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Connections Academy? Keystone School?

Connections Academy? Keystone School?

Anyone have experience or opinions of Connections Academy, state run? Or Keystone High School, which is private run.

re: Connections Academy? Keystone School?

I have an opinion about Connections Academy: I think most homeschoolers would do well to avoid public school programs. Legally, these programs are not homeschooling--they are public schools--and they are one way for the government to control our children's education in a more covert fashion than trying to pass legislation on homeschooling.

How's that for a Monday morning statement? ;-)

re: Connections Academy? Keystone School?

I think Connections Academy is fine if you are a fan of public schools and the only reason the child needs to homeschool is that he cannot physically attend school for some reason.

Otherwise, it is a public school and uses ps curriculum, teaching methods, etc., and does not provide any real advantages that traditional homeschooling provides. The main reasons homeschoolers excel academically are that the parent is involved in curriculum selection, spends 1:1 time teaching the child, etc. Also, the test scores of those who attend public virtual schools are nowhere near as high as the students who homeschool with traditional methods.

re: Connections Academy? Keystone School?

i studied Connections Academy a couple of years ago..looked at the texts they are using (it's posted in their course descriptions) and the curriculum guide. it's a very , very academic program and i see no flaws...except (and these are only a big deal if they are a big deal to YOU):

it's a secular program, so void of any faith-based teaching.

it's a public school program and you will be required to submit paperwork or work online and meet deadlines and meet requirements as you would if your child attended public school (which for me, isn't a problem...we've used Abeka academy....but it doesn't provide the "freedom" of home schooling at your own pace)..

you cannot choose curriculum/texts..that is done for you..which might not be a problem for you....but for MANY home schoolers, they don't like to lose that choice/control.

on the other hand, if you have a child who would do better at home (perhaps you are pulling from public school) and you don't mind doing what 'someone" else prescribes for you in terms of education for your child and meeting deadlines, then it might be very okay.

the program itself is academically VERY solid. I was impressed with that.

re: Connections Academy? Keystone School?

Are you from PA? I'm asking b/c of the "Keystone" question. I'm from PA and I'm looking into PA Cyber for the fall. They use mostly a curriculum called Lincoln interactive, for virtual courses, but for non-virtual courses they use Calvert. HTH,

Joy

re: Connections Academy? Keystone School?

We used CA for one year, about 4 years ago. The biggest reason we tried it was because it was free. I think if you are new to homeschooling, you might like it (and as others stated....it *isn't* homeschooling, it's public school at home). The hardest thing for me was that I couldn't choose what I wanted to use. We had to answer to someone (which isn't necessarily a bad thing; depends on how you look at it). It is not at your own pace (which they seemed to make you believe). The curriculum has changed from when we used it, so it looks like there have been definite improvements in that area. But.....still.....I like to choose what I want to use. I think my choices are better, LOL! I think there was a lot of work that was just busy-work and silly (sometimes stupid) that I would have never required my kids to do had they just been homeschooling. We had to travel about an hour away to do testing (our state doesn't require it for homeschooling). There were never any field trips that we could go on with the group because we lived too far away from anything. So, I would recommend it to someone new just starting out. But....if you've already been homeschooling for years it might be a tough thing to adjust to. Like everything, there are pros and cons.

ETA: I just reread your post and it seems like you might be looking at this for High School. Our state doesn't offer if for High School, only through 8th grade. So...I can't personally comment on the High School courses (they are obviously much different than the elementary and middle school courses). So, I guess I wasn't much help at all. LOL!

This post was edited on Mar 29, 2010 12:54 PM

re: Connections Academy? Keystone School?

I live in Texas and they just announced that they plan to offer Connections for high school in Texas.

I am so lost on high school curriculum that I am not caring about choice so much. I have younger children and would never use Connections or any other program like that as I love the control I have. I love that we can study when I want, how I want, etc. I would never have tolerated something like Connections for prior to high school.

I just feel like I have no clue about high school and with keeping up with the younger children, I am not sure what to do with the high schoolers. But they have homeschooled a long time and their education has been great and they have top test scores (ITBS). I don't want to lose that now.

re: Connections Academy? Keystone School?

If I were in your position, then I would also consider it. As you mentioned, and as I also said before, I wouldn't have wanted to use it in the younger grades either. But, High School to me would be a different story. I also had no idea what I was going to do for High School. It might be a very good choice for you. You can always at least try it and see. I believe you can leave whenever you want to, if you feel it wasn't working. Hope it all works out.

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