Monday, May 12, 2008
Homeschool Hi-Light: Evaluation complete!
My Homeschool Hi-Light for this week is easy:
We got our homeschool evaluation done!
Pennsylvania has a tough homeschooling law. One requirement is the evaluation, wherein a certified teacher reviews work the child has done throughout the school year, talks with the child about it, and reviews books/materials used. I'd heard horror stories about evaluators who were not homeschooling-friendly (why were they doing it, then?) so when we moved here I started looking for an evaluator right away.
She came to me via our homeschool group, of which she is a member. A former elementary teacher, she keeps up her credential as she homeschools her own kids.
It turned out to be a fun experience for my kids. First off, she is a very kind, gentle, soft-spoken soul - so unlike me. My kids enjoy her greatly. My daughter paid her a compliment: "she seems like the kind of person who will be interested in anything a kid does." And she was right.
Ms. Eval looked through the book lists we'd made and asked a few questions about books - and took some titles down for her own homeschool. She noted my daughter's standardized test scores and list of places we visited. She went through their portfolios (which have to be submitted to the school district) to see their work samples.
Then she handed me the forms that assure the school district that my kids have received an appropriate education.
Aaahhhh! My first evaluation, and I guess I passed. Now, I need to finish logging our 180 days - 10 days to go! - and be ready to submit our portfolio by June 30. I'll get a few more books listed before then. The school district could find something lacking in the portfolios, but I doubt it.
I must admit that the process wasn't as bad as I'd feared. Coming from Oregon, a very homeschool-friendly state with few requirements, I found Pennsylvania's law very daunting. Now I have confidence to carry on for the next "school year."
Finding new confidence is always a hilight for me! Go to Fun Learning for more.