Your Worst Experience 

Well school is well underway and with it is my son’s first essay of the year. His task: Write about your worst experience.  Enjoy.

Far Fence

Last year, a catastrophic event ensued because my mom had the idea of cycling on the levee in the midst of the summer heat. My family and I thought it was a brilliant idea as we were driving toward Baton Rouge. However, we could not have been farther from the truth. As we were preparing to start the event, we found that my sister’s bicycle tire was flat and that she could not ride. As a result, she and my dad left to repair her tire. After she departed, the remainder of our group (my mom, Ms. Andrea, Andre, and I) finally set off on our bicycle trail.

The following hours were some of the most strenuous and physically exhausting that I had ever experienced. It seemed as though the cycling trip went on forever, riding up and down the levee in the summer heat with little water. The only thing keeping our group going, apart from my mom, was the promise of a break once we reached our destination. We cycled and cycled, tiring by the minute, but we were still moving forward. Slowly, everyone’s temperament started to change as fatigue and frustration built. The whole group was ready to reach the park and to take a break.

We had a terrible realization once we cycled the distance to the park. Although my mom presented our destination as a place of rest, in reality, it was Farr Park Equestrian Center. In other words, the “park” was a fence. As a result of this conclusion, many emotions rose up inside me, chief among them being anger and disappointment. As soon as I realized the truth, I biked as quickly as I could in the opposite direction to leave that forsaken place, which I dubbed “Far Fence.” Following in my wake was my mom, who was full of mirth because of my sudden outburst. Unfortunately, Far Fence had one last event for us to remember it by, Andre soon fell ill with heat exhaustion. Finally, after the cycling trip of the decade, we were able to leave Far Fence and were able to have as much water and sleep as we wanted.

Dad’s Note:

While my daughter and I made an honest effort to get her bike fixed, it was Sunday and all the shops were closed. We ended up getting ice cream and visiting the LSU tiger instead. 

This is still an issue in my household. 


App-ally Distracted 

In my house, spelling test can be a problem, and in my daughter’s case, you would have thought I asked her to cut off an arm instead of writing her spelling words. Such a drama queen. Lucky for me, I found just the app I was looking for. “My Spelling Test” was an app that allowed me to input her spelling words into my tablet and then it would call them out for her to spell. At the end, it would give the score. You can practice over and over with no pressure and make a game out of studying for spelling. Check out the apps, there may be the right one for you.

Louisiana Online School

It never fails, someone always asks, “How’s homeschooling going?” They really don’t understand that homeschooling and online schooling aren’t the same.

Basically homeschooling involves setting up your own curriculum. This, you can submit to the BESE board for their approval. To comply with state attendance laws, parents who want to educate their children in a home study program must apply and be approved annually by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Parents who enroll their child in a home study program are solely responsible for deciding the curriculum and providing instruction and Louisiana does not provide funding for home study programs.

Students in a home study program are not required to take state assessments. Diplomas awarded through an approved home study program are recognized by all post-secondary educational institutions.

BESE certified online schools already provide a curriculum, both public and private, and meet all state requirements. Online public students are expected to take all required tests provided by BESE.

All necessary materials are mailed to the student (public school) and the student participates in online courses from certified teachers under the watchful eye of their learning coach (typically the parent.) Online students are required to average 6 hours a day or 30 hours a week of school and are in constant contact with their online teachers.

The two most popular public schools are Louisiana Connections Academy and Louisiana Virtual Charter Academy also known as K-12. One of the main private online school participants is The Keystone School.

The public online schools work basically like the voucher program, taking a large portion of their funding from the local school district where the child would have gone. As far as I can tell, these schools are reaching full enrollment.