Homeschooling During COVID

Quick Overview

Virginia Spencer, an IEP liaison, special education advocate, and parent coach, discusses homeschooling during COVID. She highlights the challenges of virtual instruction, such as privacy concerns, screen fatigue, and difficulties with navigating online platforms. She suggests parents consider homebound services or proportionate share services for children with an IEP. For homeschooling, she advises creating a distraction-free, organised learning environment and having a curriculum that aligns with state learning objectives. She emphasises the importance of communication, literacy development, behaviour management, motor skills development, and addressing health considerations. She also advises parents to take care of their mental health, prioritise tasks, and seek social support.

Hello FAST families and welcome to homeschooling during COVID. My name’s Virginia Spencer and I’m here today to talk to you about how you can create a learning environment at home for your child.

About the Author

I’m the IEP liaison for FAST, a special education advocate, and a parent coach for behaviour training. I’m here to help you navigate the process of having your child evaluated and coming up with an appropriate program. I also assist in disputes, IEP meetings, and securing the most appropriate services that a child needs.

The Challenges of Virtual Instruction

Virtual instruction has its drawbacks. Some children struggle with privacy concerns, screen fatigue, and navigating online platforms. If you’re considering homeschooling, there are a few options available to you.

Homeschooling Options

If your child has an IEP, you can ask the IEP team if homebound services would be an appropriate placement. If your child hasn’t been placed in the school system yet, you can ask for an evaluation. If you want to withdraw your child from the school system, you can get proportionate share services if you want them.

Creating a Learning Environment at Home

When homeschooling, it’s important to create an environment that is free from distractions and is organised. You also need to have a curriculum in place. Contact your state’s homeschool coalition for help with homeschooling requirements.

Communication and Literacy Development

Communication is key to learning. Augmentative and alternative communication devices can facilitate communication. There are also programs available that can facilitate literacy development.

Behaviour Interventions

Behaviour is a form of communication. It’s important to determine the function of a child’s behaviour and introduce new communication strategies. Always include your child’s psychologist in any conversation about behaviour interventions.

Motor Skills and Health Considerations

Consider your child’s motor skills and health conditions when creating a homeschooling schedule. Your child’s neurologist and occupational therapist can provide guidance in these areas.

Parent Self-Care

Parents need self-care too. Schedule breaks for yourself and consider family counselling if you’re struggling to prioritise. Mindfulness can help manage stress and seek social support from other parents.

Please contact me with any questions about this presentation. I hope you enjoyed it and I look forward to meeting everybody in the chat after the presentation. Thank you.

Talk details

  • Title: Homeschooling During COVID
  • Author(s): Virginia Spencer
  • Author(s)’ affiliation: Lumen Advocacy
  • Publication date: 2020-12-31
  • Collection: 2020 FAST Educational Summit