The first day of school for West Michigan students looked different for everyone this year. Some districts allowed children back into the classroom, while others were forced to make the decision of hybrid or online, virtual learning. Diane Hehman is the owner of Homeschool Help, Making Your Journey Your Own.
As fall school plans remain uncertain, local homeschooling organizations are reporting a growing number of new, interested families. “We have seen quite an uptick,” said Bill Heuer, executive director of the Massachusetts Home Learning Association. The latest available data shows around 7,600 students are homeschooled in Massachusetts and 1,800 students in Rhode Island; both, less than one percent of the entire student population.
Distance learning was the new normal this past spring semester because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but learning from home has pushed more parents to keep their kids at home. Schooling during the quarantine looked a lot different: Papers, books, and technology spread across a kitchen table, mingled with the ins and out of everybody home 24/7.
In January, when history professor Karen Miller first arrived in Manila, the Philippines, she expected to spend several months studying internal migration patterns in the Southeast Asian country. As a Fulbright Scholar on sabbatical from her job at LaGuardia Community College, she quickly enrolled her eleven-year-old son in an elementary school program and began to settle in.
Like the parents of public or private school kids, parents who homeschool also have to adjust to shelter-in-place orders because for some, homeschool doesn’t mean you are at home all of the time.