While public schools have guidelines in place for returning students come September, many parents are researching the option of homeschooling their children.
"We're expecting in many parts of the world that the number of parents involved in [homeschooling] will be four or five times more than what it normally is," says Gerald Huebner.
Huebner is the Chairman of the Homeschool Legal Defence Association of Canada and he is also on the board of Manitoba Association of Christian Homeschools.
"We homeschooled our two children all the way through their school years," says Huebner. This continued on to the next generation as he says, "My daughter is homeschooling her four children."
The range of expenses for homeschooling a child varies widely.
"The cost really depends on what parents are interested in. It can be very inexpensive because you can use so many things that are free or exchanged with other people. In most cases, it's a couple of hundred dollars per student, but you could spend thousands if you want to."
Home education is a legal and viable option for many families for different reasons.
"What we find is that many families use a system of learning where they'll teach the materials to all the kids at the same time. That doesn't work for learning to read or teaching math, but much of the sciences, history, geography can be done at the same time."
There are three requirements that must be met when people homeschool. Parents must register with the government, provide an outline, and give two progress reports throughout the year.
"It's not governed by how much money you have or how much education you have. The success of home education is really driven by the love, the care, and what you pour into the children."
Homeschooling offers more flexibility for families, as Huebner reminds parents concerned with many subjects to teach.
"Don't try to run a school in your home. Some of the tools, some of the curriculum and methods that were used with us don't necessarily fit and shouldn't be bound by them."
When asked if parents have to be experts in all subjects, Huebner says, "That's the beauty of home education. People can pick what's best for the child and what's best for their family."
"There are so many resources we can call on. It's really bound by the parents committing to learning alongside their children."
Huebner has travelled to sixteen countries and spoken about homeschool to many different audiences.
He says, "The number one question is always, 'what about socialization?' The research is very clear. If you want your children to be peer dependant, then homeschooling is probably not for you. The family setting and parents being involved in various kinds of activities provides excellent socialization."
Steps to take when homeschooling for the first time
"The first step is really just to make that decision. Have clear in your mind why you're doing this."
Some days are harder than others, according to Huebner, and it's then people need a reminder of the purpose in it.
"Get some support, get connected to a group of people. You need that support."
Some families join a homeschool co-op or even have one other family they connect with regularly.
Lastly, Huebner says, "Do some reading. Find out what this is all about and what's behind it. If you go to the Manitoba Association of Christian Homeschools website, you'll find a lot of resources."
These are three steps for parents considering homeschooling their child or children this fall.
If parents are looking for in-depth answers to their questions, Huebner says, "We're in the process of gearing up for an information series of webinars in August, starting August 17. There is non-biased, academic research that shows that home education works. It's not easy but it's worth it."
There is a host of information on the Manitoba government website with a list of Frequently Asked Questions.
"Homeschooling is using every opportunity that you have in life, in living, in the friends and family that you have, and the things that you're doing to be able to teach. It's not bound or determined by a curriculum, it's really by life."