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LEA vs an Umbrella School?


Forum: Homeschooling

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  #1  
May 21st, 2007, 01:53 PM
~hsingtreehouse~
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I am trying to do some research right now and determine whether or not I want to go with an umbrella school or go the LEA route. Immediately, I like the idea of the umbrella school! I want my son as uninvolved in this no child left behind, government regulated, state level crap as possible. However, being so green to homeschooling, I thought I would ask the experts. What do you all do?

The umbrella school I am thinking of using is called Gateway Christian Schools out of Memphis, TN.
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  #2  
May 21st, 2007, 01:55 PM
JustAKrazymom's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Again I am useless.... I have no idea about either. We don't have to use any such thing here so we don't!
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  #3  
May 21st, 2007, 02:09 PM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
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Location: San Antonio TX
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What is LEA? We just do it on our own and jump through the (easy enough) state hoops.
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  #4  
May 21st, 2007, 02:14 PM
~hsingtreehouse~
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LEA is local education agency. In our case, I would have to enroll them as a homeschooled child in our local school system OR use an umbrella school. If I enroll in the LEA, there are guidelines - 4 hours of homeschooling a day (which is great for upper grades, but Kindergarten?), also there are mandates on my own education and my husband's. We both have bachelors degrees (mine is in English, his is in Engineering) - and to homeschool above grade 8 in our state, you have to have a bachelors degree unless the board waives that on an individual basis or if the child is special needs. It is a bunch of hooplah here.
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  #5  
May 21st, 2007, 02:19 PM
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Wow, that's just...CRAZY. I knew there were states like that, but I'm suprised that TN is one of them. Weird.

I'd go the umbrella school route, given the choices. How much will an umbrella school cost you? Do you have to follow their curriculum or is it just a way to meet the requirement and they let you do whatever you want, pretty much?

ITA that 4 hours is TOO MUCH for kindergarten. We did about 45 minutes a day for half the school year and he's still done more this year than most kindergarteners do in their entire year of K.
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  #6  
May 21st, 2007, 02:39 PM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
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I'd go with doing the LEA. Your state is pretty easy from the sound of it. You just have to think in terms of the minimum possible. Four hours a day is perfectly reasonable for a kindergarten age child. After all, they are doing so much exploring of their world that it would make sense to me that they spend much more than four hours a day learning something. So the hours of school are taken care of easily without even needing to keep track. You already have the degree requirement. No problem there. The notice of intent is no biggie and the occasional standardized testing is a pretty simple hoop to jump through. I'd not bother with an umbrella school. The law is easy enough to comply with on your own.
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~Heather, wife to Jamie (15 years; June 5, 1998) and mom to
Ani - 14 (February 15, 2000), Cameron - 12 (October 3, 2001),
Fritz - 7 (July 11, 2006), and Adrian - 5 (June 19, 2008)
Smaller on the Outside

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  #7  
May 21st, 2007, 02:51 PM
~hsingtreehouse~
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I am not sure about the curriculum thing, but when I called the Gateway school to get a packet of information, they said that all I had to do was "enroll the children, BUY the curriculum..." I just wonder if they meant buy their curriculum, or purchase my own or what? The woman who referred me to them said she has used the Abecka in the past, so she gave me no indication that she was using the Gateway schools curriculum. HMMMM??? Now I am confused!
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  #8  
May 21st, 2007, 03:46 PM
joandsarah77's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Well I would stay far away from this LEA. I actualy belong to an Umbrella school in TN! It is the cheapest, easiest way to go. Gateway I am not so sure of. I looked at a lot of umbrellas and needed one that would take internationals, that was cheap and didn't interfere. HomeLife Acadamy was perfect. Here is the link http://www.homelifeacademy.com/index.php It's wonderful. They only require you keep atendence 180 days and submit grades twice a year. Grades does not mean a test they simply ask you to decide how you think your childs progressing. Attendence can be anything from formal lessons to life learning.
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  #9  
May 21st, 2007, 10:13 PM
MissyPrincessEha's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I just wanted to add that I would be leary of an umbrella that made me use a set curriculum. Check into that and also look into Jo's link. What if you get into it and say it is abeka and you HATE it? If you use abeka the way it says you will burn out. I think I can say that with authority. We have used abeka for Kinger-2nd. We love it now that we let go and added and took away to suit us. If I had to turn in stuff to pensacola christian I would go insane meeting all of the requirements. Just a thought....
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  #10  
May 22nd, 2007, 06:20 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: San Antonio TX
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In TN LEA appears to just be their term for the school system people that you deal with. It's no different from all the states that have you send in a notice of intent to the superintendent of schools. Really, I'd go with the LEA option. Cheaper and just as easy. TN is not a difficult state to homeschool in (though, like happens in MD, I'm sure the umbrella schools will tell you it is!).
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~Heather, wife to Jamie (15 years; June 5, 1998) and mom to
Ani - 14 (February 15, 2000), Cameron - 12 (October 3, 2001),
Fritz - 7 (July 11, 2006), and Adrian - 5 (June 19, 2008)
Smaller on the Outside

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  #11  
May 22nd, 2007, 02:29 PM
joandsarah77's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Thats true that some umbrellas might be there just to make money but I don't believe that HomeLife Acadamy is like that. They are Christian homeschoolers who are offering a service.
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