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New York

October 28, 2005

Excessive Demands on Homeschoolers

Home School Legal Defense Association members in the Keshequa Central School District recently received a form letter demanding that parents provide a list of specific topics to be studied, or a plan of instruction, along with a list of the textbooks or curriculum materials to be used in each subject.

With this letter each family received an “application” to teach their children at home and a “Home Instruction Worksheet.”

Attorney Thomas Schmidt contacted the Keshequa CSD on behalf of our member families residing in the district and informed the public school officials of New York law. Section 100.10 actually requires parents to submit one of the following on their Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP) form: a list of the syllabi, curriculum materials, or a plan of instruction.

Additionally, Schmidt pointed out that parents are not required to submit an “application” or get the school district’s approval before teaching their children at home. Instead, a parent must notify the school district of their intent to homeschool by July 1st or within 14 days from beginning their homeschool program.

While most of the information requested on the Home Instruction Worksheet will be provided over the course of the school year, this form was developed by the New York State Education Department for internal public school use. It is not uncommon for school officials to request that homeschooling parents fill out this form. However, it is not a requirement.

Whenever there is doubt about the documentation you are required to submit to the school district, please contact us for assistance.