditional school setting, Visions also has Independent Study and University Prep high school programs available.