Frequently asked questions
What is traditional home education?
Traditional home education is a program that is exclusively parent-directed. This means you as the parent choose the academic subjects, curriculum, and activities for your child. A traditional, parent-directed approach is the one with the most parental freedom and the least teacher involvement. A home education facilitator, who is a certified teacher, is legally required to make two visits a year.
What is different about Roots vs other home education programs?
We are a specifically Christian home education provider because we desire to serve you by fostering a community of home educating believers who will befriend, support, and uphold one another. We are also an exclusively traditional parent-directed provider, with all our staff having prior traditional home education experience!
How do I get plugged into the Roots community?
There are many ways to get plugged in. At the beginning of the year, there is a family directory circulated via email. Be friendly and reach out to other families! If you live in the Calgary area, there is a monthly support group. Edmonton support groups are available subject to interest and numbers. There is also a Google chat through which parents can connect with other parents for all things home education. If you live in the Edmonton area, please contact your principal-at-large for more information.
When is registration open?
Registration opens each year opens in May and closes for funding Sept 30th.
Does Roots provide curriculum to families?
No, it does not. There are, however, many people to ask advice from when you are choosing curriculum. Other parents as well as your home education facilitator are always available to consult about home education curriculum.
How much time do I need to home educate?
There is no one right answer to this question because there are so many questions you need to answer first:
1. What do you call home education? Is it just the time spent with the books or does in also include devotions, family activities, field trips, sports, home economics, time talking about issues in the car or at the table, etc.
2. What are your goals for your child?
3. How old is your child? The older a child is, the longer time they will normally need to complete their work and the more independent they will need to be in order to function.
4. How old is your child? The older a child is, the longer time they will normally need to complete their work and the more independent they will need to be in order to function.
With traditional home education with Roots can my kids take lessons/classes from outside sources?
Definitely! There are many facilities that do homeschool classes/activities during the day, as well as people who do private lessons. Sometime the challenge can be to find them; however, asking other home educators around you will usually yield a reward of several options.
How & when can we claim funds?
Roots will email out a package to parents that includes a digital
reimbursement form with instructions to follow. Roots begins reimbursing for school items in October
and the final reimbursements are completed May 30th. From October to May the deadline is the first
Monday of each month and May 30th.
How do I decide what curriculum to use?
There are so many choices out there! Feel free to read page 3
of our booklet Starting your Homeschool Journey (link to document) for some practical tips in choosing
curriculum. You can also read page 7, which provides a summary of some of the popular styles of home
education, in order to help inform your decisions. For helpful reviews on various curriculum, visit
https://cathyduffyreviews.com/ . Also, feel free to consult your facilitator or other mothers on what
works for them!
Can I buy curriculum now for the next school year and still be reimbursed?
Yes, you can. Just make
sure that the products you buy link to your child’s Program Plan.
Where can we purchase curriculum?
Places like CHER, The Learning House, Sunlight, Northwoods
Press and Christianbook.com sell new books from all types of curriculum companies. Specific companies
such as A Beka Book, Bob Jones University Press, Saxon, Apologia, ACE, Rod and Staff etc., sell their own
Does a traditional home educated student receive an Alberta High School Diploma?
No, a traditional
student will not receive an Alberta high school diploma.
What support can you offer to families who are traditional home educating through high school?
Roots facilitators are highly knowledgeable regarding home education through high school and are
always willing to be consulted. Additionally, we encourage parents of high school age children to attend
the Alberta Home Educators’ Association convention, at which there is a high school age stream of
sessions that are excellent resources for teens looking to post-secondary education.
How do they get into post secondary institutions without it?
This is a complex question, one that has
many answers. I would preface this by first saying that the Lord has a plan for your child’s life, and home
educating is not going to ruin it. It is all part of God’s great plan, and His plan does not always play out in
the way we hope or expect it to. Pray and have faith that the Lord will provide the right place in His
timing. Here are some ideas to make the transition into university:
1. Ask your home education board for a high school transcript for your child. Your board will work
with you to get this done.
2. Create a portfolio of the high school courses that your child has done. Put anything that could be
relevant into it, and even things that may not be relevant but will demonstrate love of learning,
citizenship and a good work ethic. Go heavier on the subjects you know your child’s program of
choice will most value, including projects and reports with excellent marks. A fantastic way to
show learning is to photocopy the table of contents of their high school textbooks.
3. Look into post-secondary institutions that are “homeschool friendly”. Kings University and
Concordia are among the many institutions that are. These institutions recognize what an asset
to them a home educated student is and are willing to accept them with minimal hassle.
4. Check into what an institution’s entrance requirements are. There are sometimes ways to
demonstrate without credits that your child has done an equivalent to those high school classes.
If you feel the admission requirements are too rigid or too “government program oriented” for
your student, you can always work to get certain requirements waived or changed.
5. Prior to entrance, the student must be willing to make meetings with the Dean of his program of
choice and take the opportunity to build relationships while demonstrating academic and social
competence, confidence, and persistence. A dean will not call you to let you know you have been
accepted. You call the dean again...and again...and again until you get an answer.
6. Do some essential post-secondary classes with an online university (Athabasca University has
been a preferred choice with home educators for many years) and use them to transfer into your
university of choice. NOTE: If you are going to do this, make sure that you find out and get a
letter from that university confirming that the course your child takes at AU will successfully
transfer into the program of choice. A helpful resource to do some preliminary checking is
Transfer Alberta http://transferalberta.alberta.ca/transfer-alberta-search/#/searchTypeStep .
7. A post-secondary institution may ask your student to take a General Education Diploma (GED).
Can my high school student write diploma exams?
Yes, there is an opportunity to do this. Roots has a
partnership with The Alberta Distance Learning Centre (ADLC), through which students can write diploma