Re: K12.com Homeschooling?
Free cyber schools are an option here in Philadelphia and I am thrilled I didn't find out about them until I started homeschooling on my own.
You are right the cyber school provides the computer (on loan), the books, the field trips and lots of support.
Even though the student is learning at home, cyber schools will be quick to say this is NOT homeschooling. They are considered public school students (w/ the cybers I know), and cyber school students don't have to follow state homeschooling laws.
Some families LOVE cyber schools. They love that everything is all spelled out for them, what you have to do each day. They provide lots of support to help you and there are several social opportunities. Of course a big draw is they are FREE!
The reason why some families don't like them is you have to do as they say. They tell you when you have to attend certain on-line sessions, they tell you when certain assignments have to be turned in and w/ one K12 program here in PA the parent isn't considered the teacher, he/she is the coach and the k12 staff is the teacher. A few people on here and in real life said they hated the busy work and thought they were promised one thing but reality since they started the program was another.
The reason why I say I am thrilled I didn't find out about it before we started doing our own thing is because if I would have heard FREE, I would say sign me up right now. The cyber school wouldn't have worked w/ our family and it might have gotten me to get discouraged and either put my DDs in a brick and mortar school or been a hassle to withdraw them from the cyber to do my own homeschooling.
Like you I love this option is available to parents because families need different options and what works for one doesn't work for another.
Homeschooling doesn't have to be expensive and I would say some cyber school families may spend just as much or more than homeschooling families on materials and/or enrichment opportunities (science program @ the museum, art classes, etc.) Families using the cyber schools may not have to buy a curriculum but they may buy things to compliment the curriculum.
There are many options to having to buy an expensive boxed curriculum. Like buying used and using free resources.
I highly suggest for anyone interested in a cyber school to go to a few of their info sessions and also to talk to as many parents using the program as possible.
Feel free to ask more questions.