I have four kids in the public school system. Although Florida has school choice with magnet and charter schools, they are all the same old public school philosophy that honestly makes me sick, and I am so tired of having my kids in these schools.
Homeschooling is not an option right now, other wise I would do it in a heartbeat.
I was really hoping to find a school choice alternative (free) that has a nice balance of relaxed, basic academics (the three r's) and freedom like sudbury.type schools.
I want a school that is free of homework, reading logs, and insulting "planners" that I need to sign to tell the teacher I'm an "involved" and responsible parent.
Apparently I'm asking for too much. I can't find anything, and we really can't afford private schools. No matter how we crunch the numbers, we have to eat too. Maybe there are actually affordable schools here for a family of 6 on one income?
have you looked at Learning Gate Community School? Very into the environment, the kids take nature walks, there is still homework planners and that sort of thing, but I think it may be the best alternative for you. Pasco County has a montessori charter school, not sure how it works if you live in Hillsborough. A new charter opened this year called "Channelside Academy" and I have a friend who loves it. They partnered with the aquarium and other downtown facilities (children's museum) to give the kids a broader experience. You won't find a school free of homework, it just won't happen, its too out of the mainstream, but I think you can find something better, but not perfect.
I understand your frustration. My kids go to private after a lot of number crunching, but I think you can find something you may be happier with.
Also, don't get offended with "insulting" planners, you may be involved, but there are others that are not and those are the people that those planners are geared towards. You can either take it with a grain of salt and not let it get to you, or you can take offense, its up to you.
Thank you! I saw learning gate before, I'll look into it again. I totally forgot that I even started this thread...I've been busy trying to communicate with my second grader's teacher (who never responded to my email) and figuring out how to handle the "note" I got from my Kindergartner's teacher about how homework is very important! Oh, and since my 6th grader didn't read enough at home, she got a "D" in reading. I got that call from her teacher while we were trying to shop for Halloween costumes.
Thanks for the ideas though...I'll look into them.
I did find some really awesome sounding public charter schools down by Cape Coral that specifically said they had a "No homework" policy. That was hopeful reading that....I just wish there were some up here.
If you are in Manatee, Charlotte, or Sarasota Counties there is a great charter Montessori school: www.islandvillage.org
If nothing else maybe they can help you find something similar in your area.
"Now bid me run, and I will strive with things impossible." (William Shakespeare -- Julius Caesar)
I know you said you can't afford private schools, but I am also in a family of 6 on one income and our older two children go here:
I hope that helps. We don't agree with everything they do, like show videos sometimes, but the rest is great and I love the faculty.
May God bless you and His Blessed Mother Mary keep you! :-)
A sudbury school in the Tampa area
and this is a link for scholarship information for private schools in FL