With so many uncertainties about the fall, parents are exploring many options. Here is some information to help you decide about homeschooling.
Here’s some information on the exciting world of homeschooling. There are lots of opportunities for your family, in a state that pretty much leaves us alone.
I run the Omaha Homeschool Learning Center. I’m a former high school teacher and currently teach at Metro Community College. The Learning Center provides weekly classes (on Wednesdays) to supplement your home curriculum, brings classes that you already attend into one place, has activities and classes for the entire family (ages 3 to high school), and strives to create a community of learners and homeschool moms.
We have about 550 students and dozens of moms: it’s a wonderful way to meet a lot of people. It also allows you to chat with other moms on a weekly basis and to get the information and support that you need, although you are also welcome to drop your kids off. We want to serve your needs. You can find a list of our in-person classes here and our online classes can be found here.
Choosing which curriculum to use is one of the most daunting decisions for homeschoolers. There are several places online that give you a good overview, including http://www.hslda.org/earlyyears/Curriculum.asp for K-8, and http://www.hslda.org/highschool/curriculum.asp for high school.
You can find free online curriculum at http://www.ck12.org
There is also a free virtual K-8 school recently started by Omaha Public School. Students work independently meet in a classroom but get their curriculum online. You can find more information about them at http://www.omahavirtualschool.org/
Homeschool students who are 16 years or older can also take very inexpensive classes at Metro Community College. These classes can count for both high school and college credit.
The Learning Center typically starts fall classes the first week of September; most classes are 12 weeks long. Our second semester usually begins the first week of February.
Many of our classes stay the same year-to-year, but there are always some pleasant new surprises. By subscribing to our email list (omahahomeschool.com), you should receive our registration packet when it comes out. We also announce it in the local e-trees and our website. If you don’t hear from us, don’t hesitate to contact us.
No one is required to help, but volunteers are given discounted tuition, priority registration, and a stipend. Click here for more information. Tuition is typically $95 for a 12-week semester class (without any discounts or stipends); there may also be an additional charge for supply fees.
If you don’t end up registering, feel free to visit us when we are in session. Just shoot us an email so that we can set it up.
There are many homeschool groups in our area, but the biggest is the Nebraska Homeschool. It has no meetings, but rather provides information to its members. You can find them at http://www.nebraskahomeschool.org/
There are several dynamic Facebook groups
The largest Nebraska homeschool conference is held in Lincoln in April. You can find more about them at http://www.nchea.org/2018-why-attend/
Two more modest homeschool conferences are held in the summer in Omaha. You can find out information about the Nebraska Homeschool conference at their website, http://www.nebraskahomeschool.org/
For the Catholic homeschool conference, contact Regina Heywood at firstname.lastname@example.org,
We have some large support groups and many smaller ones. Most groups have meetings, various activities, and some have classes. Currently, there is no list of area groups.
To get emails about homeschool events, send an email to email@example.com. You don’t have to belong to any group to receive these.
Homeschool Teen Serve is an organization of homeschooled teens committed to volunteer service projects benefitting local communities, which kids love and really provides an excellent opportunity to get to meet other teens. It provides the life-changing opportunity to introduce junior and senior high teens to the joy of serving while opening their eyes to the needs of others in their community. There is a chapter in Omaha and Bellevue. Students must be currently enrolled in a home school and must be either in the 7th grade or turning 13 during the upcoming school year or older. You can find more about them at http://www.homeschoolteenserve.org/faqs-what-you-may-want-to-know/
If you are active-duty military or in the guard, you may want to take advantage of all of the services offered by Offutt’s School Liaison Office, Michelle Pridell, 402-294-4329.
The Nebraska State Education Department refers to homeschools as “exempt schools.” You can download state documents at https://www.education.ne.gov/fos/orgservices/exemptschools/Index.html
If you have problems, you can call either of the following people and they will send you the documents that you need.
Here’s the Department of Education website.
You may also want to look at their FAQs
HSLDA (The Home School Legal Defense Association) always does a stellar job presenting information, although their overall approach is a bit restrictive for my taste. http://www.hslda.org/earlyyears/StartHere.asp
We hope we get a chance to meet you and your family!
Jack and Holly Donnelly