A visit to www.mothering.com ‘s online community found a mother stating that she’d read a “bunch of books” stating the reasons why a parent should homeschool, but didn’t know how to go about it. If you are homeschooling for the first time or retooling your technique, the whole prospect can feel overwhelming. Here is some background information and online resources you can utilize to feel a little more grounded.
www.heav.org is the Homeschoolers Association of Virginia. The site is comprehensive with a wealth of information including: How to begin homeschooling, curriculum suggestions and resources, gifted education, special needs education, preschool and more. The site also covers Virginia law as it applies to homeschool education and requirements for parents who decide to teach. When considering homeschooling your children Virginia Law speaks to the qualifications and requirements of parents/tutors to instruct students as well as whether or not children will be mandated to complete standardized testing. It is necessary that parents contact the superintendent of their district of their intent. The site also has lighter topics like support groups, resources and information about their annual convention. Parents/Educators can sign up to receive newsletters and updates on legal requirements for homeschooling as they change and are updated.
The Organization of Virginia Homeschoolers (http://vahomeschoolers.org ) is another valuable resource. Although not as clearly laid out as HEAV’s website, there is a blog and a Facebook fan page that allows you to stay updated on upcoming events and conferences. This website also discusses legal requirements for homeschooling, provides information about their annual conference, and information about homeschooling groups.
Beyond websites there are also online groups available for support. For less technologically savvy parents, yahoo groups and similar online groups, allow members to post information considered relevant to all members of the group. If you are sincerely interested in the focus of the group it can be a great resource, if not your email box may end up inundated with information you may not find greatly useful. If the latter occurs you can always unsubscribe. A yahoo group created to support Richmond area homeschoolers is http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Richmond_Area_Homeschoolers . Visit, subscribe and prepare to share information that could help you develop curriculum, play groups, parent support groups and more.
If you are now better aware of how, revisit later to discover the varied reasons why many parents in Virginia decide to homeschool.