New to the idea of Homeschooling
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  1. #1
    mwsimps is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Default New to the idea of Homeschooling

    I have a fifteen year old daughter that is really wanting to be homeschooled. Can anyone with experience help me decide if this is right for our current situation. I am a single parent and work a full time job. Is this something I can do and work the hours I do? My daughter has had a rough time in school with some of the other children and I am afraid to pull her out of the public school sytem because she will have to deal with rude or mean people her entire life. I don’t want her to have to deal with these kids but at the same time I want her to experience and be able to handle every type of person in this world. Hope that makes sense. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you

  2. #2
    hearthstone_academy's Avatar
    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    Default Re: New to the idea of Homeschooling

    Hi, and welcome to the forum!

    You can definitely homeschool your daughter while working, especially with a curriculum like Time4Learning. Students who do best aren't just let go and told to "do their lessons", though, so you might consider whether you will have enough time (and energy, if you're like me ) after work to help her with anything she finds confusing, look over her scores, grade any worksheets if you decide to use the optional worksheets, and so forth. That all doesn't take much time if you do it every day.

    Coming from a mom who homeschooled all of her kids until they went to college, they had plenty of opportunity for conflict resolution in Scouts, 4H, library day, community classes, etc. What I like is that my kids were dealing with all age levels . . . babies, younger kids, kids their age, older kids, adults, the elderly . . . It really isn't "natural" to put kids in big groups, all the same age. Many will become peer dependent, meaning they can only relate to individuals like them. Others will be bullied. It's only in recent history that society started grouping kids according to age. Even in the 1800s in America, the one-room schoolhouse had kids of varying ages all in one room, and playing together at recess.

    My eldest four are grown, and the fifth started college this year. None of them have had a bit of problem socially. In fact, people often express surprise that they were homeschooled.

    I guess I would argue that homeschooling might make kids BETTER able to get along in the real world. School is not like the real world. Think about all the differences between school and a workplace. Workers have many more options for filing grievances. And a worker always knows they CAN quit their job if it gets that bad. Psychologically, that gives one an advantage.

    Do know that, when homeschooling, the parent creates, maintains, signs, and stands behind any documents the student needs, including the diploma and transcript. All fifty states allow a parent to issue a high school diploma for their own child. Employers are not allowed to discriminate against a homeschool diploma. Colleges are more interested in a student's entrance exam scores than in how they learned what they know. Many colleges actively recruit homeschooled students. Homeschooling a high schooler isn't a hands-off experience for the parent, though.

    Many people mistakenly think of or refer to online schools as "homeschooling". Time4Learning isn't an online school. Time4Learning is for actually homeschooling. The best place to learn about homeschooling high school is the Let's Homeschool High School site.

    Good luck as you make decisions for your daughter. I'm sorry you and she are needing to deal with problems at school.

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

  3. #3
    Jillcomp10 is offline Junior Member Newbie
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    Default Re: New to the idea of Homeschooling

    First time post, apologies if I am not posting in the right place... how do I find out if time4learning meets requirements for TN homeschool and which of the 3 options that TN requires would it fall under?

  4. #4
    hearthstone_academy's Avatar
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    Default Re: New to the idea of Homeschooling

    Hi, Jill. I'm not an attorney and I don't live in Tennessee, but I have experience helping parents understand their state's homeschool laws. I can get you started, but you should research your state's homeschool laws yourself, too. That's my disclaimer.

    Tennessee has three options. Only the first one would be considered homeschooling by most people, because the second option (signing up with a church-related school) and the third option (signing up for a distance-learning school) are actually school enrollments. Homeschooling isn't about where the learning takes place. It's about what laws must be followed and who is responsible for following those laws. It frustrates me that even some states' laws don't understand that. When homeschooling, the parent is responsible for following the homeschool laws in the student's state of residence, and the parent creates, maintains, signs, and stands behind any any educational documents the student needs. When you sign up for a school (church-related, distance learning, online, etc.), the school is responsible for following the school laws (not homeschool laws) in the state where the school is located.

    So, Time4Learning is used for the first option: Independent Home School. Time4Learning isn't an online school or distance-learning program. It is a homeschool curriculum. Think of us as a fun, online alternative to purchasing a big stack of textbooks for your child.

    Tennessee doesn't require any certain subjects or content, but you do have to have your child tested in grades 5, 7, and 9, so you will want to use a "typical" curriculum. The curriculum provided by Time4Learening was developed to be used in public schools and is used in many schools. Students who do well on their Time4Learning lessons usually do very well on any standardized test.

    Here are Tennessee's homeschool laws that I found online today. Laws can change, which is why we always suggest you visit your state's Department of Education website:

    Option 1: Independent home school.
    1. Ensure that you have the required teacher qualifications.

    You must have at least a high school diploma or a GED.


    2. Submit a notice of intent.

    Before the start of the school year, you must submit a notice of intent to the superintendent of your local school district (also called a local education agency, or LEA) “for purpose of reporting only.” (If you move to Tennessee during the school year, you should file your notice of intent within a reasonable time after arriving in the state.) Your notice must include the names, number, ages, and grade levels of the children you are homeschooling, the location of your school, the curriculum to be offered (no particular subjects are required), the proposed hours of instruction, and your educational qualifications. A notice of intent form is available on the Tennessee Department of Education’s website.

    This is Kelly speaking now: You can print the lesson plans/scope and sequence from your Time4Learning parent dashboard to satisfy the curriculum part of your notice of intent.


    3. Submit proof of immunization.

    Proof that your child has been immunized or has a medical or a religious exemption from immunization must be attached to your notice of intent.


    4. Provide the required hours of instruction.

    You must teach at least four hours per school day for 180 days each academic year.

    Here is Kelly again. Be sure you count things like arts and crafts, 4H, Scouts, church or other organizational activities, piano lessons or music practice, organized sports or driveway basketball with a friend, volunteer work or a part time job, and casual parental instruction in things like cooking or auto mechanics. No student should be sitting in front of online lessons all day long.


    5. Maintain attendance records.

    You must maintain attendance records, which must be available for inspection by the local superintendent and must be submitted to the superintendent at the end of each school year. An attendance reporting formis available on the Tennessee Department of Education’s website.

    Kelly here: Field trip days (history and culture while on vacation, math while matching coupons at the grocery store, life skills during a part time job, P.E. while participating in Little League) count as school days.


    6. Test your child in grades 5, 7, and 9.

    In grades 5, 7, and 9, your child must take a standardized test administered by the commissioner of education, by someone designated by the commissioner, or by a professional testing service approved by the LEA. You may be present with your child during the 5th-grade test.
    Here is what to do if your child’s test score is low: If your child’s test score is six to nine months behind his or her appropriate grade level in reading, language arts, mathematics, or science, you must submit a “remedial course” to the local superintendent. The remedial course must be designed by you and a Tennessee-certified teacher who is certified or endorsed in the grade level, course, subject matter in which your child is being remediated.
    Additionally, if your child’s test score is more than one year behind his or her appropriate grade level for two consecutive, required tests, and if your child is not learning disabled, the local superintendent may require you to enroll your child in a public, private, or church-related school.



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

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