If there is one thing that homeschoolers pretty much all have in common, it’s a willingness to help other families along the journey. Homeschooling moms and dads are well known for their patience with newbies and spirit of generosity when it comes to talking about homeschooling with pretty much anyone who needs help.
As the number of homeschoolers continues to grow, there continues to be no end to the amount of free help and support offered to families coast to coast.
On the other hand, as the number of homeschoolers continues to grow, an increasing number of homeschool consulting services are popping up as well. These businesses are usually comprised of parents who are presently homeschooling, or who have finished homeschooling their own children, and now are offering consulting services for a fee.
Should families pay for homeschooling help? Like anything else homeschooling, families must make that decision for themselves.
Before paying for consulting services, however, consider these important questions:
Are similar services offered elsewhere, either nearby or within easy reach, for free? Have you asked friends, support groups, local contacts, and scoured the Internet to see if the answers may be available free elsewhere?
Does the consultant have the required experience, background, or expertise in the area that you are needing help in? Not everyone can do everything.
Does the company web site have testimonials of satisfied clients or, better yet, can the consultant give you references that you can call?
Have you been offered a free consultation? Will you be asked to pre-pay for a specified number of hours or can you pay-as-you-go? This is important in case you are unhappy with the association and decide to drop out.
Is everything you discuss completely confidential? How do you know?
Is there any conflict of interest you may have overlooked? Are you comfortable using an individual that may also be affiliated with your local school district, for example?
After asking these questions, use intuition combined with good common sense to decide if the purchase of consulting hours is worth your while. Though most homeschoolers get along just fine without paid help along the way, should you decide to go this route, you’ll want to be sure to get the most from your money.