Would you move to a more HS friendly state? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 14 Old 06-28-2010, 11:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We currently live in Philadelphia. I've only spoken with one parent. She suggested Charter Schools, but told me she had looked into homeschooling and the REFUSED to give her the paper work, saying that they would lose funding if they did. I really didn't get into how what they did was SO illegal, because she seemed so happy with her kids current education.

So I'm thinking PA already not being a 'friendly' state and philly going through unconventional routes already to discourage it, we may move.

Thing is life would be easier work wise for DH if we stayed in PA.

Have you ever moved to a different state just to avoid HS regulations? Do you think its enough of a reason to move? We would like to unschool and standardized testing makes me nervous (not for myself but what if they try to force us to learn what they want us to learn, when they want us to rather than life)

Basically What would you do? or what have you done?

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#2 of 14 Old 06-28-2010, 12:17 PM
 
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We simply lucked out into living in a very homeschool friendly state... Michigan. I've been homeschooling for ten years and never had to jump through a single hoop. No notification, no testing, no oversight... nothing.

But if this state became less homeschool friendly, would we move? No. Hubby's career is here and it is not easily transferable. Would I recommend that someone move here? If you can bring your own job with you, sure. Our economy is really tough right now and has been for years.

Good luck to you!

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#3 of 14 Old 06-28-2010, 12:34 PM
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The first family we met outside of those in a small fundemental church were orginally from PA and they chose to move to GA because of the homeschool laws here.
While the chance is slim that we would ever move out of state, if we were considering moving homeschool laws would play an important part in our decision.
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#4 of 14 Old 06-28-2010, 03:32 PM
 
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We just moved back to PA after 5 years in NC. One thing I was NOT thrilled about was the HS laws, which I was well aware of before the move. On the bright side, we have a while until we need to report (DS is 6), but yeah, I'm not fond of the laws here. In Philly proper it is tougher with the mandatory attendance being age 6 vs. 8 elsewhere in the state.

It seems like the laws here are workable but you really just need to be familiar with the law. Find an USing friendly evaluator (HS support groups online and IRL can help you wit this). I believe test scores alone aren't enough for them to compel you to put your child in school...the wording is something like sustained progress in the "overall program" must be made. Pretty tough for them to prove that isn't happening.

But yeah, I feel for you. I'm hoping we can keep advocating and moving forward and working on getting things changed here in the years to come.

It seems like Philadelphia's school system has been making some potentially extra-legal requests in recent years (was reading they were sending out letters this year about having to hand in the ports a certain week in June, not just by the end of June, and the letter mentioned meeting w/ the superint. which seems kinda questionable from a legal standpoint. I'm hoping that gets challenged from a legal standpoint.

If you could do Jersey (but still near Philadelphia) things would be much easier as an USer, but then you have the issue of taxes, etc. often being higher IME.

eta: have you checked out the askpauline site? Google that for some great tips on HSing in PA. There are also several yahoo groups (including one for USing in PA) if you aren't aware of that already.
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#5 of 14 Old 06-28-2010, 05:29 PM
 
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no. we live where we live based on Dh's job. we go where we are sent. we make requests based on what is open and porfessioally advantagaous.

DO I look at homeschool laws, yes, but it is not a factor. Homeschooling IS legal in all 50 states, more of a PITA in some, yes, but legal and can be done.

no we would not move simply due to homeschool laws and even when we do move the laws really are not a deciding factor for us.

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#6 of 14 Old 06-28-2010, 05:41 PM
 
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Well, I don't believe homeschooling laws would have any influence in where we lived. I could be wrong, but I don't *think* that would sway us one way or the other. However, homeschooling community would have a huge say-so and influence as to where I'd like to go should we ever move (which ain't happening ) I know a lot of people homeschool in PA successfully. Have you found any groups to help navigate through it all?

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#7 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 12:14 AM
 
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We moved from a state where homeschooling was easy as far as requirements and paperwork (Maryland) to a state where I thought homeschooling would be a pain in the butt (New York).

Honestly, the extra paperwork really wasn't a big deal because we chose not to stress out about it. I just sent in what they asked for, no more and then ignored them. We did have to do standardized testing this year, but I told the kids that it was something the school people wanted us to do and that it wasn't important. They both did really well on it.

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#8 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 12:16 AM
 
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We've given some thought of crossing the border to Idaho (only 15 mins away) b/c their HSing laws and MANY other laws are much less restricting than WA.

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#9 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 09:33 AM
 
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We've given some thought of crossing the border to Idaho (only 15 mins away) b/c their HSing laws and MANY other laws are much less restricting than WA.
Now THAT I can see -- same job, same life, differnt address 15 miles away ... in a case like that, simply chooseing house A or house B ...it would be on the list of pros and cons ... but still not a decideding factor.

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#10 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 10:14 AM
 
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I haven't done any research to validate this, but I would hypothesize that in a state where HS laws give a strong voice to parental choice, so would many other laws (vaccination, for example). We are in Texas which has determined that parental sovereignty is the way to go, and the state does little to interfere in parental rights except, of course, in cases of abuse/gross neglect. So, depending on the state's overall view of parental rights, I might actually be motivated to move -- it just seems like HS laws that favor parents go hand-in-hand with other laws that uphold the parents' right to choose what is right for their families.

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#11 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 11:38 AM
 
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as a military family that moves around a lot we find that being in a friendly hs state make a big difference. We often find many more HS families and resources when we are living in a friendly HS state. We are currently in NC and finding it less fun to HS here than when we were in TX.

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#12 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 12:09 PM
 
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Originally Posted by SamGroom View Post
as a military family that moves around a lot we find that being in a friendly hs state make a big difference. We often find many more HS families and resources when we are living in a friendly HS state. We are currently in NC and finding it less fun to HS here than when we were in TX.
it must just be the area of NC your in. i'm in the charlotte area, and there are over 10,000 homeschoolers in this vicinity alone (literally). i've never seen so much to choose from in regard to extra curricular activities, homeschool stores, classes, playdates, co-ops, field trips, diversity, choices, etc.

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#13 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 12:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We could hop over to NJ, MD or DE, with it being just a longer commute for Dh. plus tolls and considering taxes and possible where we would live (ie land verses suburbs)

I guess it comes down to whether it would really be doable in PA. the type of home we want is available in PA, but not as nice variants are available elsewhere.

I tried the philly Yahoo groups and the two I found were both shut down.

I guess I am wondering if its worth the sacrifice.

my current understanding of Philly law is a compulsory age of 6, but if you write a note? stating you are homeschooling then you have to do nothing intensive until 8. I could be totally wrong though.

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#14 of 14 Old 06-29-2010, 03:05 PM
 
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We live in Michigan, where hs is very easy but unemployment is 17%, in my area. Dh is working as a contractor...in Afghanistan, to support us

We've been planning to move to TN, it's beautiful, much less expensive and we just think we'd love it there, until I read the HS laws. We are seriously reconsidering now. We can't/won't stay in Michigan but may look for a new state that is more hs friendly. I was so shocked to read the laws in TN, considering how we expected to have more freedoms and less govt oversight in general living there. I'm really bummed.

So, while I haven't ever moved to better accomodate hs, it's important enough to us to make or break a decision about where we live. We hs'd as a military family when our teens were in elem and Kansas seemed pretty hs friendly. Maybe we'll go back there, lol.
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