When I was a kid, only extremists seemed to home school their children. In the Midwest where I grew up, it wasn’t mainstream from what I remember. Upon moving to Oregon 20 years ago I realized there was an entire culture of home school educators that I knew nothing about. Homeschooling is fairly common out here. We have parents that home school for religious reasons, have children with special needs who do better at home, and those that just love teaching their children. I think Oregon is a fairly home school friendly state where parents won’t get weird looks other than “don’t you need a break from your kids?” kind of look.
Homeschoolers have some specific rules they have to follow in Oregon and you can read the rules at the Oregon Department of Education site. There is also excellent information at the Oregon Home Educators Network site as well.
Some of our supports for homeschoolers are:
Oregon Home is a Yahoo! Group.
SHINE This is the Salem Homeschool Independent Network of Educators
SASH is the Salem Area Support for Homeschoolers
ORChristianHS is a Christian homeschooling group
LDS-OHEA is for Latter Day Saints.
There is also a “online” home school that is technically a charter school. It is a hybrid model that has teachers that are available by phone and via online conferences for help. The core curriculum is given to parents, and this is a great option for parents that need a lot of structure or are nervous about home schooling.
If you are considering moving to Salem Oregon and want to home school your children, consider checking out some of the local resources.