Homeschooling? Is that legal? How do I start? Yes, homeschooling is legal. You can find a list of NYS regulations here. We are happy to answer any specific questions you have regarding paperwork or other legalities.
Who is listed as the Individual Providing Instruction on my NYS paperwork? Do you complete the paperwork for me? You are still listed as the Individual Providing Instruction on your NYS paperwork. The classes we provide are meant to supplement what you do at home, not replace it. Our instructors will provide suggested activities for you to do on the days your children are not at HFLC in order to prepare them for class activities. We do not fill out your NYS paperwork for you, but we do provide a book list to help you complete your IHIP’s and Quarterly Reports. If you are new to homeschooling and are looking for guidance, any of our board members or experienced parents would be happy to chat with you about completing your paperwork. It’s not as scary as it first appears!
Why do I need a learning center if I’m homeschooling? Holy Family Learning Center was founded by homeschooling moms for homeschooling families. We’ve learned through our own experiences as professional educators and then homeschool moms that certain subjects can often get lost in the shuffle of daily life and leave parents fearing “have I done enough?”. After focusing on skills instruction such as reading, writing, and math for multiple children, many busy moms find there isn’t enough time in the day for a science experiment or history lapbook. Skills subjects such as math and reading are best taught one on one, allowing the instructor to assess as they go and adjust to their student’s needs and pace. Subjects like Science, History, and Literature come alive through discussions and experiments and are well suited to learning in a group. This is where Holy Family Learning Center comes in. Our core program meets 2 mornings a week and includes classes in Science, History, Literature, and Latin. Maybe you’re just looking for an elective because you’re not an undiscovered Rembrandt or have a tin ear--our afternoon electives are offered on an a la carte basis and can be a great solution!
What is Family Centered Education? A family centered education is one that recognizes the importance of the parents as a child’s first and primary educators and recognizes that any educational service or organization should work to support them, not usurp their authority. We also believe that the family should be the center of a child's life, not just the parent/child relationship, but the sibling relationships as well. To that end, our curriculum is chosen so that all grade levels focus on the same subject matter at the same time at a level appropriate for their age so that all students in one family can discuss what they’re studying together and have something to contribute. Parents and siblings are always welcome in the Learning Center and we expect and encourage communication between Learning Center families and staff. For more details please read our Educational Philosophy.
I see that you are a Catholic organization. Do we have to be Catholic to participate? No. Holy Family Learning Center is open to any homeschooling family. We do not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, gender, religion, physical disability, or national or ethnic origin in the administration of our educational policies, admission policies and other administrative policies.
We are loyal to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church and founded on ecumenical Catholic principles, which should be respected, but need not be accepted. Our classes are open to all homeschoolers, regardless of religious orientation, but parents should be aware that classes will be taught from a Catholic perspective. If you are not Catholic and are interested in HFLC, but feel concerned about how our Catholic faith is expressed during our learning day, please contact us, we’d love to discuss it with you!
My student is ahead of/behind his traditional grade level peers, can he enroll in a different grade level? Yes. Our grade levels are a guideline based on the age grouping found in a traditional school and serve as a starting point. We will work with you to find a grade level that suits your child’s needs. Children can move up or down during the year depending on what would serve them best. Learning Center staff and parents work together to determine placement for each child. Our program is intended to serve your family's needs, not put your child in a box.
My child has special needs. Is there a place for him at Holy Family Learning Center? Yes. From our Educational Philosophy in our Handbook: Learners of all abilities will be accommodated as needed based on collaboration between tutor and parent. It is our goal to make the Learning Center a safe environment where children are accepted and encouraged in a way that best suits their needs.
We currently serve students with different learning challenges and it is a joy to include them in our community. If you have a child with learning challenges and would like to discuss how we include all learners at HFLC, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Are you in compliance with the Common Core standards? No. Homeschoolers are not subject to the Common Core standards. Math and reading instruction are provided by parents using curriculum of their choosing. Most parents also provide handwriting, language arts, and writing instruction, depending on their children’s grade level/needs.
In the spirit of the Classical Trivium we follow the 4 year cycle of History, with the first year covering Ancient History, the second year covering the Middle Ages/Medieval times, the third year covering the 19th Century, and the fourth year covering Modern Times. Church History will be incorporated into the history curriculum and Saints of each time period will be covered. The entire school will cover each time period simultaneously, with the information being presented at an age appropriate level for each class. Literature selections will also coincide with the time period being covered. Science is covered in a four year cycle as well, with the Scientific discipline covered during a particular year being aligned with what would have been observable during the time period being studied in History. Life Sciences/Biology are covered during Ancient History, Astronomy/Earth Science are covered during the middle ages, Chemistry is covered during the 19th Century, and Physics during modern times.
Do I need to stay at the Learning Center while classes are in session? No, you do not need to stay at the Learning Center while classes are in session. We ask that each family have a parent or other family member volunteer two half days per month. If you have other children not enrolled in classes they are welcome in the nursery. For more details on Parent Responsibilities, please read our Handbook.
Do you go on field trips or host other special events? We try to schedule field trips that relate to our studies on days that class is not in session. Throughout the year we also try to bring in special programming when we feel it will benefit our students. A summary of any field trip and special programming is provided to families at least one week prior to the event and parents can choose to participate or opt out as they see fit.
Do my children have to complete homework? There are homework assignments given by teachers to help prepare students for classroom discussions and to provide background information for demonstrations and experiments. Homework assignments are geared more towards preparing for class activities as opposed to checking for understanding. The week's assignments are listed in the Student Center section of this website.
My children have allergies. Will they be safe at Holy Family Learning Center? We currently have students enrolled who have severe peanut and tree nut allergies. In order to protect these students we are a peanut and tree nut free center. Please contact us with any concerns you have regarding allergies.
I have a nursing infant/toddler, is there someplace I can wait while my students are in class? Yes. As part of our commitment to Family Centered Education, we have a nursery that is available to our staff and to parents volunteering in the Learning Center. You are welcome to stay in the nursery with your small children to reduce your trips to and from the learning center as well.
How much does Holy Family Learning Center Cost? Do you provide discounts for multiple children? Information on Registration and Tuition can be found here. We do not offer family discounts, but we do offer opportunities to fundraise and are working to fundraise as a center in order to make our program accessible to as many families as possible.
How can I keep up with what’s going on at Holy Family Learning Center? Sign up for our Newsletter!
If you have any other questions that are not covered here please take a look at the documents listed under the Parent Resources tab. If you’d like to discuss something regarding your individual family’s needs, don’t hesitate to contact us.