The Aburquerque Journal reports about 1 of 26 Rio Rancho children home educate, showing the area having a large proportion of homeschoolers. The article also described local Family School participation in the public school. Another interesting point was laid out that a bill was passed allowing New Mexico school districts to get state funding for every class a homeschooler takes. Below is sponsor Senator Brandt’s video explaining the bill.
From the ABQ Journal – When home is school … and school is home By Elaine Briseño
“Rio Rancho provides an exciting and vibrant environment,” she said. “In part, it’s because we have had great people before us who changed the way people look at home-school.”
The district itself has been supportive of home-school families. Former school board member Craig Brandt is now a Republican state senator. He sponsored a bill, which the governor signed into law, that will allow school districts to get state funding for every class a home-schooled student takes.
Previously, districts could not receive funding unless the student was enrolled at least part time. Currently, Rio Rancho and Albuquerque Public Schools do not allow home-school students to enroll unless they are part-time, and Brandt said he hopes the legislation will persuade them to reconsider.
This Family School idea for elementary school age children is intriguing. Elementary schools offering half day only programs seems like a fantastic idea allowing families to have more free family time.
I am curious about this statement below. I know families who successfully migrate back and forth from public school to homeschooling and visa versa. But the blending of homeschooling with public funded schools can get sticky.
The district also shows its support of home-schooled kids through Family School at Enchanted Hills Elementary. The program, which began in 1994, allows parents of first- through fifth-grade students to send their children to school for half a day. The class has a certified teacher and educational assistant. In addition to instruction, children participate in PE, art and music classes.
It might just be a matter of terminology and the freedom of educational choices for these families is noted. It appears the Rio Rancho families have many different options to educate their children. Those possibilities might explain the increased number of homeschoolers in Rio Rancho, or the data might explain the accountability to the public schools. It’s a decision parents make related to independence.