By Todd Kangas, MPE President
The annual MPE conference wrapped up recently. Here are some highlights:
- Attendance was up 7 percent from last year.
- We had 240 come through the Parents of Preschoolers program, seeing if homeschooling would be in their future.
- The MPE Kids program drew over 300.
- Workshops and vendors were both well received.
The biggest issues seem to focus on location and parking. The only other location that we could work with would be the downtown KC Convention Center, but instead of free parking with a long walk, there would be paid parking (and still a long walk).
Please know that we are aware of the challenges, but there is no work around at this time.
In our survey of attendees, we asked: Share your favorite part of the conference. What’s the most valuable thing you gained from this conference?
I’ve included a variety of comments to present a snapshot of what some attendees experienced. I was encouraged from this conference feedback and wanted to pass it along. Here you go:
- “Vision to lead children, step up, and the BIG future available to my family.”
- “It’s hard to nail down one thing. I would say it’s being around so many likeminded families, being edified in the Word, while also having opportunities to minister to others. It’s a package deal. 🙂 “
- “We have discovered that the best part of these conferences is the spiritual nourishment that we receive. The informational, educational, “How To” parts are always helpful, but the spiritual aspect is what keeps us coming back.”
- “Chance to get to know other homeschool parents – especially the ones doing the sessions and talk to them and “pick their brains” for ideas.”
- “Meeting with other parents and reminding me that homeschooling is manageable. This is also a gift from the presenters who reminded me what is important!”
- “I can homeschool the way that works best for my child. Do not have to fit a mold.”
- “The reassurance that we were doing what was best for our family and knowing that we were not alone with our concerns.”
- “How can I pick just one thing? I love spending the weekend with my Hubby growing closer as a couple, parents and a homeschool family.”
- “I really enjoy the fellowship at this conference, as well as being able to receive encouragement from so many other moms. I’ve attended as a teenager (Page) and several years as a POP. The 2016 year will be my first with a child in kindergarten.”
- “The flexibility and variety of workshops.”
- “I left the conference feeling renewed in both my spiritual walk and in my ability to teach another year.”
- “Confidence and encouragement that God can (and is) in my homeschool and it doesn’t have to be MY perfection or organization or intellect that makes it succeed.”
- “I really liked the reminders about having a grace-filled home.”
- “Giving me a renewed sense of energy for homeschooling. Also, being able to talk to the vendors that I have been online stalking all year was invaluable.”
- “Knowing what I needed to do as far as the state laws were concerned and figuring out the different styles of homeschooling.”
- “I went with a friend on Saturday. The things we talked about in the 75 min drive were added to and enhanced by the first session we attended together. We then sat and talked about it for half an hour and then again at lunch and then a session I attended in the afternoon added to our conversation on the way home. It all fit together to address some problems both of us were having in educating our respective struggling learners.”
- “Confidence! Knowing that my kids are WANTING to do school with me and seeing the skills they have achieved helps during a weekend like this.”
I see that the conference meets many needs and continues to be a very worthwhile endeavor. I am so glad that so many members take advantage of this event. On behalf of the conference committee, it is our pleasure to serve the homeschool community. God bless you and enjoy the summer!
Want to get a head start on our 2016 conference? Join the more than 169 people who have signed up on our Facebook event.
We’re collecting suggestions from all of you on what type of workshops, speakers and vendors you’d like to see next year. Leave us a comment on our Facebook event or on this blog post – we appreciate your feedback!