Membership Policies and Procedures
Agreeing to our Statement of Faith in its entirety is REQUIRED for Membership Approval.
Statement of Faith
We believe in the Holy Scripture and fully accept the writings of the Old and New Testaments as the very Word of God, verbally inspired in all parts and therefore wholly without error as originally given by God, the only infallible, and authoritative rule of faith, life, and conduct. (Ps. 119:105, 133, 160; Prov. 30:5a; II Tim. 3:16-17; II Pet. 1:19-21)
Certain sins have become acceptable in our society and are clear violations of Scripture. In the spirit of I Corinthians 6:9-20, we as an organization recognize that some in the organization may have participated in these sins. When a person is born again, God forgives all sin. This is not an exhaustive list. Our purpose is to promote Biblical standards in these areas where society has drifted away from its Biblical roots. Therefore, we believe in order to preserve function and integrity of Agape Homeschool Group as the Body of Christ, and to provide a Biblical role model to its members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Agape in any capacity, or who serves as volunteers, agree to and abide by this Statement of Faith for the purposes of the faith, doctrine, practice, policy, discipline, building use, employment practices, etc.
- We believe that there is One God, eternally existent in three persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
- We believe in the Deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, His sinless life, His miracles, His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, His bodily resurrection, His ascension to the right hand of God the Father, and His personal return in power and glory.
- We believe that for the salvation of the lost and sinful man, Jesus is the only way to eternal life. Salvation from sin is by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ.
- We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit whose presence and powers are necessary for believers to live a Godly life and for the building of the Body of Christ.
- We believe in the power of prayer, both individual and corporate.
- We believe in the sanctity of human life and that each child is a gift from God, entrusted to his or her parents to be the primary educators, training them in accordance with God’s will and Word.
- We believe that parents have the God given responsibility for the care and training of their children.
- We believe in the spiritual unity of believers through our common faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and that individual doctrinal differences which may exist outside the aforementioned, should not hinder the unity of Christian home educators.
- We believe in the redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Rom. 10:9-10; I Cor. 6:9-11)
- We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. (Mark 12:28-31; Luke 6:31) Gossip, slander, hateful, and harassing behavior, and attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the morals of Agape Homeschool Group. However, preaching and teaching God’s Truth as revealed in Scripture is not hateful or harassing of any person.
- We believe that marriage and families are ordained and defined by God.
- We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct, complimentary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Gen. 1:26-27) Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.
- We believe that God created the human race as male and female and that all conduct with the intent to adopt a gender other than one’s birth gender is immoral and therefore sin. (Gen. 1:27; Deut. 22:5)
- We believe that God has established marriage as a lifelong, exclusive relationship between one man and one woman based on their DNA and that all intimate sexual activity outside the marriage relationship, whether heterosexual, homosexual, or otherwise, is immoral, and therefore sin. (Gen. 2:18-25; Ex. 20:14, 17, 22:19; Lev. 18:22-23, 20:13, 15-16; Matt. 19:4-6, 9; Rom. 1:18-31; I Cor. 6:9-20; I Tim. 1:8-11; Jude 7)
The Mission of Agape Homeschool Group is to be a Christ-centered community that connects and supports Christian homeschool families.
The vision of Agape Homeschool Group is to be an enduring Christ-centered organization that equips Christian homeschool families for God’s purposes by meeting a variety of educational (Prov. 22:6) and relational (II Peter 1:5-8) needs and which seeks to connect with the community to further God’s kingdom. (Acts 1:8)
Benefits of Membership
- Agape offers many fun and educational activities throughout the year such as family workshops and other enrichment activities
- Participation in co-op classes
- Community service projects are always welcome
- Networking with area homeschool and community events
- Participation in field trips
- Agape is also a discounted member of HSLDA (Home School Legal Defense Association) which means we get discounted rates on insurance and other perks. Please use this information to get use from this:
- Affiliate #5394399
- Discount #210200
Membership Requirements & Fee Information
Agape Membership is open to any homeschooling family that has read the information in the membership packet and indicated their agreement with the stated Mission, Statement of Faith, expectations, and general policies by submitting a signed application form online as well as membership and insurance fees.
Agape offers a yearly membership typically starting in the summer of every year for new members. This normally coordinates with enrollment for Fall Semester.
Cost for General Membership is:
- $20/full year (June 1– May 31)
- $10/half year (After November 1)
Cost for Insurance is:
Each campus location has an additional fee per family, per semester, as well as various class fees. See our current semester class list, including class descriptions and costs at www.agapehomeschoolgroup.org and choose your location to see those fees.
- Membership in Agape requires the participation of at least one legal parent.
- Children participating must be homeschooled.
- Applicants must have at least one school aged child.
- Applicants must complete background check information and consent yearly.
- Agape is a cooperative support group. Families must contribute and fulfill the needs of the group by teaching and/or classroom help and possibly being in a leadership role. Seek a board member for more information, direction, and guidance as necessary.
- Planning of a yearly activity is required. This could be something as simple as a park day or as grand as a field trip. Please see the leadership team at your campus with questions.
- Agape campus days are open to any homeschool family that is an Agape member, as enrollment space is available.
Background Check Procedures & Policy
Applicants must complete background information and consent form yearly. This applies to one Fall, Winter, and Spring Semester. The form is found in the membership application.
Applicants must read the following acceptance policy prior to submitting their background check form. Failure to follow any of the protocol stated below, or meet acceptance standards, will result in dismissal of the applicant to be a member.
The identity of accepted individuals having a questionable background will not be disclosed in the interest of privacy and to minimize liability.
If an applicant has convicted felonies in their past, please consider our guidelines for accepting criminal backgrounds below. If your background does not adhere to the acceptable criteria, please refrain from applying as we will have to deny it.
AGAPE WILL NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES ACCEPT ANY CRIMINAL CHARGES FOR THE FOLLOWING CASES:
- ANY abuse or neglect of children
- ANY sexual criminal act of ANY kind
- ANY felony where conviction or release from incarceration is fewer than five years prior to application
- These guidelines are applied to both the husband and wife as one applicant
If an applicant has convicted felonies in their past but meet the acceptable criteria below, they must submit a letter of consideration at the same time they submit their background check form:
- Agape Board of Directors is looking for full disclosure.
- Please advise the Executive Board if anyone living in your household is on ANY sex registry.
- Please advise the Executive Board in the letter of any felony charges that will turn up.
- Explain how Christ has changed your life and why you are interested in being a volunteer with Agape Homeschool Group.
- Please be prepared to meet with the Agape Executive Board in person as needed or requested.
Individuals with Criminal Backgrounds must agree to the following Terms of Service:
- Individual will not be allowed to teach or volunteer with children under the age of 10.
- Please be advised that at any time the church facility or an insurance provider can override Agape policy without notice and the Agape Executive Board of Directors will comply with the policy they set forth. This may require immediate dismissal of a volunteer.
- If questionable background check is found the Agape Executive Board reserves the right to further investigate proof of character through additional references, face to face interviews, and more in-depth background checks, with the cost being the responsibility of the applicant.
The Agape Executive Board of Directors will be responsible for processing background checks and determining eligibility.
AGAPE WILL NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES ACCEPT ANY FAMILIES WITH AN ADULT LIVING IN THE HOME THAT IS REGISTERED ON A SEX REGISTRY OFFENDERS LIST
Agape Executive Board reserves the right to revoke membership at any time for any reason deemed necessary for the integrity of Agape Homeschool Group.
- Agape is a Christ-centered organization.
- We aim to honor Jesus Christ at any Agape event in the form of actions and prayers both collectively and individually.
Golden Rule/Conflict Resolution
- Treat others as you would like to be treated.
- Show respect to each other.
- If you have an issue with someone, take the issue to him or her.
- If they do not listen, take someone as a witness to help.
- If someone comes to you speaking badly about someone, as him or her if they have gone to that person. If not, speak not.
- If you are unable to resolve the problem, please go to your co-op leadership team. Agape values and expects honesty and integrity. (Matt. 18:15-20)
- There is no limit to Agape’s general membership. However, there are limits to how many members each co-op location can have and limits to individual classrooms.
- Once that limit is reached the class is closed and you will be put on a waiting list based on first come first served.
Parent Participation and Cooperative Support
- Membership in Agape requires the participation of at least one legal guardian.
- If participating in campus days, one parent from each family is required to teach a class, help in a class, help clean the church after Agape functions or serve in another capacity.
- Each campus may have different levels of activity requirements.
- If participating in campus days, and a teacher is absent, you may be asked to fill in for the teacher or become a helper in the class.
- All parents attending and participating in co-op campus days are required to fill out the form for and clear a background check, including spouses.
- Attendance must be taken in each class, every day Agape meets, and on field trips.
- Teachers are required to submit a substitute lesson plan to the campus leadership team prior to the start of the semester should the teacher be unable to attend class for any reason.
- Two adults will be placed in every classroom/group of children.
- Children may not be left at an Agape campus, or any event, unattended.
- If you must leave for a short time, you must work accordingly with another parent willing to be responsible for your child/children and fill out a form to be given to the campus leadership. Please see the leadership of your campus to get that form.
- The person you leave in charge of your child/children must be at least 18 years of age.
- Teacher reimbursements for class materials will only occur after receipts supporting the purchase and a completed Reimbursement Form are turned in to the Campus Treasurer.
- Any donated classroom supplies must also be reported to the Treasurer for Agape records.
- Reimbursements will be done once a month unless special arrangements have been made.
- Any adult assigned to the nursery or tots are required to change diapers and/or escort children to the bathroom as necessary.
- Children assigned to the nursery or tots that are still in diapers or potty training are required to have a diaper bag labeled with the child and/or family name.
- Visitors should notify a member of campus leadership prior to the visit and are allowed to visit for one class day.
- Visiting students may follow a friend or other students to classes and parents are encouraged to view classes to get a better understanding and “feel” for our group.
- Upon arriving visitors need to check in with campus leadership.
- It is expected that all visitors adhere to Agape’s expectations and general policies for all members.
- If a visitor comes for more than one day there needs to be a background check for that person.
- We will pray at campus day more assembly and before all Agape activities and meals.
- Teachers are also encouraged to pray before class.
- No foul or course language will be tolerated.
- No crude jokes will be tolerated.
- Taking the Lord’s name in vain will not be tolerated.
- We value and expect honesty and integrity in conversation and deed.
Respect of Facility Use
- As members of this group individuals are expected to show respect to the buildings and spaces used by Agape.
- Agape is blessed to be able to use various facilities and want to show gratitude by making them look better than when we arrived!
- Teen groups will consist of any student ages 13-18 years of age.
- Adequate supervision is required at all Agape sponsored teen events, with a minimum of two adults.
Media (Movies/Videos/Music/Books/Photos) Should:
- Not contain any reference to drugs/alcohol.
- Not contain any subtle or overt reference to carnality or sexual promiscuity.
- Not contain any profanity or swear words.
- Not condone any unfaithfulness or other ungodly, disobedient lifestyle.
- Be in accord with our Statement of Faith.
- In a spirit of deference, consideration must always be given when determining proper types of music and volume.
- As a Christian group we want to honor God in all that we do. This includes our actions as well as our clothing attire.
- We have many young and impressionable men and women in our group and need to do our best to dress in an appropriate manner.
- Our goal is to teach our children to have respect for themselves and show consideration for others.
- The entire torso of every individual needs to be covered including midriff and cleavage of females.
- We do not want to see bra straps.
- Skirts and shorts must be a reasonable length.
- We should not be able to see high thigh/buttock area.
- If leadership notices a student is not properly clothed, a campus leadership team member will be in contact with the parent of that student and he/she will be asked to change their clothing.
- No illegal weapons or illegal substances will be allowed at any Agape event.
- Discretion should be used when allowing potentially harmful objects to a campus day (ie: knives for a whittling class) and should be approved by leadership and parents.
- Please be prompt to all Agape activities.
- Please arrive 15 minutes early as we will begin or leave on schedule.
- The impression we make on others is a part of our testimony.
- If you or one of your children have an illness or have had a fever, vomiting, or diarrhea in the 24 hours before an event or co-op classes please stay home.
- Each campus may implement their own illness policy based on the needs of their campus.
- If you are staying home from Campus Day as a teacher, please let leadership know as soon as possible in order to make arrangements for replacements.
- In the rare event that we have 50% of the adult campus day participants call in sick prior to a campus day we will cancel campus day by posting on our social media page, sending out an e-mail, or sending a text alert.
- If lice is discovered at a campus day, the child will be removed from class immediately, and parents will be notified via e-mail for documentation purposes.
- A child must be free from lice for at least 48 hours prior to returning to campus days.
- An assigned individual will need to do a check of the child once they return.
- If the area schools of a campus day location are closed due to inclement weather we will NOT meet.
- If the area schools of a campus day location are delayed because of inclement weather we will still meet on time.
- There may be other times in which the campus leadership may determine to cancel school.
- If we have an outdoor event planned and you are concerned about the weather, please do what you feel is best for your family.
- If the church you are meeting in has a funeral on a campus day the campus day may be canceled.
- Attempts will be made to let each member know if a campus day needs to be canceled by posting to social media, sending an email, and/or a text alert.
- The information in our directory is for use by its member families only, with the possible exception of business information.
- We ask that you respect some members’ desire to keep their personal information private.
- Please do not share any information from the directory with any outside individuals or organizations without permission.
Field Trip/Event Etiquette
As homeschoolers we are looked at with critical eyes. People want to know what we are about and if we are different from the rest of the world. Homeschoolers are generally associated with devout Christianity. We aren’t just representing homeschoolers; we are representing Christ. We make a big impression when we show up late or not at all and when our children are disrespectful during a class or tour. Let’s make sure we don’t make a bad impression. We want to shine for Him!
Please read and follow these guidelines:
- If there is a cost involved with a field trip or special event, the fee must be paid at the time of your registration, unless otherwise specified by the field trip coordinator.
- Please do not consider yourself registered for a field trip unless you have paid the fees.
- Those first to pay will be the first registered.
- Refunds because of your cancellation are dependent upon your giving proper notice of not being able to attend, the refund policy of the field trip destination, and/or if there is someone on the waiting list who is willing to step into your place.
- Please arrive 15 minutes before a field trip is to begin. This provides us the opportunity to give last minute instructions and to get organized before entering the facility quietly.
- Please be attentive, courteous, polite, and prepared with good questions for our tour guide.
- Remember to thank the tour guide at the end of the field trip. We encourage all families to follow-up with a thank you letter. What an added blessing to our host!
- It is a privilege to partake in a field trip.
- We understand that children will misbehave or just have a bad day occasionally; however, this should be corrected and inappropriate behavior addressed.
- Dangerous, belligerent, or blatantly disrespectful behavior may result in immediate expulsion from field trips for a set amount of time deemed appropriate by campus leadership.
- Your field trip coordinators will do their best to provide fun and educational field trips and provide information in a timely manner.
- If there are any questions, concerns, or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact the coordinators or campus leadership.
Disciplinary Policy for Children
One of our goals is to reinforce Godly characteristics. In as much, we expect everyone to conduct themselves in an appropriate manner, treating other people as they would like to be treated.
- Students are expected to follow instructions and to not be disruptive. No talking out of turn during class.
- Proper respect for those in authority over us must be given at all times.
- Please be kind, courteous, and respectful of other people, their beliefs and their property.
- Serve one another in love.
- Students should be either in the class for which they have registered or assisting in the class for which they are an aide to a teacher.
- Students may not wander during class.
- Please walk throughout the building.
- There are places where students are not permitted at each campus location. Please take note of those places and encourage your children to stay out of those places.
If a student or child is being disruptive and/or not following instructions the following steps need to be taken – preferably by either the parent (if they are in class) or the teachers. The following steps are not necessarily to be used as a set order, but rather to use what is best for each situation.
- First, begin by simply correcting the child.
- If the behavior continues or escalates that same day, take the child aside or out of the room and explain what is expected of him/her and discuss the consequences of misbehavior.
- If on the same day negative behavior continues one of the teachers will need to take the child to his/her parent and explain the behavior. We do not wish for the parent to become defensive with the adult who brings the child to the parent.
- If the behavior continues and/or becomes a chronic behavioral problem, the parent(s) will be informed that the child is not able to continue taking that class for the rest of the term and there will be no refund given.
- Campus leadership retains the right to expel any child or family from one or all Agape Homeschool Group classes if the student’s behavior is intentionally or recklessly dangerous, belligerent, or blatantly disrespectful.
- If an immediate removal of the student is appropriate the student should be taken directly to a campus leadership team will take up the issue with the parents and take appropriate measures. Campus leadership retains the right to expel any child or family from one or all classes. It also retains the right to revoke Agape membership at any time without any refund.
It is our desire that you will feel at “home” with Agape. Thank you for your joy and willingness to help us serve those around us. By following through with all of these things we can truly show the love of Christ. We are excited to have you as a part of our family!