Homeschool Myth #1
While on a homeschool field trip to one of Denver's museums, I had another museum patron approach me, wondering why I was at the museum with school-aged children during school hours. I thought about telling her to mind her own business, but I like to look at negativity or disagreement as another chance to make my positive outlook stronger. If I can help someone else along the way, that's even better.
I let her know that the children were homeschooled and that we were visiting the museum to study artifacts that represented their current studies. She then proceeded to ask me if I was concerned about being contacted by a truancy officer. I politely informed her that the truancy officer would not be contacting me, as homeschooling is perfectly legal, as are educational field trips during school hours. I explained to her that this was part of the children's lessons for the day and that just like children in public and private school, field trips were a part of school.
The lady was actually very friendly. She was just misinformed and looking at the issue in a different way. She was simply thinking about the fact that we were not inside a building during school hours, but after hearing my explanation about education being obtained in other places besides a classroom, I believe she understood.
She actually became very interested and we had a nice conversation while the children were filling in their answers on the questionnaire worksheet I had brought along for them. Of course I went over the answers with them after she left to be sure the lesson was learned. Schooling does not have to occur in one setting all the time and that's something people don't often think about.
Another reason the subject of truancy can come up is because many people assume that a home school is not a school. They feel that since the child is not attending a formal school building, that means they are absent or truant from school.
However, "being schooled" simply means a person is being educated. Most children in homeschool are learning. They are not just staying at home and playing. In fact, home schooled children have scored higher than those in public and private schools. Therefore, that evidence shows they are being taught. In order to be truant, one must not be attending school at all. If the children are being taught and all the state laws are being followed, the child is not truant.
If you are homeschooling and are having legal issues with anyone, contact the HSLDA to see if they can help.
*This author welcomes feedback and discussion.
**I originally published this via Yahoo Contributor Network