Volume 95, Issue 56

Friday, January 11, 2002
 
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NEWS

Operation Massive II?

LTC gets new buses, but long waits continue

Home-schoolers fight to get into university

Prof: Canada ill-prepared for threat

Lung cancer photo album

News Briefs

Home-schoolers fight to get into university

By Jessica Leeder
Gazette Staff


Mom or dad controlling recess time is not the only hardship some home-schoolers must tackle. Many also face an uphill battle when seeking access to post-secondary education.

Rebecca Kingswood, a first-year Huron University College arts student and one of two home-school graduates currently enrolled at Western, experienced many difficulties applying to university last year, said her mother and teacher Joan Kingswood.

"When we went to the Registrar's office on main campus, the admissions people told us it was impossible for [Rebecca] to get in without having her OACs,"Joan said.

She had home-schooled Rebecca, who turned 18 in December, for her entire pre-university academic career. Since her daughter had never been to a traditional school, Joan believed the significance of her scholastic accomplishments were unique.

According to Lori Gribbon, manager of admissions and recruitment at Western, there are no existing guidelines to assist Ontario universities in evaluating home-schooled students who apply for admissions.

"The problem is that only a handful of home-schooled students apply here each year," Gribbon said. "We need to develop a policy to help us analyze information and evaluate these students. We have no evidence to show us how they perform or what they can do relative to their other peers in Ontario."

Currently in Ontario, the only option universities have to evaluate home-schooled students is to have them write an exam called the General Equivalency Diploma, said Ontario Federation of Teaching Parents' spokeswoman Gail Remish.

Rebecca opted not to take the GED when she took her portfolio to Huron College and learned she would be considered for admission. After interviews with Huron's principal and completing a series of tests and exams, she was granted admission, Joan explained.

To help make applying easier for students like Rebecca, the Ontario Association of University Registrars will meet with the parents of home-schooled students at a conference in February to develop a policy of evaluation for home-schooled students, Gribbon explained.

According to a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities, the Ontario government will keep its distance from the issue.

"The government currently has no plans to impose common standards to educate home-schooled students," said Tanya Cholakov.

However, the government did agree, last May, to grant funding to home-schooled students attending university at the same level with which public school applicants are funded, Cholakov said.




To Contact The News Department:
gazette.news@uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 2002