Welcome to the Kokomo Area Schools at Home Website!
KASH is a Christian organization with Christian leadership. KASH is here to provide information to ALL families interested in home education, to provide communication among homeschoolers in the area, and to organize specific activities for homeschoolers.
The Indiana Association of Home Educators (IAHE) has a number of how-to books covering how to set up your school, determining a student's strengths/needs, choosing curriculum, etc. Click on "Resources" on their web site: www.inhomeeducators.org. A large number of helpful articles can be found by clicking on "Articles." The following list is gleaned from those articles, plus input from local veteran home schoolers.
1. Pray/read Scripture before you commit to home schooling. Clarify your vision and goals, what your family issues and needs are. Write it out so you can refer to it on difficult days and when explaining to others why you are home schooling.
2. Talk with other home schoolers. Contact KASH leaders and/or others who are experienced, so you can get an idea of what this lifestyle is like, curriculum suggestions, etc.
3. Make a firm commitment. This is not something you can "try for a few weeks." You must have determination to ride out the inevitable storms.
4. Home schooling is a lifestyle - be prepared for every aspect of your life to be impacted. Right at first, cut back activities until you are established in your routines and everyone has adjusted.
5. Research curriculum and methods. Recognize that there is no "one-size-fits-all" program (even though the schools keep trying that approach). Talk to others and see what works for them and why, so you can determine better what might work for you. Look at The Big Book of Home Learning for reviews of your choices. If you later find that your choice didn't work -- relax, sell it and try something new - after all, you are in charge! One more point -- try your best to order books in plenty of time - or you may have to start your school year with fill-in material from the teacher store!
6. Lesson plans. If you choose a curriculum with plans, great - just remember you don't actually have to do everything they think you should! Otherwise, divide your texts into the number of weeks you want to spend and write some general long-term plans (in pencil!). Some families write weekly charts of assignments for all subjects so their students can see at a glance what all they need to get done each week, and can check things off as they finish.
7. Be aware of the law. Home schools are considered a private school in the state of Indiana. You are required to keep a record of attendance for 180 days. You are required to provide an education in the English language and an education that is equivalent to the public schools, but an equivalent education is not defined or quantified. It is a good idea to join Home School Legal Defense, especially if you think you may have trouble with truant officers or family members who oppose your decision.
8. If applicable, notify the school. If you are removing your children from school, notify the school in writing that you are transferring enrollment elsewhere, request a copy of the permanent record, and send it certified mail. You are not legally required to register with the state.
9. Understand and establish that you are the boss. One of our veterans, Cheryl Clawson, used to tell newcomers that, "If you can't control your kids, home schooling is not for you." What you say, goes. It is not up for discussion or negotiation. If you find out you were wrong, admit it, apologize, and go on. Shoot for this standard: If you say it is due, have the student finish it, cheerfully. It is a big pain to be tough, but it is a crucial life skill to know how to follow instructions without arguing - something your children will need in the "real" world.
10. Establish a routine. Set up a place and a schedule. Most students do better with some structure, but remember one of the beauties of home schooling is the ability to be flexible and really meet the needs of our children.
11. Find a buddy. Look for someone who can encourage you when the going gets tough. S/he can remind you of your goals when you started, can tell you you will survive and your children will not be ruined. If you have no church friend, go to KASH events and meet people! And you can always call one of the leadership committee for moral support.
12. Everyone has bad times. Don't be fooled - all of us have had our kids wake up brain-dead some days. It's normal. Call your buddy, take a field trip, change the lesson plan, and be glad you don't have 20 all brain-dead together! Susan Firebaugh, another veteran, thought her son would "never learn to read," then she stopped pushing it and a few weeks later he was reading on his own.
13. Remember that character is far more important than academic achievement. Contrary to public school doctrine, we don't need many rocket scientists, but we do need millions of honest bank tellers, loving mothers, and faithful husbands. If we allow our kids to be lazy, argumentative, or unkind (pick a bad character trait here), they will become a weight on the Kingdom of God and not lights to change our world. Once you have obedient, kind, helpful children, they can catch up on academic stuff in a jiffy, because they will have the discipline to do it well and quickly.
14. Rome wasn't built in a day. Child training is a long-haul proposition. Be patient with both yourself and your kids. Also, remember that you can't ruin your students in one year of muddling and adjusting!
15. "What about socialization?" This is a non-issue. Renita Coonrod, one of our veteran moms, has said, "How many times in your life have you needed the skill of working with 20 people your exact same age?" As long as your kids get regular exposure to others at church, clubs, etc., they will be fine. The current fad of constantly being in an active crowd is abnormal - think about how most people stayed home all the time through most of our history. Also, by being home your children are not being socialized in all the cruelty, worldliness and filth that others may bring to school!
ADDITIONAL ORGANIZATIONAL TIPS
With credits to Mary Carney, a frequent speaker at the Indiana Home Educator's Convention. Her article, "But How Will I Ever Get It All Done?" is found on the IAHE website under Articles.
• Spend the first week of the school year on "Home Ec.," during which you reorganize your home in preparation for the school year. Stay home, eat off paper plates, and clean, cook, sort, de-junk and catch up on the little jobs that never got done.
• Simplify breakfast and lunch routines. You can write a weekly menu, or provide self-serve items that children can do alone from about age 4 on.
• Cooking day. Set up days to cook quadruple quantities of a few favorite meals, freeze them, and use them for the next couple of weeks.
• Make a date. Take regular time out with your spouse - keeps the family grounded and your vision fresh.
• Hesitate to do outside activities. " saying "yes" to an activity means saying "no" to something else." Say no when it is appropriate. Your kids do not need to do everything to be well-rounded.
• Teach the kids a new chore each month - train, delegate, then follow up.
• Prepare for each day the night before. Take ten minutes to get set up for an easy start.
• Set a schedule for waking, sleeping, and meals.
• Reduce computer and TV time.
The Home School Foundation is a non-profit charity organization that seeks to meet various needs within the home school community.www.homeschoolfoundation.org.
The Home School Legal Defense Association web site offers excellent resources to those looking for research on home schooling, laws affecting home schooling throughout the nation and much, much more! www.hslda.org
The Indiana Department of Education has a web site on which you can find the latest laws and information affecting home schooling families in Indiana. ideanet.doe.state.in.us/
Indiana Association of Home Educators - a non-profit organization founded in 1983 for the purpose of serving the Lord Jesus Christ by supporting and encouraging families interested in home education. www.inhomeeducators.org
The Indiana Foundation for Home Schooling - informative website to help Indiana homeschoolers with getting started information through college prep help. www.IndianaHomeSchooling.org.
The Indiana Home Educators' Network - an organization dedicated to Helping Hoosiers Homeschool.www.ihen.org.
Roman Catholic Home Educators of Indiana (RCHEI) RCHEI's goal is to be a resource network for Catholic home education in the state of Indiana. www.rchei.org
Summit - an educational ministry challenging teens to stand strong in their faith and defend truth. www.summit.org
Curriculum - Textbooks (these are just a few of the big sources):
A Beka Books - Major publisher of Christian textbooks often used in schools. DVD classes available. www.abeka.com.
Alpha Omega Publications - Basic Christian text books, PACES curriculum. www.aop.com.
Apologia - Science texts which are popular with many local families. www.Apologia
Bob Jones University Press - Major printer of Christian textbooks often used in schools. Satellite, DVD and
correspondence classes are available. www.bjup.com.
Catholic Heritage Curricula - Major supplier of home school resources. www.chcweb.com
Christian Book Distributors - Bookstore with many texts available. www.christianbook.com
Christian Liberty Press - Basic texts, correspondence school available. www.ChristianLibertyPress.com and
Cornerstone Curriculum - Math, art and world view programs. www.cornerstonecurriculum.com
Rod and Staff - Texts from a conservative, Anabaptist (Mennonite) viewpoint. www.RodStaff.com.
Seton Books - Largest source for Catholic textbooks. www.SetonBooks.com
Non-text or unit study:
Sonlight - Literature-based program with history as the focal point. Excellent reading lists. www. Sonlight.com.
Konos - Unit-study program with lots of activities. www.Konos.com.
Mother of Divine Grace School - Independent study program, helps parents design their own curriculum.
Tapestry of Grace - Classical based, unit studies, designed for multi-grade teaching. www.tapestryofgrace.com
Books that evaluate curricula (available at the IAHE web site):
Cathy Duffy, Christian Home Educator's Curriculum Manual - brief commentaries/descriptions of many curricula.
Joyce Hertzog, Choosing and Using Curriculum
Mary Pride, The Big Book of Home Learning, 4 volumes - the most comprehensive "consumer guide" and advice book.
The library should have it.
Books on home schooling as a concept:
The Christian Home School, by Greg Harris - Makes the case for home schooling, with suggestions/guidelines.
Home Grown Kids, by Raymond and Dorothy Moore - Begins with infancy and pre-school.
The How and Why of home Schooling, by Ray E. Ballmann - Biblical reasons for home schooling with practical guidelines.
A Survivor's Guide to Home Schooling, by Luanne Shackelford and Susan White - two veteran moms give practical and
You Can Teach Your Child Successfully (grades 4-8), The Three-R's Series: A Strong Start in Language, A Home Start in Reading, and An Easy Start in Arithmetic (P-gr. 3), by Ruth Beechick - very practical, encouraging, old classic helps.
The Right Choice - Home Schooling, by Chris Klicka - a comprehensive review, with history, effectiveness, Biblical
How to Home School: A Practical Approach, by Gayle Graham - a manual for planning and organizing your school.
LEGAL INFORMATION FOR HOME SCHOOLING
We in Indiana are blessed to have laws that allow us to home educate our children. The law requires that our children be in school from 7-17 years of age and that they attend school for 180 days each year. It is highly recommended that you join the Home School Legal Defense Association. Legal problems in Indiana are infrequent, but membership in HSLDA insures proper legal counsel if necessary.
Compulsory Attendance Ages: "earlier of the date on which the student officially enrolls in a school or, except as provided in section 8 of this chapter, the beginning of the fall school term for the school year in which the student becomes seven (7) years of age until the date on which the student:
(2) becomes eighteen (18) years of age; or
(3) becomes sixteen (16) years of age but is less than eighteen (18) years of age and the requirements under section 9 of this chapter concerning an exit interview are met enabling the student to withdraw from school before graduation; whichever occurs first." IC 20-33-2-6
Required Days of Attendance: "for the number of days public schools are in session:
(1) in the school corporation in which the student is enrolled in Indiana; or where the student is enrolled if the student is enrolled outside Indiana." (generally, 180 days) IC 20-33-2-5
Required Subjects: "instruction equivalent to that given in public schools." IC 20-33-2-28
"A school that is:
(2) nonaccredited; and
(3) not otherwise approved by the state board;
is not bound by any requirements set forth in IC 20 or IC21 with regard to curriculum or the content of educational programs offered by the school." IC 20-33-2-12
Home School Statutes: None
Alternative Statutes Allowing for Home Schools: A child may attend "another school taught in the English language." IC 20-33-2-4
1. The child must be "provided with instruction equivalent to that given in public schools.: IC 20-33-2-28
However, IC 20-33-2-12 has removed all subject requirements (see above). Furthermore, the Indiana Department of Education has not been given the authority to define "equivalent instruction," nor to approve home schools.
2. The Indiana Appellate Court has held that the Indiana compulsory attendance law allows the operation of homeschools. State v. Peterman, 32 Ind. App. 665, 70 N.E. 550 (1904) Essentially, the court said a school at home is a private school.
The court defined a school as "a place where instruction is imparted to the young" We do not think that the number of persons, whether one or many, make a place where instruction is imparted any less or more a school." Peterman,70 NE at 551. The court explained further: "Under a law very similar to ours, the Supreme Court of Massachusetts has held that the object and purpose of a compulsory educational law are that all the children shall be educated, not that they shall be educated in any particular way." Peterman, at 551.
The court concluded: "The result to be obtained, and not the means or manner of attaining it, was the goal which the lawmakers were attempting to reach. The law (compulsory attendance) was made for the parent who does not educate his child, and not for the parent who so places within the reach of the child the opportunity and means of acquiring an education equal to that obtainable in the public schools" Peterman, at 552.
3. In Mazanec v. North Judson-San Pierre School Corporation, 614 F. Supp. 1152 (N.D. Ind. 1985) (affd. By 798 F. 2nd 230), a federal district court recognized that parents have the constitutional right to educate their children in a home environment (at page 1160). The court wrote concerning the qualifications of home school parents that "it is now doubtful that the requirements of a formally licensed or certified teacher would pass constitutional muster." (at page 1160) On appeal, the circuit court ruled that a school corporation is not immune from a 1983 action for improper enforcement of compulsory attendance.
4. Parents must keep attendance records "solely to verify the enrollment and attendance of a student upon request of the: 1) state superintendent; or (2) superintendent of the school corporation in which the nonpublic school is located." IC 20-33-2-20
5. "Each principal or school administrator in a nonpublic school that is attended by a student who is subject to the compulsory school attendance law under this chapter shall furnish, on request of the state superintendent, the number of students by grade level attending the school." IC 20-33-2-21
Teacher Qualifications: None
Standardized Tests: Not required by statute.
This analysis does not constitute the giving of legal advice. Source: Home School Legal Defense Association
Call or write to receive a free copy of HSLDA's newsletter and membership application.
Home School Legal Defense Association, PO Box 3000, Purcellville, VA 20134
Phone: 540-338-5600 • Fax: 540-338-2733 • Website: www.hslda.org
Homeschooling Legally in Indiana
Home School Legal Defense Association is a nonprofit advocacy organization established to defend and advance the constitutional right of parents to direct the education of their children and to protect family freedoms. Through annual memberships, HSLDA is tens of thousands of families united in service together, providing a strong voice when and where needed.
HSLDA advocates on the legal front by fully representing member families at every stage of proceedings. Each year, thousands of member families receive legal consultation by letter and phone, hundreds more are represented through negotiations with local officials, and dozens are represented in court proceedings. HSLDA also takes the offensive, filing actions to protect members against government intrusion and to establish legal precedent. On occasion, HSLDA will handle precedent-setting cases for nonmembers, as well.
HSLDA advocates on Capitol Hill by tracking federal legislation that affects homeschooling and parental rights. HSLDA works to defeat or amend harmful bills, but also works proactively, introducing legislation to protect and preserve family freedoms.
HSLDA advocates in state legislatures, at the invitation of state homeschool organizations, by assisting individual states in drafting language to improve their homeschool legal environment and to fight harmful legislation.
HSLDA advocates in the media by presenting articulate and knowledgeable spokesmen to the press on the subject of homeschooling. HSLDA staff members are regularly called upon for radio, television, and print interviews, and their writings are frequently published in newspapers and magazines across the country. HSLDA's own bimonthly magazine, The Home School Court Report, provides news and commentary on a host of current issues affecting homeschoolers. And its two-minute daily radio broadcast, Home School Heartbeat, can be heard on nearly 500 radio stations.
HSLDA advocates for the movement by commissioning and presenting quality research on the progress of homeschooling. Whether it's in print, from the podium, or on the air, HSLDA provides insightful vision and leadership for the cause of homeschooling.
Home School Legal Defense Association . . . tens of thousands of American families working through more than 50 dedicated staff members to preserve each other's right to homeschool together, Advocates for Family & Freedom.
For more information visit HSLDA by clicking here HSLDA .