Who Can Teach Your Home Schooled Children? Must You Do It? Or Can You Get Someone Else To Do It?
Learn What Your State's Requirements Are Regarding Who Can Teach Your Home Schooled Children
Recently the questioned was raised, “Who can teach my home schooled children? Must I teach them myself if I home school, or can I get someone else to teach them?
This hub is inspired by that question.
First of all, home school regulations vary from one state to another. You will have to check with your state’s education department to know exactly what is required of home schoolers in your state. To avoid unpleasantries down the road, it is a good idea to know exactly what you must do to comply with your state’s home school regulations. To get an overview of requirements in some states, click here.
You may also be able to get a good idea of what your state’s home school requirements are by researching the subject on Google or one of the other search engines. If there is a home school association in your area, they may be able to give you information on this subject. You should be able to locate your nearest home school association on the Internet also.
Even if the home school association says you cannot employ a noncertified instructor for your children, look into the actual state regulations that govern your state on this issue. Sometimes groups and/or individuals may be acting on hearsay rather than facts. Hearsay is a belief that is passed by word of mouth, or gossip in some cases, and not based in fact.
Who Can Teach Your Home Schooled Child?
My Own Experience With Home Schooling
If you have read one of my several hubs on home schooling, you know that I home schooled my daughter from pre-kindergarten through high school. I wrote the curriculum myself, but that may not be allowed in some states, since I am not a certified teacher.
My daughter passed the GED exam with flying colors without taking any of those prep courses for that test. She just went in cold turkey and took the test getting in the 90 percentile in all areas except math, where she got in the 80 percentile. She did not have to take any part of the test over again like so many people often have to do.
During the course of educating my daughter myself with the help of her father as time allowed him to participate, my daughter had tutors for algebra, geometry, and Spanish. We were fortunate in that a foreign language professor from one of our state universities was our next-door neighbor and he offered to tutor our daughter at no charge.
None of the people who tutored my daughter in math were certified teachers. One was a college student, and a couple of them were stay-at-home moms who happened to have excellent math skills.
You might say, “but your daughter did not do that well in math with those instructors because she only got 80% in the math section of the GED.” Many, many people who take the GED have to repeat some of the sections over again, sometimes more than once. Passing with 80% is great. There is plenty of time to improve math skills in algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus later, if one is so inclined, and will have need of that skill. 80% is essentially a B. Do you have any idea how many people in this world would like to pass any math exam or class with a B?
In addition to tutors, my daughter had piano lessons starting at age 6. Studies have shown that children who start music training at an early age (4-6 years) do much better in math. While I could have taught her piano myself, since I read music, play the piano and the saxophone, I decided the experience of participating in recitals and competing for blue ribbons against other music students would be beneficial for my daughter. I did augment her practice at home, but her formal instructor was in charge of her lessons.
Who Can ‘Teach’ Your Home Schooled Child? When Must Your Child Receive Instruction? Must It Be Between 8 AM and 4 PM?
In Texas, anyone you choose can “teach” your child in specific subjects, or on a daily basis in all subjects. Your mother, your sister, your best friend, a neighbor -- anyone of your choosing. You do not have to do any, or all, of the teaching yourself. You would naturally want to choose someone well qualified with endless patience if you choose to let someone else teach your children. You want them to have a quality education after all.
Keep in mind that home school can be scheduled around whatever events are happening in your family. If you are working part-time or even full time, you can schedule home school classes for the times you are not working, whether that is afternoons, mornings, evenings, or on weekends. That is one of the advantages of home school. You can get a babysitter for times you must work and leave instructions about any homework you feel is necessary.
Meeting Your State’s Requirements
You will not likely be required to be a certified teacher in the state where you live so long as you are instructing only your own children. However, if you want to hire someone to instruct your children in your home school, your state may require that person to be a certified teacher. One way you may be able to meet your state’s requirements that your children’s instructors must all be certified teachers – if that should be the case in your state – is to give your children’s instructors the title of tutor. You will be the instructor, but you may hire people to tutor your child(ren).
Anyone can be a tutor so long as they are well informed and skilled in the subject they are tutoring, and you would naturally want the best for your children. Keep in mind that you are your children’s homeschool teacher and any tutors answer to you. Be sure to characterize any tutors you engage for your children as tutors in reports you may be required to make to your state.
Do not misunderstand. By no means am I suggesting that you should not get your child the best teachers/tutors you can afford, but I think we all know that every teacher who is certified is not necessarily the best teacher, and people who are not certified may be exceptional teachers. Who would not love to have Einstein instruct their child in physics if that were possible? He was not a certified instructor. Very often experts are not certified instructors. They are just very good at what they do.
If you know someone who is excellent in a particular area – writing, math, history, art, music, or whatever, you may want to engage that person to be one of your child’s tutors. Your child will benefit far more than s/he would benefit by attending public school where teachers are only required to know how to teach. They are not required to know any particular subject well, but only how to teach it.
It is my own opinion that anyone who does not know the subject they are teaching well cannot teach it as well as someone who does know that subject. Simply following written instructions or guidelines on “how to teach,” may not be the ideal regardless of certification. Would you want to learn how to fly an airplane from someone who has never even been in an airplane, but has been taught “how to teach?”
Yes, there can also be the problem that some people who are experts in their field are no good at conveying their knowledge to other people, especially children. So you must use your judgment if you decide to engage a tutor for your child. Make sure you are getting your child the best teacher/tutor you can afford, because their future depends on it.
If you have any questions regarding home school, feel free to email those questions to me. I will answer them if I can, or point you in the direction where you can find the answers.
More from Au Fait on Education, and Home Schooling
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- When Should Children Start Learning Music and How to Play An Instrument?
When should your child begin learning music and/or how to play an instrument? Studies show that children who learn music improve their learning ability in other areas, like math and reading too.
- Give Your Baby a Head Start -- It's Never too early to start preparing your child for success.
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- Give Your Toddler a Head Start -- Part 2 of Educating Your Child For Success
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- Best Home School Schedule For Your Child and Your Family
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- Single Sex Classrooms -- Dividing the Instruction and Education That Girls and Boys Receive
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- Homeschooling Questionnaire: Is Home Schooling Right For You?
Questionnaire to help parents determine if home schooling is right for their children and their family.