VIRTUAL CHARTER SCHOOLS

Our Stance on Virtual Charter Schools

 

Charter schools are created by the public school systems in order to use government funds to

provide “free” enticements to families such as computers, internet access, books, etc. When

enrolling in the public school system, in any form, parents are signing away much of their

parental rights to direct their child’s education. Even when involved in a home-based charter

school program, parents are accepting government money and signing over ultimate

educational control of their children to the state. Enrolling in a home-based charter school

creates a little public school within your home. As a home school support group, CHOICE

encourages parents to independently teach their children at home - free from government

intervention through independent, private home schooling.

 

All public schools, including home-based charter schools, are funded based on attendance:

The higher the student enrollment, the more money that is received. When a homeschooler

enrolls in a home-based charter school program, that school usually receives the same

amount of funds for the student as if the child were attending the local public school. The

difference is that the home-based charter school does not have to provide teachers,

classrooms, and all the other related expenses of an on-site program.

 

When public schools receive money from the government, the state must hold recipients of

taxpayer dollars accountable for how they use the funds. This opens a door to increased

“accountability checks” and requirements. Ultimately, as these requirements grow, they will

squelch some of the greatest benefits of home education that so many have fought for- like

having the flexibility to accommodate each child’s strengths, weaknesses, learning style, and

interests.

 

CHOICE believes there should be less control and interference with parents’ rights to direct

the education of their own children. Private homeschoolers have demonstrated that state

funding and regulation are not necessary to achieve academic excellence.

 

Many states already prohibit public schools and public school-funded programs from using

Christian-based materials. Because these programs are funded by tax dollars, parents who

enroll their students in the public charter school programs have to abide by the public school

policy and may not use any Christian curriculum, nor will credit be given for religious-based

courses.

 

In accordance with the SC Home Education Law, there are three options to legally home

school in the state. Option 1- accountability to the school district (This is completely different

than the charter school option.); Option 2- Membership and compliance with the standards of

South Carolina Association of Independent Home Schools (SCHAIS); Option 3- membership

to a home school accountability association (such as HOPE). For these reasons, CHOICE

takes the position that charter schools do not fall under the SC Homeschool Law and are not

a legal option for homeschooling in our state. We only support and accept for membership

those families who are in compliance with the SC Homeschool Law. Anyone using the

Virtual Charter School program, offered by the public school system, within their home

is NOT eligible for membership in CHOICE.

 

CHOICE desires for every homeschooling family to be informed - know your U.S. and state

constitutional rights, read and understand the SC home schooling law, what is required and

what is considered compliance with the law, and carefully consider the implications of a

decision to enroll in a home-based charter school.