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Comedy and then the magic
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Dakota, first of all, good luck with the convention, my best friend will be competing against you, hehe. Look out for him =) Well, I will have to tell you that I was in homeschooled programs my entire life where I did not need the tutelage of my mother. and I also had to go to class every once in a while but it was not entirely necessary and I could make it up anytime so there I still ahd the social part of it. we still had the proms, the dances, the events, ya know, all that jazz. I suggest you PM me and I could maybe try to hook you up in one of these programs. Believe me, magic is very very important to me and to you too. Your education, is a little more important unfortunately. I had to turn down a two week run in vegas because it woudld have not worked with my college schedule. I was bummed, but I was thinking, hey I still got time to work on my magic and make it better. If I am where I am right now, and people want to already book me, they hey, how bad will people want me when I get out of school? =)
"Always Make It Magic Plus Laughs" - R.I.P. Mark Hendrickson
Pakar Ilusi
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All great advice...

Just my prayers that you do greater things with your Magic!

Stay Strong...
"Dreams aren't a matter of Chance but a matter of Choice." -DC-
Doc Pepper
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Black Hills of South Dakota
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From the above posts, there's not much else to say. I'm sure I speak for many when I say `Good Luck' and hope this goes well for you ... and your Mom. I think you are a very lucky young man to have her .. and she is very lucky you have you.
But then, I doubt if y'alls relationship is just luck. Bet cha there's a lot of work making that kind of closeness... Doc
The Doctor will see you now! ;-)
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Profile of massimo
Depending on what state you are in, parents have a very large obligation to see that their kids are eductaed up to a certain age. I do not agree that just because you can demonstrate your magical that the judge will be easy on your mom. He will see it as his legal duty to uphold the law (if that law applies in your state) that you receive your education. You may wish for a judge that likes and/or knows magic, but I doubt it will happen. If your mom can afford it she should seek legal advise. If she can not afford it, look into legal aid or try asking firms if they can do this "Pro Bono".
It is better to protect your mom's and your rights now, than to have them taken away.
annie williams
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It's a shame you don't have a performing arts school in the district. They would be much more supportive of the training and competitions. However, ask around your school district and find out how many days the basketball/football players miss for events. While these are school-sponsored events, this number may help you in front of a judge. (I am an attorney who works for a judge) Your mother also should give the court an idea of the hours and types of training involved in magic. It is a serious business that requires not only physical, but mental training. Also, economics in how to run a business. Much involves math, physics, etc. Play that up! Especially how you do your homework first! This is no different than a person training for ice skating competitions, gymnastics, hockey, etc. However, there is a realistic chance that this will help fund future educational possibilities (read college). My sons are 10 and 13, and we are taking them out of school for the Battle of Magicians. No one in their private school will complain because the owner of the Steelers takes his kids out for the pro-bowl, the superbowl, etc. The kids must make up their work, and they maintain high grade point averages.
Bob Sanders
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It has been a while since I heard from your mom about this. Are things working out?

Good Luck!

Bob and Lucy
Magic By Sander
Bob Sanders

Magic By Sander / The Amazed Wiz
Dakota Rose
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Dakota Rose
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Hi everyone,

Well, Mom got a couple of letters and a couple of phone calls warning her if I missed 1 more day of an unexcused absense, that they would have to take further actions. So, I'm definetly not going to miss any more school this year.

Unfortunately, the school did lower my grades one grade letter. I had all A's and B's this quarter and they lowered them to B's and C's. I was pretty upset but Mom said not to worry about it. She said she knew how hard I worked to keep them up.

So anyway, it looks like another year has gone by without too many problems. We were really worried for awhile.

I just wanted to thank everyone for their support and encouragement. Mom really had herself prepared for the judge from everyone's advice. We both thank you so, so much. It's pretty incredible how much support and caring we got from all of you. Magicians really are a brotherhood.

Your friend,

Dakota Rose
Dream things that never were and say, "Why not."

Junior Editor Linking Ring - Youth Forum
Bob Sanders
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Thanks for the update. It sounds like you and your mom are doing a better job of coping than is the school system. Good for you!

This school year will soon be over. It may be wise to use the time off to negotiate a more acceptable agreement for next school year. Your mom knows how to contact me personally to help with that. Don't let her be too shy to call, if I can help. I think Governor Taff is too smart not to help you. He just may need the opportunity to see how. Providing that step is something I would enjoy doing for both of you.

Take care.

Magic By Sander
Bob Sanders

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Great to hear! Keep the faith!
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Best thing to do is have your mom homeschool you. I will praying that all comes to best for you. The school system has no clue what is best for you.
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I am going to hope that you stay in school. The social interaction is very important.

When my son left to live with his mother, she decided to home school him. He really needed the social skills that school helps to develop.

I am sure that you have learned how to work the system and make school work better you.

Any ideas on the new act yet?

Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
Write direct as I will be turning off my PM's.
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As a child actor I've been in similar situationg.

However in Scotland (indeed the UK) there is a "Child Performance" contract that I took out. This allowed me to act in TV/Film/Stage for up to something like 40 days per year including school days. I think thou after 20 days a "tutor" had to be provided.

I'm not sure whether the contract would take into account Magic events. As I said my only experiences of this situation was with acting.

Also, Scotland can, and has, sent parents to jail as there children did not attend school. But this children in entertainment contract helps allow young people to perform and no have to deal with the repercussions of absenteeism.

Does anything like this exist elsewhere?

Craig Steele : MindFusion
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I admire you and your achievements!!! As well as the loving support of your mom!!! Only a few people can achieve these things at such an early age. I don't have any else to give you but the support and prayers of my family.

Wishing well,
Imagination is more important than knowledge!!! -- Albert Einstein
David Eichler
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What's the word? How are things?


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Hmmm, Craig might have an idea.

Perhaps your mom can check about the possibility of having a tutor handle your education while you are at conventions? Child actors here in the US also have tutors when they are on location, and even when they live in the area where they film, but need to stay near the set.

Depending upon the regulations in your state and school district, maybe some of the folks also attending, who are teachers, could help.

I agree with those above who encourage you to stay in a formal school, though not necessarily the current one. The interpersonal skills that are gained are at least as important than the content of the classes. (These skills are different from the ones you gain at conventions, which are also good.) This helps you become the person that you are (and will become), as opposed to the information that you know. Given what you have said, there is no doubt that you will handle the academics in any non-negative environment.

All, of course, IMHO. (Trained as a teacher, and have worked as a Social Worker in schools.)

Good luck!
JM Smile Smile

Balloons, Magic, Mayhem & More!

"... destined to take the place of the MudShark in your mythology... " FZ
Doug Higley
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This will mean nothing I suppose...but I made a habbit of avoiding High School at every opportunity. I HATED it. I graduated with 45% attendence on the honor roll in one subject because I always managed to take the tests and pass. I attended graduation and was NOT given a diploma at that time. There was a stipulation that I would have to be employed for two years witout missing any time...thenm I would recieve the Diploma. I joined the way to miss days.
Poibnt is...I was sent my Diploma...big deal....NO ONE EVER saw it...NO ONE ever asked to see it. "Are you a high school graduate?" "Yes" "Move along"

'This too shall pass' is absolute truth. Your mom is a gem. My high school sucked...I didn't...and that's what counted. During my days not going to school I spent at The Museum Of Natural History in NY City...that was my chosen education and his has worked wonderfully for a lifetime.
You'll do well and the only thing is your greedy school won't get funding for your missing days. Tough beans.

Higley's Giant Flea Pocket Zibit
Dakota Rose
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Hi Everyone,

Thank you all so much for all your support. It was really tough going for a while. I did miss too much school last year and I did get lower grades because of it. They did send Mom several threatening letters but they never followed through with it. YEAH!!!

Well, one more year has gone by. (This is the fifth year that we have been dealing with this.) I'll be in eighth grade this year so I have 5 more years to go. Mom and I decided that we will still try to miss as little as possible but we are still going to go to magic conventions. We both feel strongly that it is an important part of my education and future.

I guess we will just have to deal with the threats (and lower grades) for the next five years till I graduate high school.

Like I said before, I love school so I'm not going to try home schooling. I want to graduate high school and go to college. It's just too bad that they don't understand missing 2-3 days every couple of months.

But Mom and I are going to be able to deal with this better because of all the support and ideas we have gotten from all of you. We can't thank you enough.

God bless all of you.

Dakota Rose
Dream things that never were and say, "Why not."

Junior Editor Linking Ring - Youth Forum
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Your GPA and SAT scores will be the deciding factors of which college you go to. So if that is really important to you, cut back on the magic. Most magic conventions aren't all that different from one another from year to year, so be selective about the ones you elect to go to. Try to schedule as many as possible over the summer months.

School is easier to go to now than later. Trust me, I know. This is your chance to squeeze every benefit from school that you can. You have many more years to squeeze magic. It doesn't have the same clock as school.

Use this time to firmly cement your academic abilities and try to take some business and marketing classes as soon as they are available. Accounting too.

You will be suprised how handy they become.

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Sounds like a great mom to me, although I couldn't be happier with the one I have.
I went to a public school for a couple years, but 'am currently in a private highschool. It is very rigerous. A couple of the students are actors, and when working on a film, they have a tutor (by law, that is necessary). You could try to get the schedual of all the possible due dates for homework essays reports... and dates of tests, before you leave. And, try to turn everything in, before you leave. It isn't easy. Above all, I suggest you talk to teachers, and cue them in on what is going on and try to work things out with them.

A magic trick for the judge?
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I understand that magic conventions are a big part of your personal and professional life. You certainly do learn a lot at these events. You are very fortunate to have a mother that is supportive. I have seen your act and seen it evolve and change as you are finding your niche. Yes, these experiences are good for you.

Let me give you something to think about as you are sorting through this. I am presuming that your intent is to become a professional magician one day and make this your career. Lets say that you continue doing what you are doing, accepting poorer grades and missing a good portion of curriculum. I'm also presuming that because of your chosen career path, you will have no plans to attend college after graduation and will be focusing on performing magic. So you graduate and do that for a few years. What happens if you get to this point and suddenly for some reason cannot perform magic anymore? What do you do then? You wouldn't have the skills to go out into the workforce and earn a decent living. You could to go back to college, but that costs money that may or may not be there. It will basically be a lot of time and effort that you will be spending just to catch up and get the skills necessary to earn a decent living.

I am not saying you should give up magic now.

Let me repeat that.

I am NOT saying you should give up magic now.

What I am saying is that your education is important and you should find a way to make both your magic AND education work for you. That way, you will always have something to fall back on.

I would recommend contacting Joshua Jay. He was a high school senior when I saw his lecture and it was absolutely amazing. He is in college now and still deals with this very issue. He may have some advice for you and your mom on how to cope with balancing school and magic.

I wish you the best of luck in everything you do.
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