Florida is an expensive state, and some potential homeschoolers wonder if homeschooling is equally as expensive. Depending on the circumstances of each child, this could be a good thing.
The average cost of homeschooling in Florida is around $700 to $1,800 per year. The cost includes the materials for courses, the curriculum used to teach the child, textbooks and extracurricular activities outside of the home.
Below will go into more detail about the process of switching from public to homeschooling, as well as the state of Florida’s laws concerning homeschooling.
Florida State Laws on Homeschooling
First of all, if the child is going to be homeschooled, the state of Florida requires that the parent(s) file a notice of their intent to homeschool their child with a local superintendent. Once they’re approved, the parents are able to choose what curriculum will best suit their child.
Florida requires of bit of feedback and regulation on homeschooled children. This particular requirement included that parents must keep and preserve a portfolio of educational records, and maintain it for two years.
Florida also require parents to submit an annual report or evaluation that the requirements of the homeschooling experience are met. Once the homeschool program as been completed, a letter of termination must be filed and sent so the child can be recognized that he/she has completely their schooling.
There are a couple ways that a child can be homeschooled. One is that the parent or guardian teaches their child, but a second option could be that the parents can hire a private tutor for their child. These are the most homeschool-related options, and these can be considered with every parent and child.
Normal homeschooling with parent and child may be because the child is falling behind, but if the child is really struggling, then hiring a private tutor would be the best bet.
When it comes to standardized testing, Florida offers homeschoolers two options: One is that the annual evaluation that the parents must submit is equal to their standardized test. The second option is a little more complicated, but simply stated: the homeschooler can take standardized tests instead of the annual evaluations. And that can be done in a number of ways that the state of Florida will accept. (Source 1, Source 2)
Average Cost of Homeschooling Components
Homeschooling is only $700 to $1,800 per child, per year. This is quite a low amount, especially if the lowest cost is $700. Per year. For one child.
Seriously, homeschooling sounds amazing, but the cost is something to think about because there has to be some way to teach a child when they are not enrolled in school. (Source)
Books, especially textbooks for subjects such as math and science, can fetch a heavy price that may sink your heart a bit. As do some of the books that may be beneficial for the child’s learning that are more of a classical read than an instructive read. However, there are ways around this particular money expense.
One way would be to first find a library that is near your home. If they have library cards, get one! Or, if there is a reading/library app that you can use, use that as well! This will save a whole lot of money compared to buying all of the books for your personal library. The library books can be borrowed and renewed at any time.
Book sales are another option, and this can be an opportunity to grow a personal library of teaching materials. The books will be cheaper than normal, which will help with expenses. Keep an eye out for good deals online as well.
The curriculum costs will depend/vary on which one you use for the education of your child. Some online courses may include Khan Academy, Time4Learning, or FLVS, a homeschool program that is literally for homeschooling children in Florida.
Also, when educating your child, look out for free events that can provide a good learning experience.
Extracurricular activities is another big money spender. There may be some parents who don’t like having their kids doing more, but homeschool kids need to do other activities that are outside of their home environment, and especially if they are much-too comfortable at home.
Kids grow when they are out of their comfort zones, so encourage any homeschooled child to participate in extracurricular activities! Some activities may include:
- These can be around the community
This author knows a family who made their kids do uncomfortable things, such as have them go into the store, by themselves, and buy food with the credit/debit card. It was definitely uncomfortable and hard at first, but because of these small experiences, these kids are some of the most mature people their age. Doing things out of someone’s comfort-zone changes kids, and matures them. So encourage extracurricular!
For most children, the most exciting part about any sort of school, are the field trips. Homeschooling can include field trips as well, maybe even more often in a six months than most schools do in a year! This can be an extra cost for some families who are teaching their children, but if the trips are prepared for and planned, the cost shouldn’t be an issue. The outings should be fun and educational as well! Some ideas may be:
- Going to a Museum
These could provide many opportunities for learning, especially in children because they’re curious about everything, and experience about life. As the children grow older, the field trips may decrease, and may also become more expensive.
For example, one idea for a field trip for a teenager who is still homeschooled, is to go to a foreign country and spend a few weeks there, learning the culture and language. These experiences can provide huge benefits for the student, and open their eyes to new ideas and experiences.
Homeschool does not have to be restricted to home. But it should still be full of learning, no matter the shape or form the learning comes in.