From the HSLDA E-lert Service:


8/30/2005 3:54:35 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
California--Letter from the California Department of Education

From the HSLDA E-lert Service...

California--Letter from the California Department of Education

Dear HSLDA members,

Some private homeschools in California have received a memorandum from
the California Department of Education dated August 9, 2005. The
memorandum is addressed to Nonpublic Schools, Special Education
Directors, and Districts, from the Office of Nonpublic Schools and
Agencies, Special Education Division.

The purpose of the memorandum is to announce that on-site reviews of
private schools will be scheduled in the future. The memorandum also
lists three sites in California for informational meetings to prepare
private school administrators for these on-site reviews.

What has caused concern for our members and what is lacking in the
memorandum is an explanation of which private schools are subject to
the on-site visit from the Special Education Division of the Office of
Nonpublic Schools.

In order for nonpublic, nonsectarian schools to be subject to on-site
visits, the school must have filled out an application with a public
school superintendent seeking certification as a private school
providing special education services for pupils. Education Code
sec.56365 states that services provided by nonpublic, nonsectarian
schools may be available if certain conditions are met. The school has
to provide an application for certification and receive certification
from the local school district, and then enter into a contract with
the district special education local plan area and the county office
of education to provide the appropriate special education facilities
and instruction.

This can only happen if no appropriate public education program is
available to the student in the area. Pupils enrolled in these private
school programs shall be deemed enrolled in a public school for
purposes of administering the program.

Very few private schools in California administer special education
programs pursuant to these code sections. To the best of our
knowledge, no private homeschools (i.e., private schools based in a
home) have ever been classified as nonpublic schools. If you receive a
memorandum concerning nonpublic schools, you should ignore it, unless
you are specifically contracted with local public education officials
to provide these special education programs. Should you have any
further questions, please do not hesitate to contact our office.


J. Michael Smith
HSLDA President

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But usually there is a prevailing wind. HSLDA watches the gusts
and monitors the prevailing trends of change in the legal climate
of home education. So no matter which way the wind is blowing,
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