FAQ

Q. What am i signing up for?

A. 

This is a research project exploring how homeschool parents communicate and work together.  No research or information on children and students is being gathered. You will be given a Consent Form. It will give you information about the study so you can make an informed decision about participation in this research.

 

This consent form will give you the information you will need to understand why this study is being done and why you are being invited to participate.  It will also describe what you will need to do to participate and any known risks, inconveniences or discomforts that you may have while participating. We encourage you to take some time to think this over and ask questions now and at any other time. If you decide to participate, you will be asked to sign this form and you will be given a copy for your records.

 

Q. who is eligible to participate?

A. Parents, guardians, or other primary caregivers of children ages 4 to 14 (K-8) who currently homeschool.

Q. What is the purpose of this study?

A. The purpose of this research study is to gather information about how homeschool families work together.

Families who homeschool often support each other, and form networks to share information and resources.  Information about these networking practices could serve to support the development of a model for new or improved types of home-school communication networks in traditional public schools.

The stories and ideas shared by parents will be used to form some models of school-to-family and family-to-family communication and support networks that may be implemented in public schools

 

Q. Where will the study take place and how long will is last?

A. The researcher is conducting this study in Connecticut during the Summer and Fall of 2018.  Focus groups will be held in an agreed upon public location such as a coffee shop, library, or a child-friendly venue for parents of young children.  The focus group conversation should last about 40 minutes.

 

Q. what will i be asked to do?

A. If you agree to take part in this study, you will be asked to:

·   Communicate with the researcher to set up convenient times to meet for a focus group with several other participating parents.  (Individual telephone or skype/facetime interviews may also be an option.) 

·   Meet with the researcher and several other parents at a local library, coffee shop, or other public space for about forty minutes of recorded conversation.  Though not part of the study in any way, children are welcome, and a child-friendly location may be agreed upon.

·   Sign this release form that states agreement to participate.  This agreement details how the information will be used, and how personal information will be kept anonymous and private.

Q. what are my benefits, risks, and personal privacy assurances of being in this study?

A. You may not directly benefit from this research; however, we hope that your participation in the study may provide the satisfaction of a positive opportunity for you and other participants to share ideas that may improve public schools, the experiences of parents, and the success of students.

We believe there are no known risks associated with this research study; however, a possible inconvenience may be the time it takes to complete the study.

The following procedures will be used to protect the confidentiality of your study records, which will mainly consist of digital recordings of focus group conversation, transcripts of the focus groups, and the researcher’s notes.  The researcher will keep all study records, including any codes to your data, in a secure location such as a locked file cabinet or password protected digital storage.  Research records will be labeled with a code. A master key that links names and codes will be maintained in a separate and secure location. The master key and audiotapes will be destroyed no more than 3 years after the close of the study. All electronic files  containing identifiable information will be password protected. Any computer hosting such files will also have password protection to prevent access by unauthorized users. Only the researcher will have access to the passwords. At the conclusion of this study, the researchers may publish their findings. Information will be presented in summary format and you will not be identified in any publications or presentations.

Please be advised that although the researchers will take every precaution to maintain confidentiality of the data, the nature of focus groups prevents the researchers from guaranteeing absolute confidentiality. The researchers would like to remind participants to respect the privacy of fellow participants and not repeat what is said in the focus group to others.

 

Q. WILL I RECEIVE ANY PAYMENT FOR TAKING PART IN THE STUDY?

A. No monetary compensation is available. In return for participation, the researcher is offering an optional half hour tutoring session following the focus group.  The researcher is a licensed and  experienced AP English teacher with specialties in Shakespeare, Poetry, and Persuasive Writing.  The researcher is also a former engineering student, and parents may select a math or science oriented activity instead.  No data or observations of children are to be part of the study; the tutoring session is offered as an optional thank-you for parents’ time and participation.

 

Q. WHAT IF I HAVE QUESTIONS?

Take as long as you like before you make a decision. I will be happy to answer any question you have about this study. If you have further questions about this project or if you have a research-related problem, you may contact the researcher Joseph Jeffery, (203) 931-5865 or at JefferyJ2@SouthernCT.edu