June 04, 2023

Homeschool Not-Back-to-School party at Osceola Public Library

Homeschoolers will convene at the Osceola Public Library 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 16.

While Not-Back-to-School gatherings are more prevelant during the first week of public school, this year’s Osceola get-together waited long enough for Children’s Librarian Krista Woodard to introduce one of the library’s newest features.

“In addition to a Q & A time with the Bailey’s, I will be demonstrating to parents some of the resources the library offers that would be helpful for your homeschool and research needs,” said Woodard in an email to parents. “Our newest research database will be Gale, which I will be learning how to use specifically for this meeting.”

Along with getting a first-hand look at the new technological resources available this fall, guests to the celebration will get a chance to hear Joe and Elizabeth Bailey, representatives of Network of Christian Home Educators (NICHE) will present information to families wanting to homeschool in Iowa.

As a lifelong homeschooler and someone involved with the homeschooling community in Iowa since his teen years, and now a father of four, Joe Bailey has sage advice for newcomers.

“Don’t get overwhelmed,” he said. “There’s a lot of options out there. Try something. If it doesn’t work, be willing to try something else.”

Families will be able to take part in crafts set up for the celebration too, and monthly throughout the year during Homeschool Craft Days.

On homeschooling in Iowa

Homeschooling has come under intense criticism over the past year as opponents pointed to relaxed reporting laws. Under Competant Private Instruction (CPI) Option 2 With Opt-Out Reporting and Independent Private Instruction, families may forgo turning in paperwork to the state.

An endless number of options exist for educating children outside the traditional school system. From school-at-home setups using packaged textbooks and online public school programs to child-lead unschooling. The law allows for schooling to take place any day at any time.

“It’s not about being able to pick the perfect curriculum or schedule,” said Joe Bailey, “but of finding what works and learning along with your kids.”

New programs for everyone at the Osceola Public Library

New activity calendars available at the celebration highlight new events and programming available at the library, such as evening family storytime for moms and dads whose schedules don’t allow their children to take part in morning-based programs.