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Friday, June 22, 2018

LRSD Official Implies Homeschool Programs are Inferior

Official Implies Homeschool Programs are Inferior

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In late November of 2016, Little Rock School District Superintendent Mike Poore wrote to area homeschooling parents inviting them to enroll their children in public school and promising to provide a “more rigorous curriculum.”

Is the public school curriculum really more rigorous? Let’s do some quick fact-checking.The implication, obviously, was that the public school would provide a better curriculum than homeschool families—an astonishing and unsupported assertion. An apology was subsequently issued, but the district never withdrew its claim that its curriculum is more rigorous.
Attorney for Arkansas
For many years, all Arkansas homeschool students were required to take standardized tests. They consistently out-scored their public school counterparts. In 2009, the largest-ever national study of homeschool students showed that the average homeschooled 8th grader scored at the 12th grade level.
In 2010, public schools in Arkansas (and most other states) skidded into the befuddled Alice-in-Wonderland world of Common Core. Justifiably skeptical homeschooling families stuck with what works. As a consequence, homeschool students nationwide outscored others on all three sections of the important SAT college admission test for 2014 (the last year for which results are available for comparison) by significant margins.
Poore’s claim that the public school curriculum is more rigorous cannot be taken seriously...

"The Little Rock School District issued an apology Friday after parents of homeschooled students were sent a letter that many say they found offensive.
The letter was sent from LRSD superintendent Michael Poore and said in part:
"While I am certain you have done a stellar job with your student in the home school setting; I would like to join your effort and enhance his/her educational experience by providing an even more rigorous curriculum coupled with systems to enhance the whole child," the letter said
Many of the parents who received the letter took to social media saying they were offended that the letter promised a "more rigorous curriculum," which could suggest their kids were not getting a strong education at home. 
"It really comes across as though they don't think that our curriculum is rigorous and I'm offended by that," said Natasha Jones, a mother of seven who home schools her children. 
Jones said she wishes the school district would have asked their opinions about why they're not a part of the school system, instead of attempting to recruit them.
"This letter makes it seem like homeschooling is the easy choice and it's really not. It would be a lot easier for me to send my seven children to school everyday. So if they want to know what they need to do to get us back, they should ask us why we didn't go there or chose to leave there in the first place," Jones said. 
Jones received 5 letters to her home for each of her school-aged children, which said seems like a waste for a district looking at $11 million dollars in budget cuts.
LRSD responded to a request for comment from Channel 7 with a statement:
The Little Rock School District would like to apologize to any home school parent who took offense to a recently delivered letter. Our intent was to offer an opportunity to partner with the District. We know that parents value choice and we respect their decision to home school. Our letter was intended to make home school parents aware of opportunities for their students to access additional academic or extracurricular programs.
We also apologize that some parents received duplicate letters and will strive to improve our communication process."
When two attorneys and homeschooling dads—Mike Farris and Mike Smith—founded Home School Legal Defense Association in March 1983, homeschooling was just a tiny blip on the educational radar screen. The age-old concept of parents teaching their children at home had fallen into obscurity. Families who chose such a “nontraditional” education route often encountered opposition, sometimes even legal challenges, from the educational bureaucracy as well as from their own friends and relatives.
Seeing a need for affordable legal advocacy, the two Mikes joined forces to establish a nonprofit ministry to defend and advance the constitutional right of parents to direct the education of their children and to protect family freedoms. (See our mission).
Through the years, HSLDA’s primary goal has remained the same—to bring together a large number of homeschooling families so that each can have a low-cost method of obtaining quality legal defense. Today, HSLDA gives tens of thousands of families the freedom to homeschool without having to face legal threats alone. Through many families sticking together, we have been able to keep the cost of a year’s membership close to the rate that a family would have to pay for an hour of an attorney’s time almost anywhere else.

“I had no idea how successful homeschooling was going to be for our family when we started. We had hoped that it would work out and that God would bless it. God’s blessings have been a lot bigger and better than I could have ever imagined.”

“My wife and I are so grateful for having been able to homeschool our children, and I love being part of the effort to preserve that freedom for the next generation.”
After a family joins HSLDA, there are no further charges of any kind for defending them in court. HSLDA pays in full all attorney fees, expert witness costs, travel expenses, and all other court costs permissible by state law for us to pay.
The vast majority of contacts member families face are successfully resolved through our early intervention without any court action. Many times, our team of HSLDA attorneys simply call or write letters on behalf of members contacted by local officials. For those who wind up in court, HSLDA provides full representation at every stage of legal proceedings.
Member families receive not merely numerous valuable, tangible benefits, but also the invaluable and intangible blessing of defending liberty—for their own children and for future generations.
Peace of mind. Protection. 24/7.
Divisions and programs of HSLDA
We have established a number of divisions and programs to better serve our members, as well as to support the homeschooling community at large. Several of these are highlighted below:


About HSLDA membership

What is the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA)?
Home School Legal Defense Association is a nonprofit advocacy organization established to defend and advance the constitutional right of parents to direct the upbringing and education of their children and to protect family freedoms. We provide homeschooling-related legal advice and representation to our over 80,000 member families, promote homeschool-friendly legislation at the state and federal levels, and offer information and resources to encourage and support all homeschoolers.
What legal services does HSLDA provide to members?
What other services does HSLDA provide to members?
What services does HSLDA provide to nonmembers?
How much does it cost to join?
How do I join HSLDA?
Why do I have to fill out a membership application in order to join?
What happens after I submit my application?
Will you sell, share, or give out my address information?
Is my membership and application information kept confidential?
I am an HSLDA member. How do I contact HSLDA in a legal emergency?
How do I contact HSLDA with a non-emergency issue?

About homeschooling

I would like to homeschool my child. How do I start?
I do not have a teaching degree or certificate. Can I homeschool my child?
Can I homeschool my child with special needs?
Can I homeschool my high schooler?
Can I homeschool overseas?
Can I homeschool an adopted or foster child?
Can I homeschool someone else’s child?
What is the homeschool law in my state?
Is my child old enough to stay home alone?

More about HSLDA’s legal services

Are all legal costs paid for?
Does HSLDA ever refuse legal services to a member?
Does HSLDA represent members in child protective services contacts? 
Why does HSLDA help member families in the initial stage of a child abuse investigation?
If I think a family might be abusing or neglecting their children, can I call HSLDA for advice? 
Does HSLDA ever represent homeschooling parents when challenged by third parties (grandparents, for example) in visitation and/or custody cases?
Why can’t HSLDA represent the parent seeking to homeschool in a contested custody case?
Does HSLDA help its members obtain access to public school facilities and activities?
Does HSLDA help its members obtain access to special education and related services benefits through the public schools? 
If I stop homeschooling, will HSLDA help me persuade public school officials to accept my child's homeschool credits?
Can I receive legal advice without joining HSLDA?

More about HSLDA membership

Does HSLDA require its members to be Christians or to use Christian curricula?
Can I join HSLDA if I don’t use a standard curriculum or consider myself an “unschooler”?
Can I join if my children are being taught at home through a charter school or public school independent study program?
Can I join if I already have legal problems concerning my homeschooling?
Can I join HSLDA if I’m not currently homeschooling?
What if I cannot afford the membership dues?
What if I want to cancel my membership?


Is HSLDA a prepaid legal service or legal insurance provider?
What is HSLDA’s organizational structure?
Where does the membership money go?
Is HSLDA a Christian organization?
Does HSLDA promote exclusively Christian homeschool support groups?
Is HSLDA politically active?
What is the HSLDA PAC?
What does HSLDA’s Federal Relations Department do?
What is the Generation Joshua program?
What is the Home School Foundation (HSF)?
What is HSLDA Online Academy?
What is HSLDA’s relationship to Patrick Henry College (PHC)?
What is HSLDA’s relationship to ParentalRights.org?
What is HSLDA’s relationship with state and local homeschool organizations?
How is HSLDA involved with homeschooling in other countries?
How can I support HSLDA’s mission?

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