November 28, 2005

Homeschooling or Public School at Home Pt. II

Please read my first post on this subject.

The distinction becomes clearer and clearer to me and the following Q and A I had via email with the office manager of the Minnesota Virtual Academy should make it clear to others. I sent the following questions and received these answers, I have posted it verbatim (emphasis in bold is mine)

1. Can you please outline for me who funds your program? Is it state funded, district funded, grant funded, etc? I am referring to the mnva. What are my financial responsibilities as a parent?

As a parent open enrolling 100% to Houston Public schools you would not have a financial responsibility. We are state funded like any other public school student. We would supply the curriculum and a computer for you to use for as long as you are in the Academy. Upon withdraw, we would pick the computer up and you would be send labels to send the curriculum back to K12.

2. Are students required to take all the same tests as their public school counterparts? Any additional exams?

Since we are a public school, your child would be required to take any state testing that is required for a public school. For us, it would be the MCA's (Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments) and the NWEA's (Northwestern Educational Assessments).

3. If enrolled in MNVA is my child legally considered a public school (charter school) student or is she a homeschooler?

Your child would be considered 100% open enrolled to Houston as a public school student. This would mean that if the child would want to enroll with us and still take classes (band, music) at the resident district they would not be able to since they are 100% enrolled with us.

The legal distinction is clear - even the MNVA agrees. Keeping the legal distinction is important. Remember to keep the focus on protecting your rights to homeschool outside of the school district instead of on the negatives of charter schools.

Charter schools such as the MNVA have many benefits. They just need to remain classified in the public school system not as homeschoolers. Remember it is a question of authority not a question of curriculum choice.


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