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Advice for parents interested in home schooling their children this year

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Posted at 6:46 AM, Jul 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-28 08:51:35-04

KALISPELL — The Montana Coalition of Home School Educators reports that last year 5,700 students grades K-12 were homeschooled in the Treasure State.

Steve White, legislative liaison for the coalition, told MTN News that parents need to do their research before they commit to homeschooling this year.

He says he anticipates this year will be challenging with many parents expressing interest in homeschooling their children because of COVID-19 fears.

White told MTN News that every parent who wants to home school their child needs to notify their county's superintendent of schools of that choice -- not the school's superintendent.

He also advised that it's better to start researching your homeschooling options now, explaining that looking to start homeschooling your child in the fall is too late.

He stressed, whatever is the best option for your child, whether that's homeschooling or public school is the course families should take because it's a huge commitment.

"If you're thinking about homeschooling, (you need) to do your homework. And the summer is time to do it," explained White. "There have been times where I get a phone call in October and the parent is angry at the school for some reason. And they'll say 'my son or daughter isn't being treated right, they're not getting along with the teacher. I'm taking them out and I'm going to home school them.' Ok, well then, are you going to quit your job?"

White suggests that parents who are thinking about homeschooling this year should reach out to other homeschooling families in their area.

There are tons of Facebook groups and ways to connect with families who home school in your area. Many of those families have curriculum and resources they can share with you.

If you'd like more information on homeschooling in the state of Montana please visit the Montana Coalition of Home Educator's website.

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