We are still in the midst of this Coronavirus Pandemic. This number of positive cases, hospitalizations and deaths continuing to rise throughout the United States, families are trying to figure what is the best solution on schooling for their children. Now there are pros and cons to each option out there and whatever you decide for your family is 100% up to you and there is no judgement here.
However, I recently saw a couple of mentions of these Pods popping up all around the United States as a way of having a solution. Here is one article I read about it. So basically a Pod is a small group of children being taught by a hired teacher or tutor. Sounds like a great option right? For many yes, especially if they can afford it. I see it being an option in many states that have little to no regulation. Its also a privilege. A single parent, families working paycheck to paycheck or some essential workers may not have the funds to afford it. Its also taking a risk, just like returning back to school whether thats full time or part. Its not everyone’s comfort level, which is totally understandable.
Now speaking legality, being here in New York, its been brought up on being questioned if its legal when New York has some of the strictest Homeschool Regulations in the country. As this is so new I can not find any definite answers, I can tell you that if you are actually Homeschooling (meaning you are registered as a homeschooler through your district) you will need to be careful and be aware that an outside teacher can not teach more than 49% of learning to your child in a group setting. If its a private tutor for only your children then yes 100% of learning may be taught by that private teacher or tutor.
Now is there a difference between a Pod and a Co-op? Yes, Pods can be formed by anyone and are limiting to 4-5 children from what I’ve seen. A Co-Op is an organization or group formed or owned by several families who share responsibilities. You can trade off locations, teaching classes etc. A co- op is not a school and each family is responsible for complying to regulations (paperwork etc) but say your chef like myself, you can offer a cooking class one day for an hour, another family may offer art, or science, etc. It all depends on how you want to run it, schedule and expectations but each family can not go over 49% from another teacher for the school year. Co ops will also cost money but you can budget it based on amount of student, materials and buildings you use if you decided to rent it out.
Now if your still determined to use a pod you may want to look into how to register it as a small private school and get the proper license and paperwork for it. It is a lot so heres the link for you to do more research on your own.
Whatever you decide, best wishes, if your interested in more details on homeschooling, please contact me or check out our zoom meetings.
Stay safe and Stay Healthy.