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New York

September 14, 2006

NYC Contacts All Homeschoolers

While many families were thinking about their new school year, the New York City Department of Education (NYC DOE) sent a letter informing them of major changes. The letter stated that the NYC DOE was working to reorganize the way that parents report their homeschool programs within the City. In the past, homeschool families have submitted their documentation to their local Regional Learning Support Center.

After hearing rumors that changes were in the works, HSLDA contacted the Director of the Office of Attendance Ms. Lilian Garelick to find out what the NYC DOE’s intent was. Ms. Garelick has confirmed that the Office of Attendance is in the process of requesting all of the homeschool documentation for families within New York City.

HSLDA has raised several concerns to Ms. Garelick regarding this reorganization.

These concerns include the potential loss of homeschool paperwork by the Region and/or new central office. In the past, some innocent homeschool families have been threatened with educational neglect in NYC when the regional office lost their paperwork.

Another concern is timing of the transition. While most families have already submitted their Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP) form, others have not. Families in a few of the regions had not even received a homeschool packet with an IHIP form or the regulations by early September.

Ms. Garelick has assured us that she and her staff will do all that they can to minimize these potential problems. Ms. Garelick has indicated her willingness to have HSLDA contact her personally whenever there is a problem. We will continue to closely monitor this situation to ensure that each of our member families, and others homeschooling in New York City, are not threatened or prevented from homeschooling their children.