Is it legal? Am I qualified? Where do I start? Your basic questions answered here!
- The ability to individualize their course of study, adapting instruction to each child’s learning style and unique interests or needs
- The advantage of one-on-one teaching time
- Greater opportunity to guide the development of their children’s character, passing along cultural heritage and moral or religious values
- A flexible schedule allowing more time for children to learn at their own pace, more time for hands-on activities and field trips, and accommodating parent’s work and vacation schedule
- Opportunity to improve social skills through more contact with people of all ages including adults
First, what actually IS socialization? “Teaching children the rules of society” and “Learning how to mix appropriately with others” are two succinct definitions. That is what parents do naturally! But don’t children need to be around their age-mates in order to know how to get along with others?
“The idea that children need to be around many other youngsters in order to be ‘socialized’ is perhaps the most dangerous and extravagant myth in education and childrearing today. There is ample research that indicates that because home schooled students are exposed to a wider variety of people and situations, they learn to get along with a variety of people, making them socially mature and better able to adjust to new situations.” (Dr. Raymond Moore, in The Hurried Child)
Studies have shown that “home schooled children had consistently fewer behavioral problems…because they tend to imitate their parents while conventionally-schooled children model themselves after their peers.” (Dr. Larry Shyers, “Comparison of Social Adjustment Between Home and Traditionally Schooled Students” quoted in Home Schooling …the Right Choice by Chris Klika)
That being said, groups of home educators exist in every major city and in most smaller ones throughout California. Many homeschoolers are actively involved in a local group, enjoying field trips, science fairs, and other activities with their friends. Generally there will be students of varying ages participating together in these events. Co-op classes are available in many areas, and often these classes will be set up with a smaller grade range, more like a traditional classroom.
Beyond homeschool groups, most Christian home educators are actively involved in their church, specialized classes, clubs, local sports or other activities where children interact with other children and adults. Whether it is Little League or scouts, piano lessons or volunteering at a library, robotics club or science camp, homeschoolers typically are exceptionally good at finding outside activities that provide plenty of socialization opportunities!
Parents do not need to know everything in order to teach. The example and enthusiasm of the loving parent in learning along with their children will motivate and encourage them. Teachers’ manuals sold by many curriculum publishers usually offer a wealth of information to help teach the material. Support schools provide parents with various helps. A tutor may be retained if desired for particularly difficult subjects such as advanced math.
- The California Education Code does not specifically mention homeschooling; until about 2008, homeschooling wasn’t even recognized in California law at all! California’s home educators generally operate under the private school laws (Ed. Code 48222) or the state credentialed teacher exemption from public school (Ed. Code 48224).
- Some families choose to establish a private school in their own home, filing a private school affidavit with the State Department of Education and complying with the same rules and regulations for educating that apply to any other private school in California. Other families enroll in an Private school Satellite Program (PSP) that serves homeschooling families; this option may be offered by a brick-and-mortar private school or a private school that exclusively serves homeschoolers. Christian Heritage School would be considered a PSP in the latter category. [Some public schools in California operate under a charter and cater to homeschoolers, but these are still public schools, not private.]
- Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) exists to defend the parent’s right to educate their children at home. We highly encourage membership in HSLDA whether you join our school or not. As a benefit to CHS, please use the link at right to apply for a new membership.
- Family Protection Ministries (FPM)is the only full-time organization working in the state capitol monitoring all legislative and administrative actions and advocating in behalf of private home educators and parents. Please click on the link to their website at right as well as this FPM Fact Sheet to learn about their work and do what you can to support this critical ministry.
Private homeschools may be as small as one family teaching one student at home or as large as several hundred homeschooling families joining together for support and accountability under a Private School Satellite Program (PSP). In either case, a Private School Affidavit is filed with the state and they comply with the California Education Code sections that relate to private schools. Those sections do not mention homeschooling, however they do not exclude it either.
Click this for more general “getting started” information from Home School Legal Defense Association. http://www.youcanhomeschool.org/starthere/default.asp?bhcp=1
Click this to read ten “getting started” articles from The Teaching Home magazine (older but still good). http://theteachinghome.com/started/