Laura built a nice comparison chart to summarize the most popular homeschool options offered through charter schools in Utah. For more detailed information on each program, check out our Distance Learning Series.
This is just Laura’s opinion, but hopefully it serves as a useful reference to guide you in the right direction.
Utah Distance Learning Programs Comparison Chart
|My Tech High||Canyon Grove||AISU@HOME||Lumen||Harmony|
|Recommendation||Best for students who prefer independence, interest-based learning, and third-party courses.||Best for students living near Pleasant Grove who enjoy on-campus options and minimal requirements.||Best for students living near Murray who are self-motivated and interested in extra-curricular activities.||Best for students seeking face-to-face interaction, and third-party courses.||Best for families seeking a wide range of options and living near a Harmony Learning Center.|
|Cost||free (tax dollars)||free (tax dollars)||free (tax dollars)||free (tax dollars)||free (tax dollars)|
|State Testing with Opt-Out Option||yes||yes||yes||yes||yes|
|Teacher or Coach Provided||yes||yes||yes||yes||yes|
Additional information behind the rankings
Each program has it’s own requirements for participation and weekly reporting. For Laura, flexibility and simplicity are key.
- My Tech High: Students demonstrate progress in each course by submitting weekly learning logs.
- Canyon Grove: Students demonstrate progress in math and language arts by submitting weekly samples and quizzes.
- AISU@HOME: Students submit portfolios each trimester to show progress, and then demonstrate mastery of core requirements before the end of the year.
- Lumen: Students demonstrate competency of all school standards for their grade level by submitting weekly work samples (Return and Report).
- Harmony: Student progress is tracked with attendance, except for flex courses. Flex courses require weekly or biweekly worksheets that demonstrate subject mastery.
Each program offers courses directly as well as options for outside courses. For Laura, quality and flexibility are key.
- My Tech High: Many online choices are available with student’s choice of at-home and third-party options easily reimbursed. More flexibility in core subjects since students have access to Utah Core material through Homeroom.
- Canyon Grove: Their Resource Library enables families to build their own curriculums and borrow everything they need.
- AISU@HOME: A selection of online and on-campus courses are available as well as student’s choice of at-home curriculum.
- Lumen: Wide variety of choices from online classrooms, custom home-led curriculums, and third-party classes.
- Harmony: Many online and at-home course options as well as face-to-face opportunities.
Purchases of Curriculum, Supplies, and Tuition
Each program has it’s own approach to alleviating homeschool expenses. For Laura, quantity and flexibility are key.
- My Tech High: $1900 reimbursement is available for grades 1-12 (roughly half for k). Receive a $400 technology allowance ($300 the first year) plus $150 for custom-built courses or $300 for third-party courses (math, language arts, science or social studies, technology, plus one elective).
- Canyon Grove: Resource Library aims to let families borrow everything they want. No third-party course tuition available.
- AISU@HOME: Learning Library aims to let families borrow everything they want. No third-party course tuition available.
- Lumen: Funds for custom education spending varies depending on grade level: $700 (K), $1500 (1-8), $2500 (9-12). Lumen pays expenses directly on your behalf. No reimbursements necessary. Third-party course tuition is available.
- Harmony: Up to $150 per Flex course per year. Up to $500 per year of additional funds for technology and other supplies. Up to $1000 for custom-built Learning Adventure Kits.
Each program has it’s own options for face-to-face activities. For Laura, quantity and quality are key.
- My Tech High: Maker Spaces. Occasional field trips and class activities are available. Third-party group classes are easily available.
- Canyon Grove: Up to 1.5 days per week of on-campus classes (Epic Day and Specials Day), field trips, assemblies, and Discovery Space Center. Main campus in Pleasant Grove and extension campuses in Sandy and Draper.
- AISU@HOME: Many options for classes, clubs, activities, field trips, and speaker events.
- Lumen: Family Learning Center, learning labs, family activities and field trips. Third-party classes are easily available.
- Harmony: Options Day for electives, Multi-Age Program for core classes and electives, or third-party provider classes. Campuses are located in Midvale, Lehi, Springville, and Roy.
So how about you? What is your favorite homeschool program? Should we add a program to our comparison table? Do you agree with Laura’s rankings? Discuss below.