Tools for Planning an Uncertain Future for Homeschool Groups (podcast)

Tools for Planning an Uncertain Future

Carol Topp of HomeschoolCPA.com hosted a webinar titled Planning an Uncertain Future for homeschool group leaders in June 2020. The purpose of the webinar was to help homeschool groups plan their fall activities given the COVID-19 pandemic was making it uncertain of they could operate.

The webinar is available to watch on YouTube at no charge. https://youtu.be/AaQ1c_XuUvY? It runs for one hour 38 minutes! This podcast will air the highlights in smaller chunks over six episodes.

Join this podcast episode on using a decision matrix and the other five episodes as Carol and three panelists discuss:

  • Part 1: Making decisions as a board or team
  • Part 2: Tools a homeschool group can use for planning an uncertain future
  • Part 3: How are the panelists dealing with social distancing rules and wearing masks
  • Part 4: Questions regarding lawsuits, health restrictions, and accommodating new families
  • Part 5: How to communicate the plan to the members
  • Part 6: Using Zoom, offering refunds and other topics.

Download the Decision Matrix spreadsheet at HomeschoolCPA.com/DecisionMatrix

During the podcast Carol mentioned the I am a Homeschool Group Leader Facebook group. Please join us!  https://www.facebook.com/groups/72534255742/

Featured Product

Webinars for Homeschool Leaders

HomeschoolCPA offers several recorded webinars for homeschool leaders. Most are 60-90 minutes and come with handouts and other resources. Prices range from free to $25 each.

Create a Nonprofit for Your Homeschool Community The first steps in starting a nonprofit: a board, bylaws and nonprofit incorporation

501c3 Application for Homeschool Nonprofit How to apply for 501c3 tax exempt status

IRS and State Filings What you need to do after 501c3 status

Tax Preparation for Homeschool Businesses How to prepare your tax return for homeschool business owners

Financial Reports How to present financial reports that are clear and easy to understand to board members  FREE

ABCs of an Academic Homeschool Program How to start an academic, classical homeschool program

Planning an Uncertain Future for Homeschool Groups (podcast)

On June 1, 2020, Carol Topp of HomeschoolCPA.com hosted a webinar titled Planning an Uncertain Future for homeschool group leaders. The purpose of the webinar was to help homeschool groups plan their fall activities given the COVID-19 pandemic was making it uncertain if they could operate.

The webinar is available to watch on YouTube at no charge. https://youtu.be/AaQ1c_XuUvY? It runs for one hour 38 minutes! This podcast will air the highlights in smaller chunks over six episodes.

Join this episode and the next five episodes as Carol and three panelists discuss:

  • Part 1: Making decisions as a board or team
  • Part 2: Tools a homeschool group can use for planning an uncertain future
  • Part 3: How are the panelists dealing with social distancing rules and wearing masks
  • Part 4: Questions regarding lawsuits, health restrictions, and accommodating new families
  • Part 5: How to communicate the plan to the members
  • Part 6: Using Zoom, offering refunds and other topics.

During the podcast Carol mentioned the I am a Homeschool Group Leader Facebook group. Please join us!  https://www.facebook.com/groups/72534255742/

Featured Product

Board Manual

The  Board Manual for homeschool organizations will be very helpful to organize your board and run your homeschool organization successfully!

Author and homeschool advisor, Carol Topp, CPA, has created a Homeschool Organization Board Manual. It is a template to create a board member binder. It has:

  • A list of important documents to keep in your binder
  • Section dividers so you can organize the important papers
  • Tools to help you run your meetings smoothly including
  • A sample agenda that you can use over and over again
  • A calendar of board meetings

But this is more than just a few cover sheets for your binder. It is also a 55-page board training manual with helpful articles on:

  • Suggested Board Meeting Topic List
  • Board Duties
  • Job Descriptions for Board of Directors
  • What Belongs in the Bylaws?
  • Compensation and Benefits for Board Members
  • Best Financial Practices Checklist
  • How to Read and Understand Financial Statements
  • Developing a Child Protection Policy

Click Here to request more information!

What’s the Difference Between Pod Schools and Homeschools?

Have you heard of pod schools? They are groups of parents who gather together to educate their children outside of their public school system. They became very popular as in-person schools closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the fall of 2020.

In the previous episode (#195) of the HomeschoolCPA podcast, host Carol Topp, the Homeschool CPA, discussed with guest Julie Schiffman two distinct differences between pod schools and homeschools

  • Who does the educating, the pod teacher or the parent?
  • Where does the education take place: In the pod space (a home or rented facility) or everywhere?

In today’s episode, Julie explains two more important differences between “pandemic pods” and homeschooling.

  • How is the curriculum chosen and delivered: Set by the school or chosen by the parent and customizable for the child’s needs?
  • Why? What is the motivation to educate this way: a pandemic or something deeper?

Julie Schiffman is owner of TenToad.com a website dedicated to helping parents transition from school to homeschooling though Virtual Homeschool Fairs

During the podcast Carol mentioned Julie’s Learning Pods Checklist and Considerations

Featured Product

Phone Consultation with Carol Topp, CPA

Phone Consultation: A pre-arranged phone call to discuss your questions about starting and running a homeschool organization, co-op or tutorial program. This is my most popular service for homeschool leaders. It’s like having your own homeschool expert CPA on the phone!

Cost: $85/hour to nonprofit organizations.  $100/hour to for-profit businesses.

Contact HomeschoolCPA, Carol Topp, CPA, to arrange a telephone consultation.

Click Here to request more information!

Pandemic Podschooling: Is It Homeschooling?

Have you heard of “pandemic pods”? They are groups of parents who gather together to teach or hire a teacher to educate 3-6 students outside of their public school system. They became very popular as in-person schools closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the fall of 2020.

In this episode of the HomeschoolCPA podcast, host Carol Topp, the Homeschool CPA discusses with guest Julie Schiffman four distinct differences between pod schools and homeschools.

  • Who does the educating, the pod teacher or the parent?
  • Where does the education take place: In the pod space (a home or rented facility) or everywhere?
  • How is the curriculum chosen and delivered: Set by the school or chosen by the parent and customizable for the child’s needs?
  • Why? What is the motivation to educate this way: a pandemic or something deeper?

Julie Schiffman is owner of TenToad.com a website dedicated to helping parents transition from school to homeschooling though Virtual Homeschool Fairs

During the podcast Carol mentioned Julie’s Learning Pods Checklist and Considerations

Featured Product

Homeschool Co-ops:
How to Start Them, Run Them and not Burn Out

Have you ever thought about starting a homeschool co-op? Are you afraid it will be too much work? Do you think you’ll have to do it all by yourself? Starting a homeschool co-op can be easy! This book Homeschool Co-ops: How to Start Them, Run Them and Not Burn Out will give you ideas, inspiration, tips, wisdom and the tools you need to start a homeschool co-op, run it and not burn out!

Click Here to request more information!

Do you have a passion to help homeschool leaders?

 

Do you have a passion to help homeschool leaders?

Does a consulting business helping homeschool leaders sound appealing to you?

I have enjoyed being “the HomeschoolCPA” and advising homeschool leaders for 20 years and I’m ready to start slowly handing over my consulting business to another person(s) via a mentoring program.

Potential mentees should have:

  • an interest in homeschooling,
  • education in accounting (CPA preferred) and
  • experience in nonprofit leadership

Homeschooling is a growing niche that could serve as a great sideline business or a perfect opportunity for a parent who want to homeschool and keep using his or her accounting education and experience.

If this sounds appealing to you, visit HomeschoolCPA.com/Mentoring for details.

Carol Topp, CPA
HomeschoolCPA.com
Helping Homeschool Leaders

Are your kids budding entrepreneurs?

 

Click for more details

If you have a budding entrepreneur in your house than have them join the Micro Business for Teens online Club!

Join other teenagers launching a micro business in a monthly coaching and mentoring session with Carol Topp, author of Micro Business for Teens. It’s all online, so you can participate from anywhere!

Micro Bushiness for Teens Club starts September 11, 2018

The sessions will be held once a month live on Tuesday afternoons at 3:00-4:00 pm ET

Registration open now! $100 per student or $150 for a full family for two semesters.

Click for more details

Coaching and mentoring like this with Carol Topp, CPA would typically cost $815! So $100 for 8 hours of Carol’s time and experience is a bargain!

Enroll now

Motivation to homeschool is changing. How does your group adapt?

Homeschool is changing! I know that you as a homeschool leader see those changes.

In her 2012 book Home Is Where the School Is, sociologist Jennifer Lois broadly divided homeschoolers into two groups: first-choice and second-choice homeschoolers.

A 2017 Pioneer Institute whitepaper characterized the groups this way: “The ‘first-choice’ family is in essence the traditional homeschooling family, viewing homeschooling as a lifestyle and an integral part of a student’s growth.

‘Second-choice’ homeschooling parents might be described as ‘pragmatic homeschoolers,’ perhaps even ‘reluctant homeschoolers.’ . . . this sub-set tends to view homeschooling as a stop-gap solution to a school-based problem as opposed to an overall family lifestyle.”

As more people start homeschooling for different motivations other than as a lifestyle, raising life-long learners, or faith, how does your group adapt?

Are you accommodating the parents who are just looking for a stop-gap solution?

Here is what some groups are trying:

  • Allowing more drop off students  and less parental involvement
  • Hiring more paid teachers
  • Offering more parent education on how to homeschool
  • Opening their formerly exclusive groups to allow public-school-at-home families to join

Share your ideas in the comments or join the I Am a Homeschool Group Leader group on Facebook and leave a comment.

 

Carol Topp, CPA

Helping Homeschool Leaders

An affordable, online homeschool conference you can watch at any time

 

I’ve attended a lot of homeschool conferences, and I love that, but you may not be able to attend a live conference.

So… I’m excited to be a part of the

2018 Homeschool Moms Conference (online)

Watch over 100 workshops from 60 dynamic speakers and veteran homeschoolers from the comfort of your home.

There are two tracks: one on general homeschooling and one on working from home with an emphasis on blogging.

I will be giving 3 sessions on the Work at Home/Blogging Track

  • Micro Business for Moms
  • Business Tips and Taxes for Bloggers
  • Blogging: Is It a Hobby, Business or Ministry?
Early bird registration ends on Monday morning June 4, 2018 at 7:59am EST.
Early bird pricing saves you $5 and for one track is $15, All-Access Pass (both tracks) is $25.
This is quite affordable. It’s less than $.50 per session for lifetime access.

The conference begins June 4, 2018 and closes June 10, 2018.

All attendees will receive lifetime access to all conference session videos. So register today and watch the sessions at any time!

I also learned that you’ll be able to interact with the presenters in an online chat box.

Carol Topp, CPA
HomechoolCPA.com
Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through the link.

We’re bringing a homeschool conference to YOU!

 

One of the best thing you can do for you homeschool is attend a homeschool conference.
The encouragement, practical helps, and advice you receive are key to your success!

 

I’ve met many of you face-to-face at homeschool conferences, and I love that, but…
I can’t attend every conference and you may not be able to attend a live conference.
so…

 

We’re bringing a homeschool conference to YOU!

 

2018 Homeschool Moms Conference

Access over 100 workshops from 60 dynamic speakers and veteran homeschoolers from the comfort of your home.

There are two tracks: one on general homeschooling and one on working from home with an emphasis on blogging.

I will be giving 3 sessions on the Work at Home/Blogging Track

  • Micro Business for Moms
  • Business Tips and Taxes for Bloggers
  • Blogging: Is It a Hobby, Business or Ministry?
Early bird registration kicks off Monday 5/28/18 (TODAY) and ends on 6/4/18 at 7:59am EST.
Early bird pricing: 1 track $15, All-Access Pass (both tracks) $25.

 

The conference begins June 4, 2018 and closes June 10, 2018.

All attendees will receive lifetime access to all conference session videos. So register today and watch the sessions at any time!

Carol Topp, CPA
HomechoolCPA.com
Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through the link.

My homeschool is a private school. Can I use 529 funds?

I explained in “Can homeschoolers use 529 plans? Maybe!” that you can use 529 savings account funds for tuition paid to a public, private, or religious school.

Some homeschool students take classes from private schools (locally or online). The tuition payments to these schools can use 529 funds without  penalty or taxes.

So that begs the question,

“In my state, my homeschool is considered a private school. So can I use 529 funds for my private school/homeschool expenses?”

No. Sorry!

Here’s why:

The expenses must be to pay tuition. You don’t pay yourself tuition! That would be silly and not tax-smart.

Your other homeschool expenses such as books, curriculum, school supplies, field trips and are not paymnets for tuition and so you cannot use 529 funds without paying a hefty penalty!

Tuition payments to organizations that are not schools like your local co-op, Classical Conversations, etc.  cannot use 529 funds either (without incurring taxes and a 10% penalty!)

Carol Topp, CPA