Frequently Asked Questions
Maryland Homeschool Resource Network
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Many Paths of Natural Learning - Eastern Shore Umbrella
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Listed below are some of the most frequently asked questions, if your
question is not on this list, please send an email to MPNL@msn.com
Is Many Paths of Natural Learning registered with the Department of Education
Yes, MPNL has been registered since January 6th, 2005. You can go to the Dept of Ed site and
scroll down to Many Paths. http://www.msde.state.md.us/nonpublic/home_instruction/DisplayLocationsByCounty.asp
What makes our Umbrella Group different from the rest
Many Paths does not require you to sign a document of faith, teach religion or belong to a church.
We comply with the Comar 05 law. We are a child led homeschool group, many say they are but
then pull you into curriculum. We do not think curriculum is a bad thing, just that it can lead you
astray from the child led philosophy. We accept all, regardless of your religion or belief. Many
Paths holds the belief that learning is a life long process and homeschooling is a family adventure.
I live on the Eastern Shore, many of the programs you offer are too far away for
me to attend is there a closer chapter?
Yes, contact Angela Bourassa at 410-479-4921 or MPNLEast@Comcast.net
I live in the Western part of Maryland, many of the programs you offer are too far away for
me to attend is there a closer chapter?
Yes, contact Tuesdi Harmon at 301-335-4073 or email@example.com
Where can I get the resources I need for homeschooling my children?
The place to go is Maryland Homeschool Resource Network or http://www.mhrn.com , it's free...
Do I need to sign a Document of Faith?
NO, Many Paths does not require a Document of Faith to be covered under this umbrella group.
What is a Church-Exempt Umbrella
What is required by an Umbrella to oversee home instruction?
These rules are what is require by a umbrella to oversee home instruction.
.05 Home Instruction Under Supervision of Nonpublic School.
A. A parent or guardian may provide instruction for a child at home without compliance
with the requirements of this regulation, other than the requirements of Regulations .01
B(1)(b) and .04 of this chapter, if that instruction is offered through correspondence
courses and is under the supervision of a:
(1) School or institution offering an educational program operated by a bona fide church
organization, and the supervision includes at a minimum all of the following components: (a) Pre-enrollment conferences with parents or guardians, (b) Textbooks, lesson materials, and other instructional materials or equipment designed to be
used independently by the pupil at a site other than a school, (c) Annual visits by supervisory personnel to the site where the pupil is receiving instruction, and (d) Conferences with parents or guardians at appropriate intervals during the period of enrollment;
What is required to place your child back into public school?
COMAR 13A.10.01.04 These rules are what is required to place your child back into the public
school system .
13A.10.01.04 .04 Placement in Public School. Upon application of a child for admission to a public school from a home instruction program, the
local superintendent shall determine by an evaluation the placement of the child and any credits to
be awarded toward high school graduation. The evaluation may include administration of
standardized tests and examinations and interviews with the child.
1.What is meant by the term "church-exempt" school? Maryland law, Education Article, §2-206, Annotated Code of Maryland, exempts nonpublic schools that are governed and operated by a bona fide church organization from holding a Certificate of Approval from the State Board of Education. This means that a church-operated school is not required to meet the educational standards that have been established by the Maryland State Board of Education for nonpublic schools under COMAR 13A.09.09. "Church-exempt" schools must, however, register their operation with the Nonpublic School Approval Branch of the Maryland State Department of Education.
2. Is a church-exempt school required to comply with any approval or licensure requirements? Yes. A church-exempt school is exempt only from education regulations. A church-exempt school, therefore, is not exempt from other applicable local, State, and/or Federal approval or licensure requirements such as zoning ordinances, health department regulations, fire safety regulations, asbestos regulations, criminal background checks, child abuse and neglect reporting law, and child care licensing requirements.
3. What educational standards must a church-exempt school meet? A church-exempt school operates its educational program in accordance with standards that are established by the governing church.
4. Are schools
that are approved by the State Board of Education better than church-exempt
schools? Whether a nonpublic school is approved
by the State Board of Education or is registered as a church-exempt school is
not indicative of the quality of the educational program offered by the
school. An approved nonpublic school has been granted a Certificate of
Approval from the State Board of Education based on demonstration of
compliance with standards established by the State Board of Education.
Approved nonpublic schools and church-exempt schools may establish standards
for their operations which exceed those that have been established by the
State Board of Education. The State Board of Education sets no standards for
5. Will a child's education from a church-exempt school be accepted by an approved nonpublic school, a public school system, or colleges and universities?
It is important for parents to pursue this question with administrators of schools, colleges, and universities they anticipate their child may attend after attending a church-exempt school. Admission policies for schools, colleges, and universities vary widely. Maryland law states that a local public school system may determine through an evaluation of the student whether credits earned at a "nonaccredited" high school will be accepted at the public high school to which the student transfers. Such evaluation may include the administration of tests and examinations; the use of interviews; and the inspection of transcripts, report cards, and other documentation. The law further states that the student will be notified in writing of the reasons for any failure to transfer credits from nonaccredited schools.
6. If an individual is dissatisfied with a church-exempt school, to whom may the individual register the concern or complaint? Any concern or complaint regarding the educational program of a church-exempt school may be addressed to the teacher, administration, or governing board of the church-exempt school. The State Department of Education has no jurisdiction in the resolution of a complaint regarding the educational program of church-exempt schools because church-exempt schools are not subject to the educational requirements of the State Board of Education. Concerns or complaints regarding the facility in which a church-exempt school is housed may be directed to the county health department, the local zoning agency, or the fire marshal's office, as appropriate. Concerns regarding child care operations and/or the welfare of children 4-years-old or younger at church-exempt schools should be directed to the local Child Care Administration of the Department of Human Resources. Concerns regarding child abuse or neglect should be directed to the local Department of Social Services or the police department.
7. Where can an individual call with additional questions regarding church-exempt schools? Additional questions regarding church-exempt schools may be directed to the Nonpublic School Approval Branch of the Maryland State Department of Education in Baltimore by calling (410) 767-0407.
If you would like to know more...
Many Paths of Natural Learning
Many Paths of Natural Learning Support Group
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