Homeschool News – Week of February 14 2019
TOP STORIES THIS WEEK:
THE BAD NEWS:
IOWA: Homeschoolers could soon be treated like child abusers in Iowa! This week State Representative Mary Mascher (D) introduced House Bill HF 272 which would require quarterly home visits for students being homeschooled, even with no accusation of abuse or neglect. In our opinion this a) adds unnecessary work to an already over-worked social service, and b) won’t avoid abusive situations as we already know from kids in public school who are abused. Call or write to your representative and make your voice heard, Iowans!
GEORGIA: Similarly, there may soon be a push for more regulation of homeschoolers in the state because of the tragedy of the Crocker children who were pulled out of school to be homeschooled, but were later found buried in the family back yard. There is no denying that this is a horrible tragedy, but treating homeschoolers like criminals with home visits monthly or semi-monthly is a vast over-reaction to this situation in our view. We agree with Mary Beth Morris from the Georgia Home Education Association who said, “Homeschooling didn’t lead to this. There was already evil going on way before the children were withdrawn from school.” Occasional checks on all homeschooled children won’t fix the problem. “Just seeing the child isn’t the answer,” she said. “If it were, then there wouldn’t be any kids abused in public school.” Morris said homeschooling is not a risk factor for child abuse or neglect, but previous involvement with child protective services is. She said there’s plenty of blame to go around for what the Crocker children endured; “Their family, neighborhood, community, local law enforcement and DFCS failed them.”
MARYLAND: House Bill 356 is set to add requirements for church-exempt and state-approved schools to submit documents to the state annually proving their curriculum and course of study, along with accreditation status, occupancy permit, and fire marshal approval. These documents are required whether or not the school operates an umbrella program, so this could potentially affect church-run schools and homeschools because the language is so broad and vague. The HSLDA is working to clarify the language.
THE GOOD NEWS:
SOUTH DAKOTA: There was a big win for homeschoolers this week when South Dakota lawmakers came back with a rewrite of HB 1066 to omit homeschoolers from the state requirement to pass a citizenship test for high school graduation.
MASSACHUSETTS: The Saugust School Committee voted this week to allow homeschooled students to participate in Saugus Public Schools athletics and extracurricular activities. What great news for those students!
SOUTH CAROLINA: The HSLDA is supporting bills S131 and H3202 which would provide curriculum grants for homeschool students.
THE NOT-REALLY NEWS:
TEXAS: Rice University researchers have published a STUDY saying that participation in team sports does not provide enough physical exercise for homeschooled students. The report indicates that this is mostly due to the down time during practices and around games because students aren’t actually moving the whole time. The researchers suggest that students need to spend at least an hour a day in actual physical movement to get in the recommended amount of exercise. But don’t feel picked on, homeschoolers. While the researchers were specifically studying homeschoolers, when asked, they say that public schoolers are no better. Their down time is about the same. All students need to try to get in a hour of movement daily. I’ve seen some articles using this study to say that homeschooling is not a good idea, but the researchers didn’t say that at all, so if someone brings this up to you, be armed with the facts.
- FLORIDA: Congratulations to the Heart Homeschool boys basketball team who defeated IMB in Bradenton last Thursday 47-38. Way to go, guys!
- IDAHO: Sandpoint Homeschool Academy students performed a traditional African dance and song at the Sandpoint High School Auditorium for Black History Month. How fabulous!
- MONTANA: Homeschooled student, Michael Lee, was the winner of this year’s Richland County spelling bee held at West Side Elementary School in Sidney on Saturday afternoon. Congratulations, Michael!
- MONTANA: This week the Flathead Valley Homeschool Girls defeated the Valley Christian School girls 46 to 36. Great job, girls!
Opportunities for Homeschoolers:
- ILLINOIS: Homeschoolers in Freeport have a wonderful opportunity to participate in the Youth Choir through the Fine Arts department at Highland Community College. This choir is open to students in 1st through 12th grade, and is free of charge, so if you’re a singer, please contact the college for more information.
- NEW YORK: Rochester and Henrietta area homeschoolers should check out the homeschool program at the Bowl-A-Roll on Jefferson Road. The program has been going strong for 15 years now, so they must be doing something right! For more information check their website: https://bowl-a-roll.com/
- GEORGIA: Milledgeville homeschoolers have a fabulous opportunity to study science hands-on with the Georgia College “Adopt-a-Creek” program. The program has been around for over 20 years!
- FLORIDA: The St. Lucie County Aquarium offers a 7-week immersive program on biodiversity for homeschoolers. Call the Aquarium for more information and to see when the next program begins.
- OHIO: Bufffington area Homeschoolers should check out the Homeschoolers Learning Library at 1 p.m., Bluffton Public Library, 145 S. Main St., Bluffton. Ages 4 to 11. Register at
- NORTH CAROLINA: The Randolph Arts Guild in Asheboro is now offering an opportunity for homeschool families to add an advanced, well-rounded art option to their educational curriculum.Located at the Randolph Arts Guild’s newly remodeled Arts Center, 123 Sunset Ave., Asheboro, the first 12-week Spring Session runs every Thursday from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. from Feb. 21-May 9.
- NORTH CAROLINA: The newly-formed Stokes County Homeschool Choir is taking new enrollees, so contact them now if you have an interested student. This choir is run by a former homeschooled student, so it’s a wonderful opportunity for singing homeschoolers in the area.
Have anything you’d like us to mention here? Comment below or on Facebook. Like our page or join our group! The links are on the right. >>