Frequently Asked Questions
What are the smallest and largest class sizes? Class sizes are determined between the tutor and South Heights. The tutor determines the appropriate number of students for his/her subject matter. South Heights works with the tutor taking into consideration facilities and unique class requirements.
Are the South Heights classes accredited? No. South Heights is not a school or an accrediting organization. Most classes cover a course of study that typically earns a half or a whole credit. The parents are responsible for determining credits earned and then placing them on a transcript.
Will South Heights provide transcripts for classes taken? No. Transcripts are the responsibility of the primary educational institution. This is the parent’s responsibility in the home school setting.
Will my student receive a report card? Each tutor will give you an evaluation. If it is a course that uses tests and percentage points, the tutor will give you the student’s total percentage. If it is a more subjective course, like art or theatre, the tutor will give you a more general evaluation of the student's work.
Then the parent assigns the grade for the transcript or report card. Some parents use a 90%=A standard. Others use a 93%=A standard. And some consider how much time the student spent on a class.
Another reason the tutors do not assign letter grades is that South Heights is not a school and, therefore, does not have the authority to assign grades. The parent is the final authority in the homeschool.
Can you guarantee my child’s educational success? No, we are not an individualized tutoring situation. South Heights may not be the best choice if you have a student with moderate to severe learning disabilities. We are best suited to provide qualified instruction and classroom experiences that support the educational process that must be maintained in the home.
Why would I enroll my home educated child in South Heights? Reasons to enroll your child may be that your student desires more interaction with teens in a Christian academic environment, or perhaps there are some areas of his/her education you’d like to have take place in a classroom setting.
How do I choose which class or classes are best for my student? Choose classes based on parent and student need. If, for example, you are successful when helping your student learn science, then you wouldn’t choose a science class at South Heights. If, on the other hand, you don’t have the materials or opportunities to learn public speaking skills at home, that would be a good class to choose.
How many classes should I choose? Remember that each class has daily homework requirements. Plus, you have other areas of study required for your student in your home. Consider the general requirements for your student in the upcoming year; then carefully lay out your goals for this year. This should help you determine what classes your student needs and how many classes your student has time for. Most students should not be taking more than a total of 4 or 5 core classes plus 1 to 3 electives. The “total” count should include any courses taken, whether online, independently or at SHCC.
Why Email over Phone Use?
Why can’t you process my registration without an email address? E-mail keeps our communication costs down and is the quickest way to communicate time sensitive information. There are many places to set up free e-mail without accessing the web. You can use a friend or relative’s e-mail address. Be sure to check it regularly.
If you have a phone number, why do I have to use e-mail to communicate? Multiple parents working out of different homes run this organization. We do not have a business office with a full-time receptionist. In an emergency situation where you need to contact your child or the on-site administrator, please call 952-380-7253. Please do not call the Berean Office.
Why do I have to make out each class enrollment check to the individual tutors? The tutors are independently hired by the home educating parents. They are not employees of South Heights.
Isn’t the fee of $15 just for being late to pick up my student at the end of the day a bit steep? Consider it overtime pay for the on-site administrator who had to wait with your student.
May I use my expenses at South Heights as a tax deduction? Yes on Minnesota, No on Federal.
See: “Take Credit for Education” in your Minnesota Dept. of Revenue Booklet. Minnesota allows a subtraction or credit for certain educational expenses. If your student meets Minnesota’s requirements, and depending on your family’s income level, the tutoring expenses you pay at South Heights may qualify for a credit or subtraction on your Minnesota Return.
The tutor must be a qualified instructor, by Minnesota Department of Revenue definition. That would include a licensed teacher or a person with any baccalaureate. Check the biographies to see if your tutor qualifies. Even if the class qualifies as an educational expense, the actual deductibility or eligibility for credit will depend on your individual tax circumstances.
This general information does not constitute tax or legal advice. If you have any further questions, please contact the Minnesota Department of Revenue or your personal CPA.
Why do subjects that are the same have different grades assigned? When there is enough interest, two of the same class may be offered. It will make for more similar grouping of abilities and allow the tutors to adapt the classes slightly to be either more challenging or more age appropriate in emphasis.
What if I want to enroll my child in a class that is outside of his grade group? Choosing a class outside of your grade group is possible. Tutor approval is required prior to registration.
Why do duplicate classes list 9th grade in both classes? Ninth grade seems to be a “bridging” year. Depending on your family, (sibling situations, position, etc.), social maturity, your church situation, and/or neighborhood, your student may blend better in one or the other of the classes. Because it is a “bridging” year, most 9th graders will do well in either class offered.
If my child’s class is confirmed, is it guaranteed to take place? Classes, which have tutors quit for any reason, are not guaranteed to continue. The board members of SHCC will do their best to find a qualified replacement in a timely way. However, if one cannot be found, the tutor will make financial refunds on a prorated basis, depending on how many classes will be missed.
Lost & Found?
Where will miscellaneous items be kept between class days? We have a storage bucket in a locked closet for forgotten items. The student may check with the on-site administrator the following week to retrieve any items left from the week before. At the end of the semester, any remaining unclaimed items will be donated to a local charity.
How will I retrieve school materials that are left but necessary for weekly assignments? E-mail South Heights and arrange for pick-up.
What happens when my student misses a class? The student is responsible for getting the lecture notes from a classmate and getting any class handouts and assignments from the tutor. The tutor will not re-teach the lesson to your student.
A monitored study hall is provided from 8:45 a.m. until 3:20 p.m. on Thursdays. There is no monitored study hall on Fridays.
Will my student ever have a substitute? Yes, in the case of illness, prohibitive travel due to weather or possibly a vacation, your tutor will hire a substitute to take a class session. If they have to miss a class and are unable to hire a substitute, they will communicate the assignments to each student.
Tours for Prospective Students
Are there any tours available to experience what SHCC is like? Prospective students are encouraged to attend a 1.5-hour South Heights experience in April called “LIVE On Tour” (usually the fourth Thursday in April), which allows prospective students to move through three 15-minute class periods and attend a snack time in the study hall/lunch room, along with playing a simple game, while parents attend a question/answer session. If you are unable to attend during the “Live On Tour,” see the section entitled “Visitors.”
Why are the educational facilitators called “tutors”? South Heights is not a school. It is an adjunct educational organization. As a supplemental tutoring organization, the highly qualified instructors we hire must legally be called tutors.
How does South Heights choose their tutors for parents to hire? We check references, conduct interviews, look at their credentials, and seek people who are supportive of home education. Because they are not employees of South Heights, we cannot guarantee their performance.
How much do the tutors make? Compare the following with the cost of a half-hour lesson elsewhere. After the tutor reimburses us for the rental of the building, they are earning approximately $3.25, for each student every half hour. This does not take into account any time required for lesson planning or grading of papers. This is also prior to subtracting for class expenses and personal taxes.
Can visitors come to campus or to class? Please see our description under “Tours.” If you are unable to attend during the “Live On Tour,” then yes, parents and potential students are welcome to visit a class. First they must get permission through the info@SouthHeights.net email address at least 3 days prior to their visit so that the tutor may be notified. Then they must check in with the on-site supervisor before entering the classroom.
For the safety of those within our rented space:
How will we be notified of a closing due to bad weather? Cancellation of classes due to bad weather will be listed on our website by 7:45 a.m.: www.SouthHeights.net. We will do our best to be open every class day. The Berean church staff may also make decisions about the use of their building during a weather emergency that precludes any alternate choice we might make.
How will we make up missed classes due to inclement weather? There will be no make-up days unless we have to cancel twice due to weather-related problems. In the case of one missed day, whether it’s due to weather or a personal problem (death or illness) of your tutor, he/she will contact you with necessary assignments for making up the missed lesson. For most classes, we have a substitute plan in case of emergencies.