1.  Big changes in Box Tops*
Box Tops for Education is in the process of changing over to a totally new system: from low-tech (scissors) to high-tech (phone app). In a nutshell, this is what you’ll do: 1. Download the Box Tops app to a smartphone, designating MassHOPE as the school to be credited. 2. Purchase products with the new Box Tops logo. 3. Within 14 days of purchase, using the app and your phone’s camera, scan the receipt. MassHOPE will automatically be credited with ten cents per Box Top. You can read the details HERE.
The changeover is taking place over a period of a few years and has already started. For the present, both the old (clipping Box Tops) and new (scanning receipts) systems are in place. As paper Box Tops are phased out, fewer and fewer products will have them, and more and more products will be switched over to the new system.
Will I still be able to earn convention credit? YES. When you sign up on the app and designate MassHOPE, you will see a “get credit” option where you can register for credit under your name. Box Tops automatically keeps track of credits, and MassHOPE is able to access this information. [Since MassHOPE will receive only a name without any contact information, we will be asking you to let us how you want your submissions to be credited. That system is not yet in place. Stay tuned for updates!]
Will I still be able to send in my paper Box Tops?YES.All present and future clipped Box Tops will be valid until their expiration dates. Keep sending them in.
Will there be any problems with this system? Unfortunately, YES.There already are. The technology is not yet working perfectly, and we doubt anyone can guarantee that it ever will work perfectly. We don’t know whether the problem is in individual phones, or the overall computer program, but there have been complaints about organizations and schools not being properly credited.
What should I do if I’m not getting as much credit as I should? Unfortunately, I don’t think there is anything we can do from our end. It may be frustrating, but probably most of your purchases will be properly credited. Try comforting yourself with the advantages of the new system: no clipping, no storage, and no mailing costs.
You can start using the new system immediately. And you can continue to use the old system until it’s completely phased out. If you have any questions, please contact Anne Smith at (978)372-1339 or volunteer@masshope.org.
*If you are unfamiliar with MassHOPE’s Box Tops program, see the information at the end of this newsletter in Item 16 and following.
2.  New! The MassHOPE Educator ID Card
Educator IDs are now available for benefits such as potential discounts at retailers. Order them from our website HERE.
3.  Homeschoolers welcome at Thayer Conservatory
Note: Thayer Conservatory’s website was incorrect in the last two newsletters. It is now www.thayerconservatory.org.
Thayer Conservatory in Lancaster, Massachusetts is still accepting new students in art, drama, and all musical instruments as well as voice. There is a homeschool chorus and different levels of orchestra. Many homeschoolers are studying here and a number of our faculty are homeschooling parents. Classes in beginning violin, ukulele, voice, and piano are available at special rates in order to make lessons more affordable for homeschooling families. Please see further information under the homeschool tab on our new website:
www.thayerconservatory.org. You may also call (978)368-2100 for more information.

4.  Please join us in observing the National Homeschool Day of Prayer
Friday, November 1, 2019 is this year’s date for the National Homeschool Day of Prayer.  Here is the link: http://homeschoolfreedom.com/prayer/. Join homeschoolers all across the nation and world in a special day of prayer.
5.  Flag football!
Are you ready for some flag football? MassHOPE’s 9th annual Turkey Bowl will be on Thanksgiving morning – November 28 – from 9:30-11 at Holden Chapel, 279 Reservoir Street, Holden. Come and join us for some fun and fellowship. Burn those calories before you even eat them! RSVP by November 25 to (508)829-0973, leaving your name, phone number, number in party, and your email address, OR just email the same info to info@masshope.org. Thank you! Hope to see you there!
6.  Registration open for Wachusett skiing
Registration for the The Clonlara Home School Ski Group at Wachusett Mountain is underway!  If you have a student 8 years or older interested in skiing or snowboarding on eight Fridays from January 3 – February 28  (taking February 21 off for vacation week), please register online at www.wachusett.com/schoolgroups and enter CLHS for the group code. Register before December 4 for best prices!  Parents can register at group price as well.  For more information see the website or contact Tammy Cassidy at jccustomwoodworking@verizon.net.  Also find us on Facebook at Clonlara Wachusett Friday Ski Group.
7.  Check out Mass Audubon offerings
Mass Audubon has sanctuaries, and programs for kids and families, ALL over the state, even in Boston!

8.  Christian ballet updated class schedule
Beautiful Feet Ballet School, a Christian ballet program in Marlborough, has updated their class schedule for the 2019-2020 season. Morning and afternoon classes are available for girls ages 18 months-12th grade. You are welcome to schedule a free trial class before registering. For more information, please visit www.beautifulfeetballet.com.

9.  Professional tutoring service: Next Level Up

From Next Level Up Tutoring:

Do you have a son or daughter who struggled last year with a particular subject or class in school? Are you looking for a way to help prepare them for this school year? Do you want to help boost their confidence, hone their perspective, and strengthen their fundamentals?

Check out Next Level Up Tutoring HERE:

NLU offers one-on-one tutoring either in your home (tutors are available in central and eastern Massachusetts) or at their West Boylston Learning Center.  They also have math and writing workshops on their menu.

How does NLU differ from other individual tutors or tutoring services? In addition to a traditional tutoring approach, NLU takes a broader, holistic view of the student and assesses the academic coaching pieces that need to be addressed, but are usually overlooked, like organization, time management, study habits, effort, motivation, and perspective.

Interested in learning more?  Contact: 781-540-1123 (direct line to the owner – Todd Blechner) or email: info@nextleveluptutoring.com.

10. Communicators for Christ Conference in Plainsboro, New Jersey October 11-12
From Cindy Clarkin, RI HOPE Chapter Sponsor

This dynamic ICC event is open to all families with school-age children and Professional Educators (home school, private, charter, and public in 1st through 12th grade and GAP year). Invite friends and family!

Many veteran home school families will remember the CFC conferences as inspiring for students and parents alike. Communicators for Christ is a 2-day immersive experience designed to empower parents and students (ages 6-18) to influence today’s culture through communication and leadership skills. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the community and wisdom of like-minded Christians intentionally pursuing the authentic connections and relationships in which influence flourishes. Our global team of adult and young adult instructors help families start where they are and begin the transformation into extraordinary leaders.
Not familiar with CFC? Watch the 3-minute video by Dr. Teresa Moon and the 1-minute video by Abi (2019 ICC Intern from New Zealand).
Communicators for Christ Conference Schedule:
Friday: 8:45 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. Conference
·         Lunch and Dinner
·         Evening Program – Open to the Public!
Saturday: 8:45 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Conference
·         Lunch
·         Closing Program
Register HERE. Host housing is available on a first-come-first-serve basis. For more information or to find other locations around the globe, please visit the CFC Fall Conference site HERE.
Cindy Clarkin
RI HOPE Chapter Sponsor – Cindy.Clarkin@ICCinc.org or (401)392-3612
11.  One-day campaign management school
From Robert Aufiero, Volunteer Coordinator at Renew Massachusetts Coalition

We have again partnered with the Foundation for Applied Conservative Leadership (FACL) to conduct a campaign management school on October 12. Like our political leadership school, this training will help you become a stronger and more effective activist for your values, by teaching you the ins and outs of electoral campaigns.

FACL Campaign Management School
Saturday, October 12, 2019
Registration: 8:30 – 9:00 a.m.     
Class: 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.   
Baptist Convention of New England, 87 Lincoln Street, Northborough
Regular Ticket Price: $40
Student Discount Ticket Price: $25
Includes light breakfast, lunch, and training materials

The Campaign Management School is designed for:
(1)  First-time candidates
(2)  Elected officials who want to run better campaigns
(3)  Volunteers, staff, and those who want to influence the public policy process

This will be an intense one-day course, similar, but different from, other one-day schools. The following will be covered:

·         The REAL Nature of Politics
·         The core of every campaign, including the Lincoln 4 Step; building your campaign plans; an introduction to timeline budgeting
·         Advanced campaign communications, including using the Leesburg grid, framing issues, and targeting your communications
·         Basic fundraising calling, mail, email, and events
·         How to set up (and tear down) your campaign

If you can attend, please register as soon as possible, so we have an accurate head count:

Register HERE: https://www.faclevents.org/northborough-ma-1-day-12oct2019

If you have any questions, please contact Robert at Robert@RenewMACoalition.orgor (781)307-1494, or Brad at brad@libertyclubhouse.org or (508)400-7007.

12.  28th annual MFI fundraising banquet in October
From Michael King, Massachusetts Family Institute (MFI):

Thanks for your continued support of our shared mission to strengthen and protect the family, life, and liberty in Massachusetts!

We need your support for our shared mission. In addition to the Infanticide and Physician Assisted Suicide Bills, our legislators have already passed the Counseling Ban this year, that restricts the therapy speech of therapists. These therapists want to help minors feel comfortable in their male and female bodies and not succumb to the confusion so many young people face today about suggested variations of gender identity and sexual orientation. We will be announcing some great new developments soon regarding our current work on the Counseling Ban issue.

Join us for our 28th Annual Fundraising Banquet on Friday, October 18 at the Newton Marriott Hotel, with special guest John Stonestreet from the Colson Center and Breakpoint Radio. Half of tickets already sold! Hear about great victories this year for life and religious liberty!  Hear about and meet a young teenage girl who started a Bible Club and WON FIRST PLACE last spring at PUBLIC SCHOOL TALENT SHOW when their club sang…a WORSHIP SONG!?

Cannot make it?  Consider making an annual donation to support our shared mission to strengthen and protect the family in Massachusetts!

For more information on banquet:  http://www.mafamily.org/event-items/28th-annual-fundraising-banquet-with-john-stonestreet/.

For more information on how you can annually support our shared mission: http://www.mafamily.org/donate/.


Michael King
Director of Community Alliances
Massachusetts Family Institute
A local associate of Focus on the Family
(978) 204-9131 (cell)

13.  Convention workshop recordings
Visit our website to order your recordings HERE today! Once you get the recordings, follow along with the handouts that can still be found on most speakers’ pages of our website. (Downloads available for workshops designated with an icon.)
14.  Are you on our mailing lists?
To those who have been recently added to our email list through our website: if you would also like to be added to our “snail mail” list to receive information (such as our print newsletter) via the U.S. Postal Service, please send your full name and complete mailing address to newsletter@masshope.org.
15. Your news items wanted

Do you know of an event or activity in or near Massachusetts that would edify or interest the homeschool community? Email Anne Smith at

ewsjfamily@startmail.comand we will review it for possible inclusion in the MassHOPE Messenger.

For-fee services: The MassHOPE Messenger is a biweekly e-newsletter that is sent free to approximately 2500 mailboxes. Unfortunately, it is not free to distribute. This cost increases each year, and MassHOPE has limited funds. Therefore we charge a nominal fee of $10 for unsolicited submissions from individuals, and from most organizations or groups unaffiliated with MassHOPE, who wish to advertise their for-fee services. Items will ordinarily run in two consecutive issues.

16.  Remember to “Like” MassHOPE on Facebook
“Like” MassHOPE’s Facebook page: facebook.com/MassHOPE?fref=ts. You’ll be encouraged in your homeschooling journey and will receive all updates for upcoming events.

17.  Do you receive The Voice of HOPE?
MassHOPE publishes a quarterly print newsletter,
The Voice of HOPE. In addition to announcements you might also find in the Messenger, we provide three or four full-length articles on a variety of homeschooling topics. If you would like to add your name, please send your name and “snail mail” address to newsletter@masshope.org.
18. Support MassHOPE through AmazonSmile
Do you shop at Amazon? If you shop through AmazonSmile, Amazon will make a donation to MassHOPE! If you’re not already signed up, you can do so more easily than ever. To start supporting our organization, simply click this link, which is unique to MassHOPE:  http://smile.amazon.com/ch/04-HYPERLINK “http://smile.amazon.com/ch/04-3220412”3220412. That’s all!  From then on, when – and only when – you enter the Amazon website through amazonsmile.com, Amazon will automatically donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to MassHOPE. Thank you for supporting the work of your Christian state homeschool organization!
19.  Submit Box Tops for convention savings!
Want to submit Box Tops for 2020 convention credit but aren’t sure how to proceed? There are now two distinct processes for submitting. See item #1, above, to learn about the “new” process. To continue with the “old” process, see the detailed instructions below.