Homeschooling in Newfoundland & Labrador….
Homeschooling in Newfoundland & Labrador is a relatively new concept compared to many other provinces in Canada. A grassroots movement began in the early 90’s in Central Newfoundland and later, 1999, an organization called the Newfoundland and Labrador Home Educators Association was set up in St. John’s with the help of Dallas Miller from HSLDA (Home School Legal Defense Association). A couple of smaller provincial conferences were held in the late 90’s with Dallas attending in June 2000. The concept of homeschooling was still in its infancy and growth was stagnating. As a matter of fact, most people were of the impression that homeschooling was illegal in Newfoundland so the association was struggling to become established.
During the National Leadership Convention in Ottawa in 2001, delegates from Newfoundland were in conversation with Dallas Miller who continued to offer assistance in developing the home school movement in Newfoundland. Following up on these initial conversations, HSLDA sent two couples from the Manitoba Association of Christian Home Schoolers to our province in July 2003 to aid in establishing once again a provincial association. Gerald and Bev Huebner and Warren and Marion Hart arrived in central Newfoundland as guest speakers at our first annual “Conference on the Rock” which had an attendance of about 50 people, including children. It was at this conference that CHENL (Christian Home Educators of Newfoundland and Labrador)was formed. Initially, six couples formed the board of this association, which proved effective in having a well -rounded discussion group. The home schooling movement was in its early growth stages but having an official association organized with HSLDA’s support was a huge step in promoting and facilitating home schooling in our province. OCHEC (Ontario Christian Home Educators’Connection) also made a donation to help get the association on a strong financial footing.
Many thanks to Cathy Robinson for this article.