Originally Sent: 7/29/2013

From the HSLDA e-lert service…
Home School Legal Defense Association

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Update: Relevant Homeschool Section in Omnibus Bill

Homeschooling in Ohio.

Corrected page references.

HSLDA staff attorney Mike Donnelly helps protect homeschool freedom in your community.

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

Last week we sent an update on two provisions passed by the Ohio Legislature that allow homeschool students to receive funding from Ohio’s post-secondary enrollment options (“PSEO”) program and to participate in extracurricular activities in their school districts.

That email included a link to the text of the bill, but the page numbers we listed did not correspond to the relevant sections in the actual online version of the bill. To see the new provisions affecting homeschoolers, you can view the PDF version of the bill online: The extracurricular access provisions can be found on pages 1129-1130 and the PSEO provisions can be found on page 1438 of the PDF link.

House Bill 59, the Omnibus Budget Bill, states that a student who is home educated and excused pursuant to the ORC 3321.04 (that is, in compliance with O.A.C. 3301-34—the homeschool regulation) “shall be afforded … the opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities offered at the district school to which the student otherwise would be assigned during that school year.”

Previously, Ohio did not have any laws specifically addressing the issue of a homeschool student’s participation in public school activities, leaving each district free to come up with their own policies. Under the new law, at a minimum, homeschoolers will have access to extracurricular activities at the public school that they would otherwise be assigned to. The Ohio High School Athletic Association has updated its policy. To learn more about equal access issues generally, please visit our issues library page.

New language was also added to the law making it possible for homeschoolers to fully participate in the PSEO program which pays for dual enrollment college courses at participating Ohio institutions of higher learning. Homeschooling families who wish to participate in the PSEO program must notify the Department of Education by April 1 of the year prior in which they plan to participate. The legislation allows the DOE to relax that deadline for homeschooled students who wish to participate for the 2013-2014 school year. To find out more about how to apply for PSEO program funding, visit the Ohio Department of Education website. This page has not yet been updated to reflect the new law.

HSLDA works with CHEO to protect your right to freely homeschool in Ohio. Both organizations were involved in the passage of HB 59, and we encourage our members and friends to support CHEO because of its valuable contributions to defending homeschooling freedom in Ohio. Please consider becoming a financial supporter of CHEO by visiting their website.

If you have questions about the homeschool laws in Ohio, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are here to serve you!

Very truly yours,

Michael P. Donnelly, Esq.
HSLDA Staff Attorney

P.S. We greatly value you and your support—it is a privilege to serve you. Thank you for all you do for freedom! If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you consider taking a moment today to join or recommend us? Your support enables us to defend individual families threatened by government officials and protect homeschooling freedom for all. Join now >>

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