I never planned to homeschool my children. When my youngest was just two days old, we moved into a lovely neighborhood in an award-winning school district of New York’s Capital Region. The elementary school looked like something out of a Normal Rockwell illustration of a bygone America, and when my children entered the school, it proved to be just as welcoming and community-driven as I had imagined.
The public school was great, but it wasn’t a good fit for my children. We tried. Both kids attended the elementary school for several years, and my daughter went all the way. But when she transitioned into middle school, we sent her to a private school and gave homeshooling a whirl with my son.
We had a good run, homeschooling Alex from 2nd-5th Grade. It’s over now. For middle school, my son insisted on following his sister to the small, alternative private school.
That’s alright. It was wonderful while it lasted, and the entire family has benefited from this experience. Alex is becoming a confident, engaged life-long learner who has had the opportunity to explore interests without limitations. His transition into traditional schooling was easy, and midyear reports were uniformly glowing. I was particularly pleased with the number of adults who described my son as a very polite young man.
We must have done something right.
On The Journey Mom, I kept a journal of our homeschool adventures, as well as a record of all the documents that we were required to file to homeschool in our school district. New York homeschool regulations are extensive and very demanding, but there is still much room for individual interpretation. I’ve posted our documents so that readers can see how we did it, but please bear in mind that the beauty of homeschooling is that you CAN do it your own way.
Read the Warning Label! This by no means is the only way to home school in New York, and be aware that due to the “fuzziness” of the language, some of the requirements are open to interpretation. When in doubt, refer to Section 100.10 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education. You may also want to refer to New York State Education Department’s General Q& A and/or Core Curriculum Guidance.
I also highly recommend the New York Home Educators’ Network Yahoo Group, where you will get prompt answers and support from long-time homeschoolers around the state in most (if not all) school districts.
And if you’d like to hear what my son has to say about his learning adventures, visit his Alex and Leperdy blog.
My Home School Library:
Discover The Well Trained Mind, core curriculum for a Classical Education, in Is It a Book Review or Affiliate Marketing?