Affording home education is not as burdensome as many suppose. Thankfully more resources are available all the time and we strive to help put them within reach for our homeschool community.
Education Tax Credit Scholarship
New Hampshire’s Education Tax Credit (ETC) program was created by the legislature in 2012 and launched in January 2013. Businesses and individuals may make donations through the ETC program and receive credits against their Business Profits Tax, Business Enterprise Tax, or Interest and Dividends Tax. These donations are then given as scholarships to low-income children, those most at-risk for life-long academic challenges, for tuition at an alternative education provider or for home education purposes. NH is the only ETC program in the country that extends to homeschoolers!
Per statute, eligibility is based on two criteria: 1) the family’s annual income must not exceed 300% of the federal poverty limit, and 2) the child must be “switching” from his or her local public school to an out-of-district public school, a private school, or a home education program, or as of 2018, be a new Kindergartner or 1st grade student entering one of these alternative educational environments.
To date New Hampshire’s program has been utilized by 877 children. For the 2018-2019 school year, there are 413 scholarship recipients; 62% are at or below the federal Free and Reduced Lunch poverty line, which is $46,400 for a family of four (2019); and 16% of scholarship students have special needs.
There are two approved scholarship organizations in New Hampshire; the Children’s Scholarship Fund NH and the Giving and Going Alliance.
Applications for the following school year typically open in January; families are urged to apply early and complete the required documents in a timely manner.
There are a number of ways to find discounted and free homeschool resources, including but not limited to the following:
Local library materials, programs, and tickets
NH's local libraries routinely have discounted tickets to area museums, learning centers, and other educational events. They also have extensive materials that can be borrowed not only from your local library, but also those around the state. Many also host learning events throughout the year that can be a wonderful addition to a home education program.
The internet is decentralizing learning more and more every year and is an amazing source for any subject you may seek. Two examples are Khan Academy and MIT OpenCourseware.
Homeschoolers can often tap into educator discounts! Many retailers require proof of homeschooling; your home ed acknowledgement letter is usually sufficient. We list many discount programs on our website.
Opportunities shared on our Facebook page & group
Co-ops and family-led classes
Many families work together to teach their children in co-ops; we list several on our Support Groups page. Families also share opportunities for field trips, book clubs, or other occasional learning opportunities and many are published on our Facebook group -- another great reason to connect!
Used curriculum sources
There are a several used curriculum sources available. The Seacoast Christian Home Educators Association of NH and ME (SCHEA) host a very large sale every June in Rochester - it's the biggest in NH! Other groups occasionally host events and again, we do our best to share them on our Facebook page and group. MassHOPE, a Massachusetts-based Christian non-profit, hosts an annual sale, too.
We also have a Facebook group, GSHE Marketplace, to help bring together sellers and buyers of homeschool materials.