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Home » CHFWeb Forum » HomeSchool » TN Umbrella School Recommendations
TN Umbrella School Recommendations [message #208835] Sat, 13 January 2007 22:09 Go to next message
Cammie  is currently offline Cammie
Messages: 2292
Registered: April 2005
Location: Tennessee
Senior Member
Do any of you TN ladies have recommendations of what Umbrella School you use. I would like to know why you like them or why you did not like a particular school please.

Cammie


Cammie
I recommend Home Life Academy [message #208848 is a reply to message #208835 ] Sat, 13 January 2007 23:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lunchlady  is currently offline lunchlady
Messages: 948
Registered: April 2005
Location: tennessee
Senior Member
I moved to TN from TX and chose Home Life Academy based upon recommendations from a lady I "met" over the internet and the speed with which Home Life Academy answered my questions about homeschooling in TN. Although truthfully, I figured they were all pretty much the same. However, when a close friend watched me do some things online with HLA, she was amazed. She and three other friends ended up switching to HLA. So, I guess not all umbrella schools are the same, even if they operate under tier 3 of TN HS law.

Anyway, here is what *I* like.

1. I can report my grades on line through a special site & program. I can enter classes, descriptions, grades for transcripts--it calculates the GPA as I enter. It allows me to see their transcript if I so choose. Also, I can enter info for their activities and standardized test scores to go into their portfolio. You can even enter their immunization records.

2. When you need a transcript (for college applications or whatever), you will receive a profession looking document from HLA. From what I understand, some other umbrella schools send out handwritten transcripts, which I personally wouldn't want. If I had stayed in TX, I would have made a typed transcript with as professional a look as possible--by myself for my DC. So, I want to choose an umbrella that will do at least the same level that I would have done.

3. HLA has been very quick to respond to any and all questions. I think most every time I've heard back from them the same day I've contacted them (if I had to leave a message over the phone or wrote an email). They've always been friendly and Christ-like in all my dealings with them.

4. HLA is a church based umbrella.

5. And HLA operates under the 3rd tier of TN homeschool law, meaning that we don't have to report to anyone else, other than HLA. HLA doesn't require any standardized testing or any other hoops they require of you.

6. HLA has guidance counselors that you can talk to if needed. I haven't had to yet, but am glad that they're available if I need them.

Lisa
Re: TN Umbrella School Recommendations [message #209276 is a reply to message #208835 ] Mon, 15 January 2007 11:26 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kiwicampbell  is currently offline kiwicampbell
Messages: 487
Registered: November 2005
Senior Member
Hey there,
When I first started to homeschool I was with Gateway and I have since switched to HomeLife Academy.

There was nothing "wrong" with Gateway but everything was done by mail or taking i in to the office. As a result responses were slow for questions and it was more complex and time consuming to keep up with.

HomeLife Academy have counselors and respond very quickly to any questions. Everything can be done online including records and reporting and really they do not require very much. They do not require testing which is something I wanted. However they can help you get testing if you want that...just do not require it. I am very happy with HomeLife Academy.
www.homelifeacademy.com

Blessings,
Sharelle in Memphis
Re: TN Umbrella School Recommendations [message #209299 is a reply to message #208835 ] Mon, 15 January 2007 12:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
mom22
Messages: 199
Registered: April 2005
Senior Member
I have been with Gateway for 8 years and have no complaints. I've looked at HomeLife and it seems to be very much like Gateway. I guess doing everything online would be easier but it really isn't very hard to mail in some papers a couple times a year.

My biggest hesitation about going with HomeLife is that it is relatively new and I can't help but wonder how long it might be around. Gateway has been around for a long time AND Gateway is an actual school that I believe will be around for a long time to come. HomeLife might not be around "forever."

Just my thoughts on it - I do recommend Gateway to anyone that asks. Smile


Carla in E TN
ds - 21
dd - 13
Re: TN Umbrella School Recommendations [message #209388 is a reply to message #208835 ] Mon, 15 January 2007 15:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Karen in TN  is currently offline Karen in TN
Messages: 2038
Registered: April 2005
Location: TN
Senior Member
Cammie,
I have done both Gateway and a place called Aaron Academy that is in Hendersonville, just north of Nashville. My 7th grader is actually with Gateway still and my 9th grader I switched to Aaron this year. I haven't really had much experience with Aaron. I liked Gateway because they were low pressure and did not require testing.

I switched my 9th grader because I thought if I needed help with high school then I could drive up there and actually talk with a human face and they also have a graduation at a local church if my son decides he wants to do that. They do require testing, but honestly, I thought my son needed the experience of a "group test" before he has to take the ACT. They test locally since they are based pretty close.

I don't like Aaron's HIGH SCHOOL requirement that you must finish the book before you can count it as a credit. It is really stressing me out and I feel like if I, the homeschool parent, does not consider a part of the book important enough to warrant spending time on it, or we decide to veer off and study something in depth then I should be able to choose that. With Aaron, as far as I understand, we would HAVE to finish the book in order to count it. A couple of other moms in my group have this same stress and one that knows the folks who run it said we need to talk to her about the wording so we could have a little authority in that department. They are super nice though and she came and talked to our support group-very knowledgeable and they had just had a dd start college so she had researched requirements,etc extensively.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do next year.

HOpe that helps a little.

What are you looking for specifically?

You do have to send in your info. with both of these umbrellas. I would love to do it online and yet the security end of that unnerves me just a bit.

Karen in TN


wife of 28 years to Richard, Mom to Matthew (22), Adra 20, Shelby 12, Samuel 10, and Ruby Grace 8. Homeschooling for 16 years.
Re: TN Umbrella School Recommendations [message #209460 is a reply to message #209388 ] Mon, 15 January 2007 17:49 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Cammie  is currently offline Cammie
Messages: 2292
Registered: April 2005
Location: Tennessee
Senior Member
We are with Gateway right now. My concern, was I was told that their transcripts are not very professional looking. My son will be in 7th next year and dh thought that was a good time to switch, as we want him to get some high school credits in 8th grade. This is my son who plans on going to a major 4 year university at this point in life (could change, but trying to be diligent). I want him to have a good looking transcript, after all the work we do.

Cammie


Cammie
Re: TN Umbrella School Recommendations [message #209533 is a reply to message #208835 ] Mon, 15 January 2007 20:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Karen in TN  is currently offline Karen in TN
Messages: 2038
Registered: April 2005
Location: TN
Senior Member
Cammie,

I heard the same about the transcripts. Maybe we should just ask for a sample?

I thought the same thing about Gateway as Mom22. They have been around a LONG time and that makes me feel better.

I have always liked Gateway (9 years) and feel they have a real commitment to homeschoolers.

I have a friend whose dd had a transcript from there and she got accepted at a private college (Cedarville in OH) with no problem. Honestly, I think the majority rests on the ACT/SAT score. That really annoyed me last year when I figured out we really WERE "teaching for the test." Only we're teaching for the ACT instead of the basic skills tests! It bummed me out. It's all like a big game. My nephew is in public school and he actually has a class all year on ACT prep. To me, when you get to that point, then the test has failed its intended purpose. It's about outsmarting the test instead of measuring what the kids know.

Karen in TN
















wife of 28 years to Richard, Mom to Matthew (22), Adra 20, Shelby 12, Samuel 10, and Ruby Grace 8. Homeschooling for 16 years.
Re: TN Umbrella School Recommendations [message #209602 is a reply to message #208835 ] Mon, 15 January 2007 23:27 Go to previous message
mom22
Messages: 199
Registered: April 2005
Senior Member
I've not heard that about Gateway's transcripts but I'll ask around and see if I can find someone who has had a student graduate from Gateway and find out what the transcript looks like.

Karen is right in that the ACT and/or SAT scores are what is really important to a college.

Even though Gateway does not require testing (and one thing I liked about it because I want to decide about testing - not be told to do it), I have had my ds tested each year since 4th grade. But, it is our choice. Main reason we had him tested was to get him used to being tested in a group setting so that when he takes the ACT and/or SAT, it won't be any big deal.

[Updated on: Mon, 15 January 2007 23:28]


Carla in E TN
ds - 21
dd - 13
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