Friday, May 15, 2009

Friday's Answer: Starting a Homeschool Co-op

Is there a step-by-step check off list for starting a coop?

It can be difficult to know how to move forward from the idea of starting a co-op to actually getting one up and running successfully. Many homeschool groups forge ahead, take the risk and learn from their own experiences--whether good or bad.

Some groups start small with only a class or two at first to test the waters and gain success by methodically learning and repeating what works the next time around. Others are blessed to have communication with other groups that have been successful and gain valuable insight from their experience and repeat that.

We can suggest some helpful tools that can get you off to a great start to your successful homeschool co-op. There is a great book by our friend in Ohio, Carol Topp, called
Homeschool Co-ops: How to Start Them, Run Them and Not Burn Out. Her wisdom will be a great help to anyone involved in leading a co-op.

A proven method to start a co-op within your local church is with the full support system and ideas of First Class Ministries. Heidi St. John has a heart to support homeschoolers and group leaders with an exciting arsenal of materials to make your co-op successful from the get-go.

Let's chat and share experiences and insight for starting a homeschool co-op on our Facebook page! We can learn so much from each other!

What would your best tip be for this homeschool group leader who wants to start a co-op? Write a quick response here as a comment (see below) or simply answer on our discussion page.

Have a wonderful day!
Denise & Kristen


Stacy and David said...

Our support group was actually founded by a Co-op that has been meeting for 20 years! This year we bought 4 copies of Carol Topp's book. WOW we sure wish we had that book years ago! The book is fantastic to get you thinking creatively about the many things involved and was so encouraging for our team to read. EVERYTHING you need to know is in that book!

Carol Topp, CPA said...

Stacy and David,
I'm so pleased that you found the book helpful! I think it is useful for every leader and board member to have a copy of my book, especially the chapters on dealing with conflict and avoiding burnout.
Carol Topp

Anonymous said...

Start with a group of friends that you feel compfortable with. It's a good idea to Google other homeschool groups and see if they have useful information on their websites that you can do a quick study of! Here's a useful constitution from a well organized group:
One of the most important tips for me is to remember, there will always be a complainer no matter how well you do your "job!" Let it roll off your back or you'll end up quitting the good because of the one or two bad.