5 Ways to Make Homeschooling Safe for Kids
Do you want your children to have a positive, productive homeschooling experience? There are several things you can do to make certain they do. From starting your own program to downloading a virtual private network, there are plenty of major and minor steps you can take to make a home-based education run smoothly and safety.
Earn a Degree and Start Your Own School
Not satisfied with local or online options for your youngsters? Consider applying for a permit to operate a home school of your own, with you as the main, or only, instructor. In most cases, you’ll need a college degree. The major doesn’t matter as long as it’s a bachelor’s diploma from an accredited college or university. If money is tight, don’t worry. You can apply for a private student loan online, and help pay for college before your studies even begin. The advantage of a private educational loan is that you can literally do comparison shopping for rates, terms, and lenders.
Avoid Virtual Green Screens
The rooms in your home, from kitchens to dens to bedrooms include all sorts of private, identifiable background objects like wall hangings, diplomas, family photos, and more. It’s unwise to allow strangers a full view of your personal space. There are apps that can blow up screen shots and see items as small as digits on an exposed credit card lying on a table in plain view. The solution? Spend $10 on a roll-up green screen that you can hoist behind computer chairs. Then, simply decide on what background you prefer and download that view from any of the hundreds of free green screen websites.
Use a VPN
Virtual private networks (VPNs) not long ago were costly affairs and technically tricky to apply to digital education events. Nowadays, you can download free VPNs for temporary and occasional use, and the technical challenges are minimal. What good is a VPN? It prevents others users from accessing your computer’s private, digital address. Like social security numbers, IP addresses are unique to every computer. It’s best not to reveal yours unless you have to. A VPN takes care of the problem simply, and for no cost.
First Names Only
There are some exceptions, but the general rule is to not use last names. Instructors know everyone’s full name but there’s no need for students to have that, or any other personal, sensitive information about classmates. Home-based schools often share video sessions with outside entities for the purpose of taking virtual field trips and the like. So, there are very good reasons for protecting privacy and keeping not just names but email addresses, phone numbers, and physical addresses confidential.
Dox the Instructors
Triple-check the background, education, and other essential information about your child’s teachers. Many of today’s home schools use freelance instructors via live video feed. Remember, your kids will be spending hours of alone time with these adults, so you’d best find out about things like teaching credentials, experience, and references. You’re actually inviting strange adults into your home when you let unknown instructors teach your children, so do your due diligence.