The goal of any education is to get the most out of the learning experience, and some parents decide that home schooling offers the best educational opportunity for their child. If you make this decision, your child may benefit from an education based on his strengths and personality, and he can receive additional attention to help him overcome his challenges. Another advantage is that your child will not get lost in the shuffle of a large classroom size, limited supplies and books, and the negative aspects of peer pressure. But there are some disadvantages to home schooling, too. For example, a home-schooled child may miss out on extracurricular activities, pertinent social skill building and problem solving challenges, as well as the rewards of developing friendships with peers. Many parents who choose to home school their child make an effort to enroll their child in community sports or recreational activities, or they team up with other parents and home-schooled children. This team approach can help children to develop social skills and ease the task load for all of the parents involved.
If you’ve chosen to home school your child, you face the challenge of developing lessons and curriculum. There are many useful resources online. Virtual textbooks, online lesson plans, or even online schools, virtual classrooms, and technology-based “e-learning” may meet your child’s needs. An obvious advantage of online classes is that they can take place anywhere, as long as you have a reliable internet connection.
If you decide to home school your child, you’ll want to start by checking into your state’s legal requirements, and considering what, if any, adaptations you may need to make for your child’s disability or special needs. There are many support groups and on-line forums for families who have chosen to home school their child. Make sure the online resources you choose are reputable sources of information by doing your own research. A great starting point is: K12 Academics.
- What is the correct process to withdraw your child from public school so there is no question of truancy?
- Is there legal paperwork to file with the state in order to homeschool?
- What is your state’s compulsory attendance law? (Children in in a certain age range are required to spend a specific amount of time being educated.)
- What curriculum materials does your state require?
- What are your state’s requirements regarding testing and assessment?
- Does your state officially recognize graduation for homeschoolers? If so, what are the graduation requirements?
Utah State Office of Education
This site provides information about Utah schools, the school board, rules, regulations, and more.
National Charter School Directory
In this site you can search for Charter Schools by location.
Utah State Office of Education Charter School Section
The goal of charter schools is to provide additional educational options with quality outcomes for students and parents. Charter schools are public schools open to all students. They operate on public funds without tuition. They also vary widely across the United States.
Utah Association of Public Charter Schools
The Utah Association of Public Charter Schools is the clearinghouse for all things charter. They focus on three populations in the charter movement: 1. Charter Schools, the reason they exist 2. Partners, Businesses that support charter schools 3. Parents, the reason charter schools exist
Spectrum Academy Charter School for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Located in North Salt Lake, Utah, Spectrum Academy educators understand the academic, social and behavioral challenges of students with Asperger's Syndrome and high-functioning autism.
Carson Smith Special Needs Scholarship
The Carson Smith Special Needs Scholarship is a state-funded program that provides private school scholarships to K-12 students with disabilities in Utah. Website host: Parents for Choice in Education.
Uniquely Gifted: Resources for Gifted Children with Special Needs
Resources for "twice exceptional" children, intellectually gifted children with special needs such as ADHD, learning disabilities, Asperger Syndrome.
Utah Education Facts and Private School Information
Private school programs cater to a wide range of ages, abilities and needs. As a parent, you can discuss with the school administration if the school can provide the educational environment your child needs to be successful.
Kids World Academy for special needs children
Kids World Academy in Taylorsville offers a low teacher-to-student ratio which allows each child, both special needs and typical, a good deal of one-on-one time with a teacher each day.
Carmen B. Pingree Center for Children with Autism
The philosophy of the autism program is based on achieving behavior change through the use of shaping and reinforcement. We work on teaching appropriate skills and behaviors to the child to replace any inappropriate behaviors.
Utah Parent Center
A non-profit organization that provides training, information, referral, and assistance to parents of children and youth with all disabilities including physical, mental, hearing, vision, learning, behavioral, and emotional. Staff consists primarily of parents of children and youth with disabilities.
Center for Parent Information and Resources (DOE)
A large resource library related to children with disabilities. Parent Centers in every state provide training to parents of children with disabilities. Lists local conferences, support groups, advocacy tips, and suggestions for finding schools and other local services; Department of Education, Office of Special Education.