Welcome to TEA

Proposed changes to the Home Instruction COMAR

Dear TEA Families,

Recently, on his last day working at MSDE, Richard Scott sent an email (click here to read)  to a number of the people he has worked with on the proposed changes to the home instruction COMAR. In the email, he said that based on over 300 public comments received, MSDE has decided to propose the changes that TEA recommended to their initial language. These new changes will be presented to the MD State Board of Education at their next meeting, January 26. 

Thanks go to everyone who submitted comments. I am delighted that this decision was made so quickly and that we were informed of it well in advance of the next meeting. I know Richard was working hard to get lots of work completed before leaving, so we are especially appreciative that our COMAR matter was one of those things. Even though these changes now have to go through the same process as before, I am confident that the Board will vote affirmatively based on MSDE’s recommendation.  I again thank everyone who took time to understand the issues and send comments. I will keep you posted on these developments.   Warmest wishes for 2016!  ~ Wendy

Click here to read original TEA’s assessment of the proposed Home Instruction COMAR changes and read the full text of the proposed language.

Dear TEA Families,

As the spring semester moves forward, from February to June, I will be out of the office two to three days a week doing reviews and conducting activities. This means it is likely to take longer for me to reply to emails and requests for help, and my responses may be briefer than normal. So, please factor in extra time to get my reply during this hectic review season, which is very similar to a tax accountant’s schedule leading up to April 15th! Yes, it really is that crazy-busy for me through June!

Speaking of reviews, my schedule is jam packed during these months, so it is difficult, if not impossible, for me to reschedule your review date and time once we arrange it. So, please do your best to keep our scheduled appointment open because I may have to assign you to another reviewer if you need to change your date or time. I will be contacting all other TEA families enrolled in Option 2 later this month to set up their review appointments with our TEA reviewers or other TEA family if you are enrolled in Option 3.q

Our March 29th TEA Time guest speaker is Prof. Christopher Reed, Chair of the Film & Moving Image Department at Stevenson University who will present a workshop on “Creating Terrific Videos”.  However, in advance, Prof. Reed asked me to survey our teens so he will know the level of experience they have to help him tailor his talk. I will send that survey to you by separate email later this week, so please be looking for it!

Don’t forget to check out the Summer Opportunities for Teens notice that went out last week and is uploaded to TEA’s Member page. 

Look out for the next round of snowy weather!



Note to Inquiring Families: Limited enrollment is still available. Please contact TEA as explained below.

Are you interested in learning more about how The Excelsior Academy supports families and students in their education endeavor? Then please take time to read the information on our website to learn about our enrollment options, and our activities and services specifically for 7th to 12th graders, including college admission counseling. If you would like more information, please submit the information requested using the online inquiry form under “Enrollment", and I will reply as soon as my summer/early fall schedule allows. Using this online form is the only way inquiring families can get a reply from my office. I look forward to chatting with you!

The Excelsior Academy

The Excelsior Academy (TEA) is a highly respected home education oversight program registered with the Maryland State Department of Education to provide legal oversight to Maryland homeschool students. It is directed by a home education professional with 30 years experience in the field. TEA knows that each child deserves a truly individualized learning experience and gives families the freedom to create a learning program that best meets their child's needs while fully complying with all State regulations. TEA is supportive of all homeschool methods, from traditional to whole child-centered, and has no religious affiliation requirements.

What are people saying about TEA?

  • Thank you so much for all that you do!!! I feel so blessed to have found The Excelsior Academy, and just in case you ever forget, you are making life and homeschooling infinitely better for all the families who have come after you!
  • Again, I can't begin to tell you what a wonderful experience TEA has been. You have been so wonderful in providing information and any and all help we have needed both academically and emotionally. Your knowledge extends to all aspects of education. You have been truly invaluable!
  • One of the best things about you is your ability to make us feel that the world is open to us and all we have to do is reach for it. :) My daughter was smiling from ear to ear when we finished and I felt very relieved also.
  • Thank you for all you do. You always make things special and fun for the kids.  We love your attitude and enthusiasm.
  •  You are ever so thoughtful and making people feel so welcome. And as always, it was so great to see your smiling face and feel the exuberant presence you bring to a room.  We as TEA families are blessed to have you as our "fearless leader".  
  • Thank you so much for a wonderful graduation celebration today!  My family and I were so impressed with how warm and intimate the commencement ceremony was.  My mother in law even commented that this was the "best" graduation she has ever attended (and she has been to quite a few for her grandchildren. I am extremely honored to be a part of The Excelsior Academy family.
  • Thanks for all you did for us. Homeschooling was the best decision we could have made.
  • You words of encouragement kept me going many a day.
  • Our homeschool community is so blessed to have you as a leader.  The love and dedication you give to each and every kid is just amazing!
  • I remember last summer when I was thinking about doing this and full of fear - you said "if you do this, I guarantee when we talk next year you'll tell me your son is happier, is making friends and things are working much better." Well, you were completely right. Your words stuck with me and it has all come true. I'm taking it a year at a time - but I must say I can't really see myself ever sending him back to traditional school. We'll see, but for now, this is working!! Thanks a bunch