Pine Belt mom expands curriculum beyond typical homeschool studies
SUMRALL, Miss. (WDAM) - Back to school is in full swing across the Pine Belt, even for those who have been learning from home long before the pandemic.
“As a homeschool parent, it’s hard to juggle a regular job, and I wanted to do something with all three of my degrees,” said Kristin James.
With a Bachelor’s degree in Forensics, a Bachelor’s in Paralegal Studies and a Master’s in Criminal Justice, James decided to put her credentials to use in the Pine Belt homeschool community.
James teaches students as young as 11 years old the basics of the law, starting with the supreme court justices up to the amendments and more. Her goal is to show there’s more to law enforcement than police officers.
“You know you have parole officers, and you have those who work with juveniles in the juvenile justice system,” James said. “You have court reporters, things like that are also in the criminal justice system and the judicial system.
“Your students or children get the same education as they would in a public school setting, but having this (curriculum) as an alternative (allows you) to find out what they like and what they don’t like as potential careers in the future.”
James’ passion for law enforcement grew over the years, but she said she never thought she would use it this way. It wasn’t until she decided to homeschool her own child that she realized a regular job wouldn’t allow her to both work and teach. So this curriculum became a way to keep doing what she loved.
“After some consideration, I figured I’ll just do it myself, you know,” she said. “I have the education. I’m able to build curriculums. I write well. So I wanted to do something that my son would be interested in so we could tailor it to his interest but also make sure that he got the needs that he would get in a public school or private school setting.”
Through her courses, she uses different tools that professionals use in the field to explain her lessons better.
James said she and her son enjoy their four-hour school day compared to a typical school day that usually lasts seven to eight hours.
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