Home-schooling: tips from a parent who started a year ago

Interest in home-schooling has blown up during the coronavirus crisis, as an increasing number of families take their children’s education into their own hands instead of waiting for districts to decide whether or not to reopen, and how. Doing so can cost up to $1,800 annually per child, reports Time4learning.com in Kiplinger’s. Nevertheless, a new study shows that home-schooling is at least on the minds of 80 percent of parents out there. Abby Schwartz, who has been home-schooling three of her four children for more than a year, thought she…

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Fairfield store stands proud with LGBTQ Pride, Black Lives Matter message

FAIRFIELD — A few years ago, Paul Praither saw a headline that wrenched his heart: a teenager that worked for him at Everybody’s Whole Foods, who was undergoing a transition from one gender to another, had chosen to end his life. “He was a really nice kid. I wish he would have said something. I wish I would have said something,” Praither said. The tragedy inspired Praither to lead an LGBTQ renaissance at Everybody’s — a visual explosion of acceptance, equality and diversity that has blossomed this summer into a…

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Your Words: “He”

Due to popular demand, we are adding a new feature in The Real MainStream: “Your Words,” featuring poetry and prose submitted by our readers. Our debut poet: Coralville resident Katie James, pictured here with her son Ro. “Basically, I am a gay mom who is also raising a 13-year-old trans guy. Being the parent of a trans kid is a unique experience, but seeing your child bloom into exactly the person they were meant to be is one of the most rewarding things any parent can witness. There are so…

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PrideCon, coming Feb. 29, offers fun and learning to Iowa LGBTQ youth

IOWA CITY — The sixth annual PrideCon for LGBTQ youth is coming Feb. 29, with new workshops, expanded art offerings, and another year of educational activities for parents, too. About 80 kids have already registered for this free daylong conference coordinated by United Action for Youth. That tops last year’s record-breaking attendance of 75 youth from throughout Iowa for the day of education, networking, socializing, art, and food. Registration is encouraged right up until the day of the event by clicking www.unitedactionforyouth.org/pridecon. The event is 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.…

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Cedar Rapids Roller Girls aim to support Tanager Place’s LGBTQ Center with Feb. 28 ball

The team will donate a portion of its proceeds from its 2nd Annual Black & Blue Ball Feb. 28 to the center, which serves about 400 teens a year and aims to serve even more. CEDAR RAPIDS — Two years ago, the Cedar Rapids Roller Girls cancelled an entire season because they were so direly in need of rebuilding their team and organization. What a difference it made: today, the Roller Girls are back up to full-squad strength and have 25 regular participants. And, they’re hosting their second annual Black…

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Iowa Safe Schools leads fight against conversion therapy

DES MOINES – A renewed effort is on to ban conversion therapy in Iowa, and Nate Monson is optimistic that the 2020 legislative session will generate some form of significant progress in outlawing a practice widely regarded as abuse. “This is a bipartisan issue,” says Nate Monson, head of Iowa Safe Schools, the nonprofit that is leading a charge against conversion therapy. “A lot of people don’t realize that seven of the bans in other states, done by executive order, were signed by Republican governors. This is something I believe…

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Teens who need coats, clothes should head to UAY Tuesday

IOWA CITY — An estimated 400 youth are expected to find needed clothes and coats Tuesday during the annual UAY Clothing Drive for Youth in downtown Iowa City. From 4:30 to 8:30 p.m., youth of all ages and their families are encouraged to visit the UAY Swaim Youth Center, 355 Iowa Ave., to “shop” through racks and piles of coats, sweaters, formal wear, T-shirts and more. “This has been going on for about a decade,” says Kai Kiser, Americorps volunteer with UAY. “We started this when we saw youth were…

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Support United Action for Youth tomorrow — from home or on your bike

United Action for Youth is working to spread word: you can still show your support during Sunday’s Ride 4 Youth without going out in the rain! “Virtual riders” are welcome and encouraged for the 7th Annual Ride 4 Youth, says Mickey Hampton, development director for the youth nonprofit. “You can support the event tomorrow from the comfort of your own home,” she said. “And, you can register the actual day of the event.” United Action for Youth (UAY) holds its biking fundraiser every year, and the event is supposed to…

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Teens “shatter the silence” with spoken word

DES MOINES — In a world where many of us are still ignored, a group of talented high school poets in Des Moines turned to spoken word as a way to shatter the silence. They take the stage in hopes to share the stories they’ve kept secret, or to shed light on those struggles their loved ones face. Influenced by different art forms and cultures, each of them brings a unique style; and through harnessing the power of spoken word, they find their own home and growth. Youth Speaks is…

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