2013 Convention Information and Procedures
The 26th Bay Area Convention 2013 promises to be an inspiring and practical homeschool Convention with many new and unique attractions. The Christian Homeschool Educators Association (CHEA) of California is excited to bring you this event. As always, our goal is to provide you with the resources you need to train your children and to give you a quality event, with an atmosphere that glorifies God. And, this year, our goal is to provide all of this at a more affordable price.
The following information should answer most of your questions. This information will help you navigate the wealth of data related to the operation and benefits associated with the Convention. Some aspects of the event have pre-requisites associated with registering. So please read this first!
First floor hallways between the Convention Center and the Hyatt Regency Hotel are often congested with attendees from other events. Did you know you could avoid this by using the second floor bridge? This bridge is accessed from the Hyatt Regency second floor mezzanine or the Convention Center’s second floor (use the escalator in the main lobby). Turn left at the top, keeping to the left hallway—going through the right hallway leads to the parking structure).
Additional family members on the registration form means adult students, or other adult members of the household who participate in the home education process. Individual families must register separately, even if they share a residence.
The wristband is your admission ticket to all areas of the Convention. Wristbands are for the sole use of the registered attendee and may not be transferred or shared.
Audio or video taping of the Convention sessions is prohibited. Workshop audio recordings of most Convention workshops* may be purchased at the on-site CHEA Audio Store. For easy ordering and reference you will find the CD order number on the workshop grid. Individual CDs are $6 each or buy five and get the sixth free. For the best deal, purchase a CD containing all available workshops (in MP3 format) for $79 or already loaded on an MP3 player for $99.
After the Convention, a limited quantity of CDs will be available through the CHEA office; and a few will be available for purchase as downloadable MP3s.
*For workshops not available at the CHEA’s Audio Store (see the workshop grid) contact the speaker for CD sales.
Be sure to visit the CHEA Bookstore in the Exhibit Hall where a wealth of resources is available. Purchasing at the Convention saves on shipping charges, and CHEA Members receive a 10% discount on all purchases at the CHEA Bookstore.
Please turn off all cell phones and pagers (or on silent/vibrate mode) so you will not disturb the speaker, other attendees, and session recording. If you receive a call during a session, please wait until the session is over or leave the room to answer the call. Parents with children attending the Children’s Convention must place their cell phone on vibrate so Children’s Convention staff can contact you if needed, but not interrupt other Convention activities.
If you wish to make any changes to your registration, please go to the Registration Assistance line.
The registration area is in Exhibit Hall Lobby D (north end of the Convention Center). Pick up your wristbands and other materials at the Pre-registration check-in counter. Pre-registration check-in opens at 3:30 p.m. on Friday.
All children (ages 4-11) need to be registered either for the Children’s Convention or as Child General Admission. A Child’s General Admission allows the child, accompanied by a parent, access to all public areas including the Exhibit Hall. A Child’s General Admission does not allow the child in the Children’s Convention; however, Children’s Convention registration allows the child in the Children’s Convention or to accompany the parent to all public areas as outlined above. Due to lack of seating, children are unable to attend workshop sessions, with the exception of Friday’s Free Intro Session, the Saturday morning keynote session, and all workshops held in the Theater. (Children’s registration is not required to attend Friday’s Free Intro session. All other areas require registration.) Children three and under may accompany their parents to all Convention activities; we request you keep children who are three or under in strollers.
If children are pre-registered for the Children’s Convention, they can be checked in Room 209/210 beginning at 7:45 a.m. on Saturday. No lunch is provided. Children will need to be picked up for lunch at noon and returned by 1:00 p.m. If you would like your child to have any snacks during the day, you will need to provide them. If your children are not pre-registered, visit Registration in Exhibit Hall Lobby D first.
All children attending the Children’s Convention must have a completed medical release form when checking in at the Children’s Convention. When registering online, all you need to do is check the medical release agreement box until you arrive at the event, at which time you will be asked for your signature. If you pre-register or register through any other means, you will need to provide a printed/signed medical release form before you can leave your children at the Children’s Convention.
Confirmations will be EMAILED approximately two weeks before the event. Be sure to add us to your email address book so you can receive it. (Wristbands, name tags, and programs will be picked up at the event.)
CHEA staff is available during all open Convention hours at the Registration booth and the Information Booth. We are also available by calling 408-748-7115 (Information booth) Friday, April 12 from noon to 8:00 p.m. and Saturday, April 13 from 7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
The presence of a particular speaker or exhibitor at this Convention does not constitute an endorsement of their product or service or imply that a comprehensive evaluation of specific products or services has been made by the CHEA. CHEA endeavors to present speakers and exhibitors whose materials are compatible with biblical principles, and our first choice is always to have Christians presenting these materials. However, if a speaker or exhibitor has material which would be beneficial to home educators, their participation is not restricted because they may not subscribe to specific religious doctrines.
If you have convictions about doing business with non-Christians or are uncertain about the content of specific material, please clarify this with the individual speaker or exhibitor before making your purchase or signing a contract for services.
The Exhibit Hall features displays from a variety of curriculum suppliers, resource companies, and cottage industries for browsing, making purchases, or placing orders. The Exhibit Hall is open to all registered attendees Friday 5-8 p.m. (note time change from previous years for Friday) and Saturday from 10:15 a.m.-7 p.m. See the schedule.
Shop Our Exhibitors: Our exhibitors are an important part of our Convention. While you may be able to find some of the items in our Exhibit Hall at a discount through catalogs or used curriculum resources, consider the added service value provided by our on-site exhibitors. They have gone to great effort and expense to set up materials for your examination and spend many hours providing knowledgeable information about their products. If you take their time and reap the benefits of their knowledge, please reward them with your purchase.
These special workshops provide a close-up look at specific products and companies. Exhibitors will highlight the benefits of their products and demonstrate how to use them most effectively. Be sure to check out the workshop descriptions. These workshops are available Friday and Saturday at the Hyatt Regency Hotel/Convention Center. See the Workshop Schedule or Exhibitors list to see the companies represented. Your Convention Program will also have a complete schedule. Please note that Exhibitor Workshops are not recorded.
There will be a special collection during the Saturday morning Keynote Session to support the work of Family Protection Ministries. We encourage you to come prepared to make a generous contribution to our partners in this vital work of protecting and defending parental rights. Checks should be made out to FPM (no credit cards).
Major injuries or illnesses should be reported to the Information booth immediately. Bandages, aspirin, and other over-the-counter medications are available in the gift shop located at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.
There will be no Exhibit Hall concession this year (we have been unable to meet their minimum sales requirements). It's possible concessions sponsored by the other events in the facilities may be available. Visit the Hyatt Regency restaurants or eat a sack lunch off-site. No outside food or drink is allowed in the Convention Center according to Convention Center policies. There are also several local restaurants within 10 minutes of the Convention Center. For local restaurant information, check the Information booth in the Exhibit Hall Lobby D.
Invite your inquiring friends and family to a free session, An Introduction to Home Education, Friday, April 12 from 6-7 p.m. Attendees of the free Introduction Session will also receive Friday night special passes to the Exhibit Hall.
Each registered family will receive access to a link with hundreds of dollars worth of free curriculum, discount coupons, and other resources. This “Gift Basket” link will be found in your convention program. A free Literature Bag will also be distributed to each attendee, a bag chock full of information about resources to help you in your home education endeavors.
Our anchor hotel is the beautiful Hyatt Regency Santa Clara connected to the Santa Clara Convention Center. Make your reservation and use the special Convention code on our website to check the current Convention rates. We recommend making your reservations early because this hotel sells out quickly, particularly rooms with two beds.
The opening Keynote session is Saturday morning from 8-10 a.m. featuring Hal and Melanie Young.
No unauthorized literature may be distributed in any area of the Convention. Only items pre-approved by CHEA may be displayed. If you are approached by a solicitor anywhere outside of the Exhibit Hall, please report it to the Information booth or to a CHEA Convention volunteer.
Items left in workshop sessions or in the Convention area may be turned in to or picked up at the Information booth until the close of the Convention Saturday evening. Items not claimed will be left with Convention Center Security.
Unfortunately, due to lack of space this year, we do not have a designated nursing mothers room. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
Parking is free at both the Convention Center and the Hyatt Regency Hotel.
By attending this event, you agree to allow your photo to be taken and printed in CHEA’s print or media materials.
All Silver, Gold, and Platinum Members should check-in at the Membership booth in the Convention Center Exhibit Hall Lobby D. Priority check-in begins at 3 p.m. on Friday. Premium Members are invited to attend an exclusive preview of the Exhibit Hall on Friday at 4 p.m.
Parents of preschoolers who have never attended a CHEA Convention are invited to attend the Bay Area Convention on Saturday free. This offer applies to parents whose oldest child is five years and under; it applies to both husband and wife. Registration is available only by calling the CHEA office (562-864-2432) and the deadline is 5 p.m. March 11, 2013. Children three or under may attend with the parents. Children four and older must be registered, either for the Children’s Convention or the Child General Admission (either option is $32 per child). Refer to Children in the Convention above for areas of the Convention where children can go.
If you prefer to mail in your pre-registration, you can print the registration form and mail it with your check or credit card number. Do not mail after March 11, 2013. One family per form; one check per family.
One Convention program, including the schedule and workshop descriptions, will be available for each pre-registered family. At-the-door registrants receive programs as available.
There are no refunds. Because we must contract for and pay for the space in advance, we cannot issue refunds.
The pre-registration deadline is March 11, 2013. Online pre-registration will be available until midnight (PDT) on that date (Please note: Daily savings time begins on Sunday, March 10. Also, the pre-registration deadline will NOT be extended this year.) At-the-door registration will be available onsite in the registration area located in Exhibit Hall Lobby D. At-the-door prices are slightly higher.
CHEA is unable to provide scholarships to attend the Convention. We recommend you contact your local homeschool group or church for assistance. There are a few opportunities to be an Area Volunteer at the Convention to receive complimentary registration; however, Area Volunteers generally work for most of the Convention hours. For further information, email volunteers4BayArea@cheaofca.org.
Your individual registration fee allows your spouse to attend without charge, but registration is required. Just check the appropriate box on your registration form and provide your spouse’s name. All other family members must pay the additional family member charge.
For information regarding CHEA Support Groups, Private School Satellite programs, and Support Network services, visit the Support Network booth located in the lobby.
Syllabus pages from participating speakers are posted on the CHEA website. Please download and print them at home and bring them with you to the Convention. No copies will be available onsite.
No medical release is needed for teens as may be indicated by the online pre-registration form; however, by checking the box, the system will let you continue.
Registering for the Teen Convention gives your young person four Teen Convention workshops on Saturday. We also encourage your teen to attend the Saturday morning Keynote session and visit the Exhibit Hall during their breaks.
Registered teens are welcome to attend General Convention workshops as well. Only teens registered for the Teen Convention are permitted in the teen workshops. CHEA will provide volunteer adult chaperones, however parents are responsible for their teen’s safety and behavior during the Convention. We recommend that parents and teens read over the Convention materials together, selecting workshops, and arranging meeting times and locations.
In consideration of all in attendance we request teens follow these basic guidelines:
- Wear modest, casual clothing.
- Remain seated during the sessions.
- Do not loiter outside the rooms during sessions.
- Be attentive to the speaker.
- Turn off cell phones.
- No texting during sessions.
To help your teens have the best experience:
- Review your program schedule with your teen so you can be found if needed.
- Have lunch together.
- Arrange to meet with your teen often during the day.
Teen's wristbands will be included and can be picked up with all other registration materials. There is no separate program for the teens.
Parents may attend the Teen Convention as space permits; priority seating is given to teens.
We recommend that you visit the Santa Clara Visitor's Bureau website, www.santaclara.org for detailed driving directions.
Prizes may include curriculum, resources, a CHEA Platinum Membership, restaurant gift certificates, hotel accommodations, and more. You must be present to win. Tickets will be awarded for: Registration (1); being pre-registered (1); being a CHEA Member (1) and having at least one child/teen registered (1), regardless of how many children/teens registered. Premium Members earn additional tickets: Silver (1), Gold (2), Platinum (3). You may collect a maximum of three tickets/chances to win, not including Premium Members’ additional tickets. Tickets will be distributed with your registration materials and must be deposited between 7:00 p.m. – 7:15 p.m. or as you enter the Ultimate Giveaway before it begins at 7:15 p.m. No more than two winning tickets per family.
An event of this size depends on the help of a team of volunteers. Volunteers are urgently needed to help with the Convention. Those who volunteer for one session or more will receive a CD voucher for each session worked. Please contact the volunteer coordinator Dena Bless by email at Volunteers4BayArea@cheaofca.org if you would be willing to join the team. You can also visit the Volunteer booth in the Convention Center Exhibit Hall Lobby D.
Because of safety and congestion problems created by the proliferation of wheeled items in the Convention facility, only small rolling suitcases will be permitted. Wagons, other four-wheel vehicles, rolling crates, or two-wheeled “shopping” carts will not be permitted. Wheeled units must be kept next to attendee when viewing curriculum or conversing with others.
A complete schedule and listing of sessions to date is available on the website and will be included in your Convention Program at the event. You should arrive early at each session and make alternate selections in case your first choice is full. Don’t forget audio recordings are available as well at CHEA’s Audio Store.