Saturday, September 19, 2009

Fall and Home Schooling in Whatcom County

Its fall here. Not technically - for a day or two, but it has arrived. The weather is feeling cooler, the trees are turning, the rains have returned.

Home schoolers have filed their intent forms with the local districts. But now what? If you are new to home schooling there is a lot of trial and error to contend with. Finding your best way to provide a quality education for your children is a journey in itself.

There are now three different Home Schooling Groups available through Yahoo Groups:

Bellingham Radical Unschoolers - Specifically for unschoolers, this group is very open minded and a great support place for the natural learner.

Bellingham Home School Community - This is an open group for anyone who is a home schooler, no matter your method. If you are an Alternative Learner, use a PPP, Unschool, WTM, it is no matter, you are welcome here. New members are encouraged to join.

Whatcom Home School Association - This is a Christian centered group, where you pay a fee. They are adamantly opposed to PPP participation. They have a very solid foundation. They hold monthly meetings, field trips and other activities.

There are great home schoolers in Whatcom County. Don't hesitate to join one or more of these groups and start meeting others.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

WHA Agenda on PPP's continues

Here is a loong post on the WHA site, furthering the Anti-PPP movement.

For the sake of clarity, I am not a PPP proponent, just a home schooling mom who wants ALL the information, not some filtered point of view, without the opposing side being fairly presented.

Something else they are not clarifying, this post is by someone who provides private christian doctrine education support to home schoolers. This poster's business is at stake since PPP's will not pay for faith based education materials.

Re: DVD presentation on the dangers of PPPs - Ferndale showing

> If you desire to make an informed decision about the educational options
> available to you, you must see this DVD. Also, even if you are not
> considering participating in a PPP, staying informed is one of the most
> important things each one of us can do to protect our freedom to homeschool.

I want to re-emphasize Gary's point about protecting our freedom to homeschool.

I've found that homeschooling families are parented by folks who LOVE being with
their kids, LOVE being and acting as families. They take the time to get to
know their kids, hang out with their kids, their family behavior spills into
their neighborhoods with their interaction with the folks around them, they make
other kids jealous with the amount of attention and time that homeschooled kids
get from their parents. They are not perfect families, but they love being

When my kids were part of public schools the invasiveness of their schedule,
useless homework, and demands to be part of this club and that sport really put
a toll on them and the family. I worked hard to teach them how to choose and to
understand the consequences of their choices, and I regret the amount we used
public schools. My husband is from the "They have to be socialized" camp, and
all I could do was compromise.

We've got it really good in WA, so far, for those of you who want to be in
control of your child's education, but the potential for invasion into
homeschooling has really ramped up with the PPP's.

I have long watched the charter/voucher school efforts in many states via the
Center for Educational Reform's reports, and what started out as good efforts to
provide a strong alternative for those who NEED a 5-day per week setting for
their kids has been nibbled away by the educationists who believe they know
better than the parent. Charter/ voucher schools have been hampered, funded at
unequal levels even though they were entitled to the same funds, come under
greater regulation than their regular public school counterparts, been denied
buildings, or simply closed because a local school board became too busy or
unwilling to supervise their administration.

If it can happen to a classroom setting, you must believe it can happen to
homeschoolers. The very existence of PPP's puts all homeschooling at risk. All
it takes is ONE regulation that applies not only to PPP students but to all
homeschoolers as well. It could be something as simple as not allowing any
student into Running Start or a publicly-funded university who has not proven
his/her ability to perform in a classroom setting.

This attack would not be coming from mythical folks who hate families, but from
school districts who have been depending on funds received for PPP-enrolled
students to balance their books. (Never mind that many graduates from public
high schools have yet to prove their ability to perform in a classroom setting.
We see them at the community college all the time.) Such a regulation would
force homeschoolers who want to apply to a state U to enroll in a high school
class or PPP.

Go see the video.

Again, the only way I would see this video is if there is someone who is PRO PPP there to debate the issues brought up in this film. Otherwise, this is purely dissemination of propaganda, and WHA is telling me what is best for my kids. Ummm, the pot calling the kettle black anyone????

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Facebook Group

We now have a facebook group started in addition to the yahoo group. You can find us on facebook as

Bellingham Home School Community

Join us!
:) Heather

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Is this what being a Christian Homeschooler is about?

Posted on the Community Site, regarding WHA's removal of PPP information and supporters:

Who had the right to make that decision? Did Gxxx get removed too? How 'bout Pxx of Dxx or anyone else who is shaming the human race by filling our inbox with their self-centered thoughts so they can see themselves in writing? And those of u thaat fancy yourselves "christians"? Most of u should be ashamed of yourselves. U won't be, but u should be. Stop filling my e-mail with your juvinile nonsense and get a real life, please!

Is this person a homeschooler? Because they should be outsourcing for English classes for their children if they are...

And yes, this person was reprimanded for their outright rudeness, seeing that the BHC site is for all persons, regardless of religious beliefs.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Posts removed from WHA's forum regarding PPPs

These two posts were written by a fellow forum member, who was subsequently removed from the list. I am posting them here so that others may see them.

under the heading
Whatcom County PPPs

I'm looking for a list of contact names for the local PPP programs. I realize I can get most of that info from this webpage:


If you review that list and don't see your school on there please reply to me, privately if you wish, with that info so that I can start on this project.

I'd like to put together a website that has all of this info in one place. Occasionally I get emails from people inquiring about all of the PPPs in the area. I'd like to be able to direct them to this website. I'd also like to make it a non-biased place where we can educate the general public on the misconceptions that overshadow these programs and address FAQs that people have regarding these programs. Perhaps if we can educate enough people we can diminish the animosity that some people have.

More info on PPPs
I've had several people email me the past few days wanting more info on PPPs in the area. Some are moving here from out of state. Others live out in the county and don't want to travel into Bellingham. ALL of them are fearful of posting a question on this group for fear of getting jumped on, etc. That's pretty sad. :( I'm glad they feel welcome to email me privately though. Feel free to keep doing so. :)

Anyway, I've been swamped with questions about how these programs run, etc. which is why I was thinking of creating a web page. However, I found that Lynden and Meridian have beautiful websites that give a pretty good idea on how these programs function in our local community. Feel free to check them out:

http://www.lynden. lll/site/ default.asp

http://www.meridian mp3/

Read their handbooks, etc., and you'll get a pretty good idea on how things go.

I really don't mind if you keep emailing me privately, but I just thought I'd share some resources I found that will answer a lot of these questions. :)

Again, let me know if there's anything else I can help you with or if you have any further specific questions I can help with. If anyone knows of any other great websites to help these folks please share.

Also, there is a sister Yahoogroup some may wish to join. It's a little more relaxed (Okay, a LOT more relaxed) and supportive than this group here. Families are offering popcorn/movie nights, etc. over there. I'd suggest you join that group and feel free to pull up a chair and enjoy some of that great Ethiopian coffee over there. *waves to Dana* Here's the location:

http://groups. group/bellingham -homeschool- community/

There are some great, friendly people over there!

PPP's what are they? Are they harming our future rights to home school independently?

How can we not ask these questions when we willingly sign on with a Parent Partnership Program at a local school district? I don't believe it is anything that a parent who has been a home schooler takes lightly.

My limited knowledge of PPP's - Parent Partnership Programs - leads me to believe that in most cases, they prove to be a win-win for all involved. It serves a need that a parent feels they could use assistance with, and allows the school system to bill the government for a child in their classroom.

But back to the questions.

#1 - What are they?
Okay, as far as I know, they are as varied as our kids can be. From only support classes to more traditional, each program is different. Which is so amazing to me! I feel like this is a huge step in the right direction - for public schools in general. Inviting parents to be active participants in the child's education and working as a team to customize learning is only bettering our children's future learning opportunities in the public schooling environment.

Which naturally leads to

#2 - Are they harming our future rights to home school independently?
Some would say yes. And specifically due to the type of education they are providing to their children. This is because public schooling does not allow for the teaching of faith based education. If all home schooling fell under the supervision of a school, this would be in violation of that policy.

I am only stating these first two for the sake of beginning a dialogue. I welcome all to post their personal view. Please refrain from personal attacks. I would ask that you please post web links that support your writing.

Bellingham Homeschool Community

Bellingham Homeschool Community is an open forum for all people in Whatcom County to come together and share about Home Schooling. It was created out of the need for embracing all home schoolers since some believe that participation in alternative learning programs means you are not actually a home schooler.

While that is an argument for another time, that I will be happy to host, the point is that this group is in support of anyone. And is interested in educating whoever asks, about all of the options of learning that are available in Whatcom County.

Currently, their home is through yahoo groups:

Please send an email thereto join.

Or post a comment here for more info.