The New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition News November/December 2012 Volume XXIV Number 2
Coordinator’s Report, November, 2012
The school year is in full swing for many homeschoolers across the beautiful state of New Hampshire. I wanted to take the time to remind you of the ways the NHHC and your local District Representative can help. Are you looking for a local homeschooling support group? Are you considering starting your own local homeschooling support group? Do you have questions about homeschooling in New Hampshire? Are you interested in locating a specific resource or finding out about a particular activity? Are you organizing a homeschooling activity and want to spread the word to fellow homeschoolers? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, your District Representative can help. You can visit http://nhhomeschooling.org/reps to contact your local representative.
The Board has started planning for our 2013 Spring Homeschooling workshop. A date and location is in the works so remember to regularly check our website for up- dates and specific details. If you have ideas or suggestions for workshop content, it’s not too late to let us know. Please contact any board member with your comments.
Finally, the New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition can be found on Facebook. Please come check it out, "like" us, and feel free to start sharing your homeschool events.
Report of the Home Education Advisory Council
Meeting with the Superintendents
Mike Compitello and I were invited to attend the monthly Commissioner's meeting with the superintendents on Friday, October 26, to discuss recent changes to the homeschooling law. The DOE sent a technical advisory to all districts in June informing them of the changes, but we had heard reports of some confusion over notification, and we hoped to prevent problems over evaluations in the spring.
One superintendent asked--and I could see that others shared his concern--how districts are to report the number of homeschoolers now that notification is a one-time requirement. I said they could assume that a program, once established, continues each year, but of course if a family moves or enrolls a student in a private school without informing the district, statistics will become less reliable.
Another superintendent asked about grade placement and expressed dismay for the diminished oversight of homeschoolers, now that evaluations need not be submitted to the participating agency; they may still be used to determine a student's academic eligibility for curricular and co-curricular programs. She stated that she has seen students homeschooled through eighth grade enter high school unprepared. Not only does remedial work cost districts time and money, she anticipates anger and opposition from parents if a student is not placed at the grade level they expect.
In the light of this concern with homeschoolers, it was interesting to read in the October 28 Sunday News that parents in the Manchester school district are concerned over inadequate preparation of students in the elementary and middle schools for high school work; nearly a third of the freshman at Central High last year failed algebra.
It's probably overly optimistic to hope that we might be able to make all the needed changes to the rules at one meeting, but we'll do our best. If you have any suggestions or concerns, feel free to get in touch with me, or any Council member.
Future Events--Tell Us What You'd Like
At the last Coalition Board meeting there was a discussion about fall events. This year the transcript workshop was combined with the spring workshop. Board members would like to know if there is interest in a transcript workshop in late summer every other year.
Do people want to hear speakers, or attend a curriculum open house where materials used by homeschoolers are on display and attendees can look and ask questions? Please let us know.
Model Home Design and Decoration
November 10, 1:30-4:30, for ages 9-13
Marion Gerrish Community Center, 39 West Broadway, Derry
$45 course fee + $45 materials fee ($90)
Each participant will customize, build, wire up, and decorate a model home to take home at the end of the class. Participants will learn how our H3XL-designed laser-cut model home and furniture are made, learn about basic circuits, and wire up LED lights. Sponsored by H3XL http://www.h3xl.com/about-us; class run by Katy Hamilton, formerly homeschooled student.
H3XL is headquartered in Burlington, Massachusetts; Katy, who is developing its curriculum, is running her first class in Derry. These miniature houses are not purchased kits, but were designed and the parts produced by Katy and her husband, an electrical engineer, over the past few weeks specifically to accommodate a child's level of fine motor skills and simple LED wiring. Another class they are working on will enable students to incorporate LED's into clothing or stuffed animals. Read more about the class at http://www.h3xl.com/h3xl-school-calendar?task=view_event&event_id=8Hi
For our next issue, we want to ask homeschoolers…
What online resources can you recommend? Do you have an online record keeping that you especially like? Please send your responses to Abbey Lawrence, email@example.com
And Homeschoolers Asked Us...
Do homeschooled teens get working papers from their town school even if they use a nonpublic school as their participating agency?
Chris Hamilton's reply, edited for length:
The short answer - yes, the working papers are issued by the public school.
Long answer -
Here's the big picture on Child Labor Laws:
Here is an excerpt from the N.H. rules that mentions homeschooled students:
Lab 1001.04 "Youth employment certificate", as required by RSA 276-A:5, means the document which is issued to a minor by a principal of a school in New Hampshire or by a person authorized by them upon the receipt of an Employer's Request for Child Labor
Form and proof of age.
and here is the portion of the NH law about certificates:
276-A:4 contains the restrictions on hours and days a student may work, and a list of occupations which do not require a certificate.
I. Certificates shall be issued by principals of schools or persons authorized by them only after the determination of a satisfactory level of academic performance by the student, except that responsibility for supervision and coordination with the department in matters pertaining to this chapter shall rest upon superintendents of schools. If a student does not continue to meet a satisfactory level of academic performance after the issuance of the certificate, the principals of schools or persons authorized by them may revoke the certificate.
The rules for students ages 16 and 17 obtaining permission to take the GED have been changed to allow the participating agency to sign the form for homeschooled students. It would seem reasonable for PA's to issue youth employment certificates as well (and principals of private schools to issue them for their students). This might be a change
to RSA 276-A:5 that homeschoolers would want to seek through legislation.
Manchester Monarchs School Day November 14
The Manchester Monarchs, in partnership with the New Hampshire Department of Education, invite you to participate in the third Monarchs School Day on November 14 at 10:00 a.m. Upon arriving at the event, each student will receive a workbook which combines the educational aspects of the American Hockey League with the excitement of the great sport of hockey. Students will use their math, their geography skills, their knowledge of New Hampshire history, and their critical thinking skills to solve word puzzles, and much more.
On the concourse, students will find exhibits, most of which will be interactive, focusing on health and wellness, geography, math, reading, and science. The hockey game itself will include video board quizzes and trivia.
For more information about this event please contact Bob McCaffrey of the Manchester Monarchs at (603) 626-7825 ext. 6113. Sign up at https://www.monarchsjungle.com/new-hampshire-homeschool-coalition (please note the New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition is not sponsoring and has not been involved in preparing content for this event.)
Sign Up Now for the Scripps National Spelling Bee
WeAre Home Educators has registered for the Scripps National Spelling Bee this year and invites all New Hampshire homeschool students in grades 1-8 to participate. It will take place at the Nackey Loeb School on Saturday, January 12, 2013, at 1:00. For more information, and to register, visit http://www.wearehomeeducators.com/#page=Event&eventId=344&tab=0.
Remember, check our website www.nhhomeschooling.org for more activities and announcements!
Please let us know if you would like to be removed from the NHHC membership list.
NHHC Newsletter Staff
Abbey Lawrence, Editor, PO Box 97, Center Tuftonboro, NH 03816
539-7233, firstname.lastname@example.org. Stefanie Marsh, layout and web posting.
Portions of NHHC publications may be reprinted for information purposes provided that credit is given to the New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition. Contributors retain full rights to their writing, and their permission should be obtained before reprinting.