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16-year-old Mom Wants a Diploma

Homeschooling Expert Advice from Isabel Shaw

Q: I'm a 16-year-old mother-to-be and I want to know if homeschooling through the mail would be possible without having a tutor come to me. I have a job at a law firm and am getting paid good money. My fiance is going to nursing school. If I homeschool, I could maintain the baby and myself while he's in class. He's already graduated from high school, and I am going to be in the tenth grade.

A: Homeschooling could be a very good option for you. However, you must have help and support from family and/or friends. I know I could not have handled a new baby and a full course of study without a lot of help. It's hard to imagine how much time is spent caring for a tiny infant those first few months, and how unbelievably tired you are when you're not caring for him or her. After a few months, it all falls into place, but don't be disappointed if you don't accomplish everything you hoped to in the very beginning.

There are many correspondence schools, private schools, and online schools that offer high-school courses and a diploma. I have a young friend who uses Clonlara School (clonlara.org) and loves it. Clonlara is very loosely structured, and allows you to utilize some of your real-life experiences and turn them into high-school credits. They are also very supportive of their students, and will offer help and guidance so you can obtain your diploma.

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Isabel Shaw is a freelance writer and homeschooling mom of 15 years. She and her husband Ray homeschool their two daughters, Jessica and Amanda. Besides being a contributor to FamilyEducation.com, Shaw has written for Home Education Magazine, The Link, Homeschooling Horizons Magazine, The Homeschool Gazette, and other publications.


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