Home Independent Study for Kindergarten through Grade 8
Glendale Unified School District provides a dynamic independent study option for families who choose to educate their children at home. We understand that many parents wish to be an integral part of their child’s education in a setting they feel is most conducive to learning – their own home environment. Through Verdugo Academy’s Home Independent Study program, parents can directly supervise and facilitate their children’s continuing educational growth, with professional guidance from certified teaching and administrative personnel, and the resources of this highly regarded school district.
Home Independent Study is designed to assist parents in meeting their children’s personal and educational needs through an alternative to classroom instruction. The curriculum is the same high quality course of study offered at schools in the Glendale Unified School District. It is not an alternative curriculum. The same state-approved texts and instructional materials used in District schools are provided free of charge to families in this program. Our teachers work directly with parents and students to coordinate the educational plan, recommend and model proven instructional strategies, and evaluate student progress. The result is that parents, students and supervising teachers form a team to optimize student learning. Supported in this way, students have an opportunity to pursue their academics in an alternative environment, to be challenged to excel in areas of special interest, and to achieve competency in basic skills. Parents will find that a network of support also exists for them, not only from District personnel and resources, but from other parents who home-school their children.
Courses of Study and Student Evaluation
All subjects specified in the California Education Code are offered to participants in this program. The courses are entirely aligned to state and national standards of educational excellence, and are equal in quality and scope to curriculum provided for students enrolled in traditional classroom settings in the Glendale Unified School District. All subjects are organized in 18-week semester courses, just as they are at traditional schools. All instructional materials, including student textbooks and teacher materials, are provided on-loan free of charge. In addition, students may participate in special programs at District school sites when parents request this, providing that the participation meets all regulations and guidelines to which the activity is subject, and space in the program is available. Such programs may include music, sports, foreign language classes, or other specific educational opportunities.
Parents and teachers work together to evaluate student progress, and semester grades are entered into the school record, which then serves as an official transcript for students. Students may demonstrate progress through a wide variety of work, including completed assignments and projects, written tests and reports, oral presentations, standardized national tests and other competency assessments. Home Independent Study students are included in the California CAASPP testing program, given each spring to all students enrolled in grades 3 through 8. The reports generated by each student’s test results may be used by parents as an additional and informative evaluation of student progress and achievement, as measured on a nationally-normed examination.
After a brief orientation meeting to introduce families to the various aspects of this program, parents, students, and the supervising teacher meet weekly to discuss assignments and review student progress. During the appointment time, the teacher assists parents with instructional and assessment strategies and teaching methodologies, as needed. Student work assigned at the prior appointment is evaluated as to completeness and quality, and formal and informal assessments of progress are given. Parents and the teacher discuss the assignments for the next period of work for all subject areas, and the next appointment date is set. Parents may also contact the consulting teacher at any time by phone or email if further assistance or clarification is needed.
Parents of students participating in the Home Independent Study option through Verdugo Academy will find that the same level of support the Glendale Unified School District provides for families enrolled in traditional schools also exists for them. This includes academic counseling services, access to Healthy Kids and Healthy Start programs.