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Gap Year before high school

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Replies to: Gap Year before high school

  • mom2andmom2and 2751 replies17 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,768 Senior Member
    edited May 22
    The other issue is that homeschooling for a year is still school. That would not meet the goal of having the student graduate early, unless it was allowed to be counted as repeating a grade.

    Hoping the OP will come back and let us know his/her thoughts.
    edited May 22
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  • CorralenoCorraleno 140 replies1 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 141 Junior Member
    edited May 22
    I think the three posts by the OP makes it reasonable to assume the issue is about redshirting, not about academics or a “gap” year. Educators don’t support redshirting middle school students for good reason.
    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.wcpo.com/news/insider/sports-first-school-second-why-local-parents-are-holding-their-kids-back-in-6th-7th-8th-grade?_amp=true

    That article is about parents holding back kids so they will be a year *older* than other kids in the same grade. The OP's son started K early, so he would be getting a year to catch up with the other kids in his grade, instead of being the youngest as he is now. That article also says that "if a parent thinks that another year of maturity, social adjustment and personal growth will help their child adjust to the world around them, go for it." Lots of parents who start their kids in school a year early later decide that wasn't the best choice and want to "undo" it. That's very different from holding a child back just so he'll be bigger and stronger and older than everyone else in the same grade.
    edited May 22
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  • turtletimeturtletime 1233 replies12 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,245 Senior Member
    @csfmap I get what you are saying but it’s not the best article... not that I have a better one. Retention is not as overall successful as society likes to believe and acceleration is a great deal more successful than social commentary suggests. This particular situation is a little wonky in that it seems to be largely about improving sports opportunities and helping a hid transition during a move. Not the route I’d take but I’m not sure we can look at it as a typical retention.
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  • MusakParentMusakParent 946 replies9 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 955 Member
    The thing is a year of free learning for a gifted kid CAN be acceleration. If he does a standardized test toward end of that year, he may be in a good position to place into higher class levels in high school. High schoolers in most academic situations are on a variety of paths. Maybe dual enrollment can be a good fit later on. In no way do I think this is a choice to hold this kid back academically which I think is the default view by those who've used very lockstep academic choices for their kids.

    Unorthodox educational choices have worked very well for my mostly homeschooled GT kids. My oldest first hit algebra 1 in 5th grade. He is launching to college at age 18 in the fall after dual enrolling for 2 years. I tend to trust gut instincts that parents have about right path for their kids in this regard. We live quite near a large university and I know a number of families that took their kids for a year on a professor's sabbatical and their kids all have done great. Smart families, smart successful kids. I don't get the feeling the OP was going to lock her kid in the basement with video games.
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  • csfmapcsfmap 445 replies14 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 459 Member
    I agree it’s not the best article. I linked it to explain my use of the term redshirting outside the context of college athletes. The article also points out some of the problems with holding a student back.

    The OP only posted three times, (OP, #8, #11) so there is a lot of conjecture, and I could certainly be wrong, but this is why I believe it is about redshirting.

    From what the OP said we know she has a 13 year old 8th grader and they are moving to California in summer or fall (OP). She said he is very smart and doing well academically, including exceptionally well in math where he’s performing at the high school level. He’s in a sport where he is competing at a level higher than high-school varsity and he is physically small (#8). She made no mention of immaturity, difficulty making friends, any social-emotional issues or personal growth needs. She made no mention of an academic plan other than maybe going to another country to learn a language. The other plan was enrolling him in a sports academy day program.

    She gives too main reasons for wanting him to take a year off. She doesn’t want to transfer him mid-year and she wants to increase his chances of playing D1 in college (#8).

    Here is where conjecture starts. I don’t think transferring mid-year is her primary concern because they might move in the summer, she would be comfortable sending him to another country and she would be willing to transfer him mid-year to attend eighth grade. In post #11 she says what she really wants is for him to repeat 8th grade, but he can’t because California won’t allow it. Since he can’t repeat 8th grade, her alternative is to have him take a year off before 9th grade. That leaves sports as the driving factor and that fits the term redshirting in middle school. Redshirting isn't just about older, bigger, and stronger, it’s also about an additional year to improve skills and performance in the sport.

    An aside, it would cost California tax payers ~$11,500 to pay for a student to repeat a grade.
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  • CardinalBobcatCardinalBobcat 149 replies1 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 150 Junior Member
  • SJ2727SJ2727 1704 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,710 Senior Member
    @csfmap "She made no mention of immaturity, difficulty making friends, any social-emotional issues or personal growth needs."

    That's correct, she didn't, and that concerns me. It could be that she didn't mention them because they are not problems, or it could be that the parents are so focused on academic/sport achievement that they either don't care about or don't notice those issues. Sadly we have all seen those kids at our kids' schools, and we see some on CC too. There is so much more to being a healthy, well rounded, happy teenager than high grades and sports trophies.
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  • SJ2727SJ2727 1704 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,710 Senior Member
    @katliamom , wow, that sounds like a phenomenal gap year at any age!
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 8548 replies314 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 8,862 Senior Member
    @katliamom, If your husband was in Europe then US education laws didn't apply to him. OP will be in CA. Even if they travel the US, the family is responsible for meeting whatever CA education laws require. It won't be a gap year. They can have him repeat 8th grade but assign whatever level work they want and register him as a 9th grader in the public school the following year.

    I'd be interested in hearing what their son wants.
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  • roycroftmomroycroftmom 2697 replies36 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,733 Senior Member
    Well, the kids I knew who took gap years in middle school to travel did not devote much time at all to academics and rejoined their classmates with no problem. Whatever they missed, they caught up on quickly or it wasn't important to begin with. Education officials are easily satisfied with a broad homeschool plan.
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  • lovemidwestlovemidwest 3 replies1 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 4 New Member
    edited June 6
    Thank You all for many great comments. I am the OP. Things have not much changed except the fact the chance of moving in the late summer is higher (than moving mid-school year).

    After reading the comments above, I am considering homeschooling him. It won't be so hard as he can do math using AoPS (he has done a few courses already) for a couple of hours or more a day. He can read books related to social studies subjects. My husband or I can teach him or at least guide on science.
    Many of you mentioned about traveling. As CA is a totally new state for us, we will just travel nearby for a weekend trip or maybe a day trip. He is to travel many nearby areas anyway with his club for games and tournaments. I don't think going abroad is the best way at this point (financially we won't be able to afford due to the high cost of living in CA).

    Of course, to fit the purpose, I will designate this as an 8th grade curriculum so that he can start 9th grade next year in the fall.

    Here is my question. I have, of course, never did homeschooling and does not know the necessary paperworks to make that happen (if there are). I will research this in the internet. If any of you have resources on how to enlist myself as a homeschooling teacher (for their own child), that will be great.
    edited June 6
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 8548 replies314 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 8,862 Senior Member
    Homeschooling regs are state specific. Look for an online CA homeschool group for support. Read the CA homeschool regulations yourself and make sure you understand them.
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  • happymomof1happymomof1 29380 replies170 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 29,550 Senior Member
    There also is a homeschooling forum here. Go to the main page where all of the forums are listed, and scroll down to find it.
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  • tutumom2001tutumom2001 1199 replies2 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,201 Senior Member
    edited June 6
    @lovemidwest I don't homeschool, but it is very common where I live and I know many people who do. As mentioned above, the rules are state specific. In my state, you have to file a notice that you will homeschool, and you have a deadline. In the paperwork, you will cover your curriculum and how you will test. Standardized testing is required for homeschoolers here, and they are held to the same standards.

    Just a suggestion, but since you're new in town and don't have experience with home school, I would put him in a co-op. It will help him socially interact with some peers and help you with the curriculum.

    Question: Does the sports academy not have an academic program? All of the "full time" dance programs we looked at for my daughter had some sort of homeschool program. Could you put him in the 8th grade in a program with the sports academy?
    edited June 6
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