Across the States
Levittown Adds to Regulations
Homeschooling parents in New York state have enough paperwork required without school districts inventing new hoops to jump through. This past fall, Home School Legal Defense Association member families in the Levittown School District submitted their Individualized Home Instruction Plans (IHIPs) as required, but received a letter from local school officials informing them that the IHIPs were deficient. To complete the IHIPs, officials insisted that parents attest to a statement that they would be meeting the compulsory educational requirements in New York “through full-time home study or full-time study at a degree-granting institution.”
However, Levittown’s new requirement is not found anywhere in the state’s homeschool regulations. HSLDA Staff Attorney Thomas Schmidt wrote to Levittown on behalf of our member families, quoting the entire IHIP section from the regulations and advising the district that it was adding to the regulations.
The only situation in which homeschooling parents are required to make any sort of statement is when their child will be meeting the compulsory education requirements through full-time study (at least 12 credit hours) at a college. No statement is required when a child is taking less than a full course load or is not in college.
Schmidt informed the district that it had no legal authority to require all parents to make the statement it had demanded. Since our member families had submitted all the information that is required for IHIPs, the district was obligated to acknowledge the IHIPs as being in compliance with state law.
After receiving our letter, the Levittown School District promptly notified the family that their IHIP was in compliance.
— by Thomas J. Schmidt
* See “A Plethora of Forms.”