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Parents more interested in homeschooling after Florida's COVID-19 surge

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Posted at 5:48 PM, Jul 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-07 18:22:05-04

TAMPA, Fla. — The Rzymski family is very experienced when it comes to homeschooling.

“I’m about to do a year of math in like a month,” said 14-year-old Sophia.

They’ve been doing it for years.

“It’s not for everyone, but we’ve had so many great experiences with it,” said their mother Elisa.

Now, they are sharing what they know with dozens of families leaving the public school system that’s dealing with reopening during a pandemic.

RELATED: Fla. education commissioner requires all Florida school districts to reopen campuses in August

“We are going to be hindered too because we are very social. A lot of people don’t realize how social homeschoolers are. There’s going to be things that we also can’t do,” said Rzymski.

Heather Polk oversees a Facebook group called "Tampa Bay Homeschool Families" with thousands of members.

She says homeschooling is very different than the distance learning most students were forced into this spring.

“This is where you are taking on the responsibility and the school teachers in the classroom are no longer grading of doing anything,” said Polk.

Polk says there are many things to consider before making the switch.

“If this is just temporary and you are bringing your kids out of school because you are trying to get through this season, then you always have to be thinking about keeping them on track so that when they go back to school they’ll be on course and keep up with their curriculum and standardized testing and all of that,” said Polk.

Experts say homeschooling is still an option for working parents. Learning can be done in the evening or on weekends.

There are also neighborhood co-ops and hybrid schools.

“In these times it’s probably going to be difficult but I think the parents know whether its the right thing for their child,” said Rzymski.

There are many online resources available, here are two below: