I recently received an email about K12 and thought it would be a good topic to share for homeschooling discussion, especially if you’re new to home school.
Here’s the email:
“Hi. I’m new to homeschooling and I keep seeing a lot of information about K12. Do you have any experience with K12 and is it a good option for homeschooling?”
So . . . what is k 12 homeschooling?
Before we get to that, let’s answer:
What does K12 mean?
K12 refers to Kindergarten through 12th grade. They are programs that cover the entire span of a child’s 12 years of basic schooling. It is often pronounced K12, or K through twelve, or even K to twelve.
Now, let’s take a closer look at the K12 company . . .
What Is The K 12 Education System?
It specializes in providing online classes for children in grades kindergarten through grade 12.
K12 provides an alternative to the traditional “brick-and-mortar” public school.
It does this through:
- Tuition-free online public school
- Paid private school options
- Supplemental paid courses
These are all completed online.
You oversee or track your child’s work through a K12 parent portal.
K12 versus Homeschooling
A main difference that you need to understand is that homeschooling is very different from schooling at home.
Homeschooling means that you have total control over your child’s education and are only governed by your state (or area) laws on homeschooling—which can range by state from strict to very relaxed in the United States.
In online, virtual school at home programs, many—like the K12 online school—are affiliated with public school programs.
So, essentially your child is doing public school, just from home.
This is why many virtual, “home school” programs are tuition free—they are associated with public school (which your taxes cover).
This means that you must meet the same standards (and testing requirements) as public schools for your area.
From the K12 website:
Online public schools are not homeschools, nor are the students who attend online schools considered “homeschooled.” In fact, there are many differences.
Most K12-powered online public schools:
Have state-certified public school teachers
Comply with mandatory state assessment test requirements
Comply with state attendance policies and academic progress requirements
Have a school office for administrative staff
Have an established curriculum determined by the school
Issue lesson and course grades, transcripts, report cards, and conduct parent conferences
Have strong school administrators (e.g., principal, assistant principal, etc.)
Comply with applicable state and federal academic and fiscal accountability requirements
Is K12 a homeschooling program?
Are All K12 Classes Affiliated With Public School?
According to their website, K12 does offer some paid stand-alone online classes that you can use to supplement your homeschooling.
Independent courses are offered in:
- Language arts
These classes do not appear to be affiliated with public or private schools, but be sure to check with them for verification before signing up.
Is K12 homeschooling free?
K12 public school is tuition free; however, there may be some associated costs for extras. Just check with the company before signing up.
There are also paid private school versions of K12 and the supplemental online courses also have fees associated with them.
• CONCLUSION •
Should I Use K12 for Home School?
So, should you try K12 for homeschooling?
It all depends on how you want to tailor your homeschool and how much control you want over homeschooling.
Both homeschool and virtual public schools (like K12) are valid options for learning at home.
You just need to decide:
Do I want complete and total control over my homeschooling?
Do I want a public (or private) school system to provide all the lessons and also follow their reporting and testing standards?
As with any major parenting decision, you need to give careful consideration to the pros and cons of both methods.
NEED MORE? Read independent parent K12 reviews on the Consumer Affairs website.
More Homeschooling Help
These homeschool blogs will also help you with making a decision between homeschooling and schooling at home: