Louisville Magazine

NOV 2016

Louisville Magazine is Louisville's city magazine, covering Louisville people, lifestyles, politics, sports, restaurants, entertainment and homes. Includes a monthly calendar of events.

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LOUISVILLE MAGAZINE 11.16 43 Tebow because he was home-schooled in Florida, where the law allowed him to play on a public-school team, was introduced in Kentucky last year. It failed to pass. Tennessee requires home-schoolers to submit attendance records and proof of vaccinations every year. e parents must have a high-school diploma or GED in order to home-school. And testing is required for grades five, seven and nine. If a student tests below grade level for two years or more in a row, the superin- tendent may require the kids to enroll in public school. In Ohio, a licensed teacher administers a nationally normed test to home-school students. Parents must list the courses and textbooks when they notify the district. As with Tennessee, the home-school parent must have a GED or high-school diploma. Ohio home-school students can participate in public-school sports, and students have the option of being a part-time student in the pub- lic-school district. While Kentucky has more lax home-school requirements, which date back to the late 1800s, not long after Louisville had established its public school system, JCPS does not allow part-time students. Brent Lynch says that while home schooling could be beneficial for certain families and students, in some cases home schooling may not be the best option for students. "When I was a teacher, a (certain) kid was home-schooled up until his freshman year of high school. He was dyslexic and couldn't read. In JCPS we have a lot of professionals for MMD (mild mental disability) or autism. But for those with school anxiety, where a school envi- ronment is not suitable, home schooling is a better fit. It's a very fine line and you don't want to infringe on parents' rights. "Venture to say there are probably some kids out there not being properly home- schooled. We don't know until we receive a call." Lynch says he got maybe two calls last year about a home-school student going into foster care for educational neglect. Britta Stokes goes to the JCPS show- case of schools every fall. "e only input I got from JCPS was how busing works and how to get kids into different programs. e conversation I want to have is: What are they gonna learn?" she says. Over the years, she applied to Lincoln for its performing-arts magnet, and Kennedy and Coleridge-Taylor for the Montessori programs. Neither of her two kids ever got in. She was unimpressed with the resides school near their house in Fern Creek. After attending a private Montessori preschool, Eilieh Stokes started the Catho- lic school path at St. Bernard, where the family attends church. On a gray October evening I meet with the Stokes family at their home in Fern Creek. Two years ago they built a shed in the backyard. Britta's disabled mother had moved in with them and the shed allowed the kids to escape the hubbub of the house. e bright blue structure, insulated and with air and heat units, resembles a tiny house. Inside, maps are pinned to the bare-wood walls, facing a table, chairs and bookshelves. Eilieh is what you might expect an artistic 16-year-old girl to look like, with short blond hair and a Led Zeppelin T-shirt and jeans with paint on them. Eilieh first presented issues as a kinder- gartener. At least one day a week, Britta would have to pick her up from school early to mitigate her chronic emotional breakdowns. She and her husband learned early on that Eilieh was intellectually gifted. When she was sitting in her car seat, she looked up at a sign on Bardstown Road and said, "Copycat Video." e wit- nesses, her mother and aunt, were shocked at Eilieh's first words. Continued on page 146 Jackie Hawkins with her husband and children.

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