April 28, 2005
Testing of Homeschool Students

At least one school district in Tennessee is still attempting to require homeschool students to take certain end-of-course tests administered to public school students each spring. According to a memorandum to parents dated March 1, 2005, from the Home School Office of Knox County High Schools, such tests are mandated by state law. Specifically, this memorandum stated that high school students must take tests in the areas of Math Foundations II, Algebra I, Biology I, English I, English II, Physical Science, and U.S. History if they are enrolled in these courses.

It is Home School Legal Defense Association's opinion based upon the language of the homeschool statute, the legislative history, and constitutional considerations that homeschool students do not have to take the end-of-course tests described in the memorandum. The homeschool statute requires that tests administered to homeschool students be standardized achievement tests. None of the proposed end-of-course tests is a standardized achievement test.

To date, public school officials have not attempted to force administration of the end-of-course tests on any HSLDA member family. Any family encountering difficulties with school officials over administration of these tests should contact us immediately for assistance.