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Local homeschool co-op proves to be a success

Gloucester homeschooler Tracey Esplin knew that homeschool co-ops had been successful in other areas, and wanted to try the concept locally. The co-ops bring small groups of homeschooled children together in a classroom setting for instruction led by qualified teachers. Esplin opened her co-op this fall, and has been impressed with the response and its success.

Esplin said the co-ops are popular because they give homeschooled children an opportunity to interact with others in a classroom setting, and they can offer instruction in areas that some homeschool parents may not have the background to teach.

After spending much of last year gauging interest among other homeschoolers, surveying what topics parents were interested in, locating a site and vetting teachers, Esplin starting accepting applications. She charged $5 per class, just enough to cover expenses.

When classes began in September, Esplin had eight teachers offering 16 courses for children at pre-kindergarten through h...

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