Homeschool Education Process

                                                         Needham Public Schools
                                                    Homeschool Education Process
                                                          For Parents/Guardians

In Massachusetts there is no status specifically governing homeschooling. Instead, the attendance statute applies.  Students between the minimum age of 6 and maximum age of 16 are required to attend school unless otherwise instructed in a manner approved by the school committee.  The school committee recognizes the rights of parents/guardians to provide home school programs for their child(ren) as an alternative to attending the Needham Public Schools.  It is important to note that home school programs do not necessarily require instruction to be provided at home, but rather the instruction is guided by the parent/guardian.

A student being educated through a homeschool education program may be granted access to public school activities of curricular, co-curricular and/or extracurricular nature if the class or activity is developmentally appropriate, scheduling is practical and space is available, established criteria for participation in the class or activity have been met by the student, and if participation has the prior approval of the school Principal and Superintendent.

Certain factors apply when establishing a homeschool program and are articulated in the School Committee Policy on Homeschool Education. The process below incorporates requirements that both parents/guardians and school officials must follow in establishing and implementing a homeschool education program.

The district has a designated Home School Liaison assigned to each school who can assist parents/guardians with the Home School Education process.

Parents/guardians must complete the Intent to Pursue Home School Education Form and submit to the Home School Liaison at least 14 school days before the home school program is established.  If the process is initiated during the school year, the student must remain in school until the school district approves the home school education plan.  

Factors to be considered in the approval of the Homeschool Education Plan include:

  • Name, age, place or residence, and
  • Proposed curriculum of instruction addressing the factors outlined below for each child in the program:
  • The proposed curriculum and the number of hours of instruction in each of the proposed subjects
  • The competency of the people educating the children
  • The textbooks, workbooks, and/or programs to be used
  • Periodic evidence of achievement to ensure educational progress and the attainment of minimum standards.
For students who are eligible for special education and receive an Individual Education Program (IEP):
  • The Homeschool Education Plan should address the child's individual educational needs.
  • Parents/guardians should engage with their Special Education Administrator to determine how special education services with be accessed.
  • The Assistant Superintendent for Student Support Services should be notified to discuss the homeschool plan and process for proportionate share special education services for students privately enrolled by their parents/guardians.  (AdminAdvisorySPED: PropShare)
The Homeschool Liaison will review the homeschool education plan according to school committee policy and will notify parents/guardians in writing of either the approval of the plan or need for additional information.

Parents/guardians must submit assessment of educational progress at least once per year and are encouraged to do so twice a year.  Midyear progress due January/February.  End of year progress due June.

Parents/guardians must submit an Intent to Pursue Home School Education Form each school year until their child turns 16 years old.

Students receiving a home school program will not receive a diploma through the Needham Public Schools.

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