Family Times: Home-school Resources & Reviews for Christians

"Home Schooling: Start Here"

Published by Home School Legal Defense Association
Reviewed by David Pratte

"Home Schooling: Start Here" is a brochure (8 x 11) published by HSLDA and designed to introduce the concept of home schooling. It would be especially useful as a foundation resource for families that are just beginning to consider home schooling. I believe it would also serve as an excellent introduction to give to family members or friends who may be doubtful about the value and validity of home schooling. The brochure is full-color, containing many pictures and professionally produced and printed.

The brochure answers the basic questions people have about home schooling. It starts with a brief history of the modern home-school movement, including facts to document evidence of past success. It answers the "big questions" about the legality of home schooling and how to obtain curricula and materials, socialization, and college entrance. It then lists some "useful tips" about support groups, selecting a curriculum, field trips, dealing with skeptical relatives and friends, and handling difficult topics like foreign languages and advanced math. The text is sprinkled liberally with quotations, statistics, and family profiles to document the claims and successes of home schooling.

As you would expect, since it is produced by HSLDA, the brochure makes several references to HSLDA and concludes with a pitch for joining HSLDA. Some may consider this a disadvantage, but frankly I consider it an advantage. There is, in my opinion, no organization that has more experience and can speak with more authority about the home-school movement than HSLDA. They have been on the frontlines of the legal conflicts almost since the beginning of the current movement. And their attempts to defend home schooling in courts and legislative bodies have required them to accumulate thorough documentation about home schooling successes. Their descriptions of HSLDA are factual and objective with no "hype." I encourage home schoolers to join HSLDA, so I appreciate the information the brochure gives about it.

Some sheets include some advertisements by home-school publishers and an HSLDA membership application. However, these are deliberately designed to be torn off, if you wish to give the brochure to someone without these ads.

We received a free complimentary copy of the brochure from HSLDA. I assume they offer it free to others as well, so the price is right. I encourage all of you to obtain a copy. Contact HSLDA, PO Box 3000, Purcellville, VA 20134; phone 540-338-5600. Or visit their web site at

Visit HSLDA's WWW site.


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