Friday, March 28, 2008


Well, that time of year has arrived when plans have to be made for the next school year. I have to admit that before Annie reached "school age" I never realized how many decisions would have to be made about the kids' educations. And even if I had known, I don't think I would have guessed how agonizing all these decisions would be. What's best for one child might not be what's best for another. And what's best for a child at one point in life, might not be what's best at another time.

Anyway, I suppose the biggest decisions have been made. Annie will remain at home. Gray will go to public school (at least until we see how things go there). And Max will go to public school.

But a few decisions remain in regards to Annie. First of all, should we stick with the September through June school schedule, or switch to a year-round schedule. We're leaning towards the year-round schedule...we figure that that would allow for all the things she does during the summer to "officially" count.

And secondly, and more importantly, do we skip 6th grade and move her right to 7th? Because of the way the regulations work here, we're going to have to skip some grades eventually. Otherwise she'll finish with community college and then be stuck in limbo waiting to finish high school. But is now the time to skip? We're familiar with the "subject requirements" for 6th grade, as they are the same as for 5th. But they change for 7th and 8th grades, so we would have to familiarize ourselves with the changes. Mostly, I suppose I worry that if we do skip 6th grade, something will come up that I hadn't considered, and then it will be too late to do anything about it. I know...idiotic to think that way, but my brain doesn't always do what I tell it to.

Anyway, just wanted to get those thoughts out of my system. Hopefully, the next post will be a more cheerfully learning type entry. :)


Jean said...

Why would she have to finish high school if she's gone through the community college? Colleges, even competitive ones, would likely not "require" her to have a high school diploma if she had done a comprehensive program of study at a community college, especially if that program had yielded an associate's degree. Of course, there are issued in sending someone off to college at an early age. Don was rejected by one that had told him at the interview stage that they had real issues about putting a 15-year-old into a dorm, that as a day student they would take him in a minute, but the dorm was the issue. As it turned out, he lived in the dorm here even though UVa said they would waive the dorm requirement because of his age. Anyway, my whole point is that I wouldn't take high school as a given. If she can succeed at the community college, think beyond high school. There are kids here who use community college to fulfill high school requirements their final two years. Would New York allow that? Do we need to do some brainstorming here?

And if you ever want to seriously look into PEG at Mary Baldwin College, well, it's not much more than 45 minutes door-to-door from me. If our Don had been a Donna, that's where he would have gone instead of high school.

Dewey said...

So it sounds like you live in a state that has a lot of rules for homeschoolers. When we homeschooled, we were fortunately in a state that had NO regulations at all. I mean, fortunately for us. Not fortunately for my former student, who was taken out of school to homeschool, and it turned out she was really just babysitting full time for people from her weird, creepy church. If you could really call it a church. Anyway! So all we had to do was write a note to the school saying we were going to homeschool, and that's it! Sometimes you'd see homeschooled kids starting college at 13 or so.

But Jean has a point; a lot of the best colleges are actively recruiting homeschooled kids now. In my current state (different from the one I homeschooled in) I know a guy who homeschooled until he was 14, got National Merit Scholar status on his PSAT, and is now, at 18, graduating from college, with PILES of job and grad school offers!

Debi said...

Who knows if Annie will even be going off to college early at this point...but as there is that chance (she's taking her first course at the community college in the fall), we're trying to cover our bases. Unfortunately, New York has this bizarre "preliminary education requirement" which one must meet before getting a college degree in New York. To meet this, you must have a high school diploma, a GED, or a letter from the superintendent of your district stating that you completed a high school education. For homeschoolers, the diploma is out. And to get a letter from the superintendent, you have to have filed all your high school paperwork (an individualized home instruction plan plus four quarterly reports for each of four years). There is the GED option, but it's not even guaranteed that you can get a waiver to take it before 17. Anyway, it seems to the opinion of most (including the admission officer we've been talking to at the community college), that if there's even a slight chance that she might finish up two years of community college by 15 or 16, we really should just skip her right now so the superintendent will get his four years of high school paperwork before then.
I have no idea if my explanation made any sense at all there. New York, along with Pennsylvania, are supposedly the most heavily regulated when it comes to homeschooling. And I'm sure I'm not the most eloquent when it comes to trying to explain them.