Being new to homeschooling can be overwhelming. It gets even harder depending on what your county expects you to do to keep up with standards. Some areas are good as long as you have an annual evaluation. Others want a portfolio of everything learned and completed. Some areas even ask for the amount of time you have been in school each day through attendance records. This is where umbrella schools come in to play. Today I am going to answer the question, “What is an umbrella school?”
The basic answer is, an umbrella school is there to keep the records and keep everything official to accommodate government requirements.
What does an umbrella school do?
Report Cards– Because the umbrella school is keeping records for you they also offer a report card to your child.
Attendance Records – The umbrella school will be in charge of tracking attendance for you. They will keep a record on each child for you.
Field Trips – Some umbrella schools will coordinate field trips your child can be a part of.
Clubs and Sports – With an umbrella school you are able to participate in school clubs and team sports through the school.
Provide Private School Standing – If your area is restrictive with homeschooling, this may be a great way to get around that using an umbrella school as your private school credibility.
What does it cost?
Many of the options I have seen sit around $200 a year. Some may be more or less but that is a general guideline.
What can I do instead?
Does the umbrella school look like something you are not interested in paying for? There are some options available to you that will involve work from you but save you money and let you have freedom to do things the way you want to.
Attendance/Report Cards – Homeschool SkedTrack and sites like it offer you a program where you can schedule your school work and track attendance.
Field Trips – Many homeschool groups will offer field trips using group rates without the need of an umbrella school.
Clubs and sports – Many clubs and sports will let you either sign on through private groups. There are some school districts that will even let you join clubs and sports with your local school. Ask your local school what the rules are for your district.