Feature Family

Meet the Sappington Family

Ryan and Bethany Sappington have three incredible children: Thorin, 7, Adawyn, 2, and Arden, 6 months. This time of year when the leaves are changing and the air is getting crisper, you can find them harvesting apples and making homemade apple cider together! The Sappington family also enjoys traveling, hiking, and roasting sausages over an open fire. 

Thorin, their oldest, has been quick to learn and very bright ever since he was young. The same can be said about his little sister, Adawyn, who is recognizing sight words at the age of two! When it was time to research schools, Bethany and Ryan knew they had to explore options beyond the traditional elementary school. During that exploration, they found Venture Upward on the Twin Falls School District website. They wanted to challenge Thorin beyond his age level, and the more they talked about it the more they realized that Venture would check all those boxes by allowing his education to be tailored.

After Thorin’s kindergarten year, Ryan and Bethany realized that they needed to tailor school even more to his ability. They had a conversation with Thorin’s teacher who knew their family and knew Thorin’s learning style very well. Their teacher was able to be a great advocate for them with the district in what would be best. The district agreed to let Thorin work at a level where he was challenged and excited about learning. Bethany said, “It was so helpful to have someone to work with us to assess him and see what level he was at and go on from there.”

With three young children and careers of their own, Bethany, a general surgeon, and Ryan, a CPA, have found that home education has given them the flexibility and the ability to spend more time as a family. Ryan, who Bethany describes as a “Super Daddy” is able to work from home, and Bethany’s job is great in that she can work evenings and weekends most of the time. They have a lot going on, and as Bethany put it, “Venture has been a good fit in the midst of the crazy.” Venture field trips have also been a highlight. Bethany asserts that the fact that the whole family can get together and build community with other families is “incredible.” Ryan also appreciates the fact that field trips are a family thing, and that, “ It is not just shipping your kids off together on a bus.” Venture community gives you people to live life with. 

Between the socialization with other kids, the teacher support, and the community connecting with families, Bethany remarked that Venture Upward is a “beautiful hybrid” of both homeschool and public school.

“It was so helpful to have someone to work with us to assess him and see what level he was at and go on from there.”

~Bethany Sappington