Two questions for homeschooling in Florida....LONG
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  1. #1
    aprilnfla is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Default Two questions for homeschooling in Florida....LONG

    Hello all,

    I am very new to homeschooling and find myself lost most of the time while homeschooling my 3rd grader.

    I read the packet that the Flager School District gave me to homeschool my son, but it doesn't say if there are a certain amount of hours required per day.

    He normally does about 30-45 mins a day of reading, 2 math sections in the time4learning, 2 language arts sections and either a science or something fun around the house with me and my 4-year-old. Being a personal trainer I also have him engage in some type of physical education with me about 3+ days a week and I am not sure if this is required or not, but I'm keeping track of it still just in case.

    Does this seem like enough work daily? I am keeping a portfolio on him by the week as well. He has only been homeschooled now for going on a week. I do have him doing handwriting as well starting this week.

    He's behind his 3rd grade class because of an out of state move (being the reason for homeschooling), so he's working through Christmas vacation and over the summer to be on track for the 4th grade.

    Okay, my second question is does he need to take the FCAT testing? I have heard nothing from the school about that and can't find anything on that either. I am assuming that he does, but I suppose I would take him to the nearest school the day of testing? Thanks so much for any input!

    April

  2. #2
    aprilnfla is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    I meant I've been homeschooling him for going on 2 weeks - (had a 4-y/o talking to me while posting)! LOL

  3. #3
    hearthstone_academy's Avatar
    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    Hi, April. Have you seen this yet?

    Several members of this board homeschool in Florida. Hopefully some of them will be along to help you out.

    I looked at Florida's homeschooling requirements. They do not specify a certain number of hours per day. They require that you keep a portfolio, but there is no portfolio review.

    Floridians have four choices for testing. If you choose the standardized test option, I would be very surprised if a public school would allow your child to just show up on test day and participate in the testing. Unless Florida is very different than Oregon, homeschoolers are expect to utilize independent testing. The tests cost money, too. You might be able to arrange something through the public school system, but likely would forfeit at least some of your "homeschooler" status so they can "count" your son as a student.

    Floridians, help me out here.

    Mom of six . . . current students and homeschool graduates. Enjoying using Time4Learning since 2006!

  4. #4
    aprilnfla is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Thanks Kelly!

    I did get some of that information that was listed on there in a packet. As far as the portfolio review, they state that the superintendant can request the information from you for the portfolio at any time, but they have to give you 15 days notice. I'm just concerned that maybe he's not doing enough everyday. Being that he's knew at this, it's really hard to keep him focused.

    The testing at the end of the year (I was told by the district) was free through a certified teacher that I have to find (so maybe that teacher will charge me), for him to begin 4th grade next year. They want to make sure that he's on track.

    I was under the impression that FCATs were mandatory, but when your homeschooled I'm finding that the district doesn't really care?

    I very much appreciate you locating that information and taking the time to help me with that!

  5. #5
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    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    If I remember correctly, you are only homeschooling for the remainder of this year and then will be placing your son back in the public school system. If so, you are in the interesting position of being subject to homeschooling laws, while still keeping in mind what the public schools will require to re-enroll him next year. If the tests you mentioned will be required in order for the public school system to accept him then, yes, they should pay for it.

    Mom of six . . . current students and homeschool graduates. Enjoying using Time4Learning since 2006!

  6. #6
    aprilnfla is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    That's good to know...I'll need to be more persistant then with getting them to return my calls!

    Thanks so much for your help!!
    April

  7. #7
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    MamaMary is offline Senior Member
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    April,

    You do NOT have to keep hours here in Florida. (yeah)

    You do need to keep a portfolio which should contain 3 main items:

    1- Samples of your work. (perhaps one page from each subject every semester. With T4L'ing you can just print off something.

    2- List of books read.

    3- Log of educational activities. (You could simply print out the lesson plans from here)

    You must keep your work for up to two years before discarding. (warm smile)

    If you are registered with your county they will probably never even ask to see your portfolio, but you need to have it just incase.

    Florida is a pretty friendly homeschool state!
    Mary, Child of the King of Kings, Jesus Christ! Wife to best friend and Mama to her four boys 91, 96, 00, 02, Homeschooling since 1998! Come visit us on our blog! http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/MamaMary/

  8. #8
    aprilnfla is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Thank you VERY much for your reply! Not to sound like a ding dong, but when you say '3- Log of educational activities. (You could simply print out the lesson plans from here)' can you give me an example? I have a terrible problem of worrying way too much about every detail so I want to make sure I'm doing this right! LOL.

    Thanks again so much for your help. Also, do they test your child/children at the end of each year? They told me I had to do that regardless if I placed him back in public school or not....if so, how did you go about doing that?

    Thanks again,
    April

  9. #9
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    Hi April,

    A log of educational activities could be...,

    * A lesson plan book in which you've hand recorded your lesson plans.

    * A photo copy of the table of contents of any of your books and you just pencil in the date you did the lesson.

    * A copy of Time4Learning's progress report.(which already has the date and time documented for you, THANK YOU T4L'ING!)

    Yes, at the end of the year you need to set up/schedule either an evaluation which is when you have a certified teacher look at your childs work, talk w/ you, talk w/ your child and sign a paper saying that they have made FORWARD progress. (they do not have to go up a certain amount, just have to be making FORWARD progress) Or you can have your child tested.

    I personally choose testing. We've used the same tester every year since 2000.

    You do NOT need, nor SHOULD you send in your test results. You just send in a form stating that your child was tested and made forward progress.

    I hope this helps,
    Mary (warm smile)
    Mary, Child of the King of Kings, Jesus Christ! Wife to best friend and Mama to her four boys 91, 96, 00, 02, Homeschooling since 1998! Come visit us on our blog! http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/MamaMary/

  10. #10
    aprilnfla is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    That is so great, thank you very much for your help. Does the person that you use allow others to use her for the testing and or evaluation?

    Best wishes!
    April

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