Homeschool Age Requirements: Students between the age of 6 (by Dec 2) and under 18 are required to attend school in California.
Required Homeschool subjects: English, mathematics, social sciences, science, fine arts, health, physical education.
Homeschool Background: In California, parents are able to choose from four different homeschool options.
Option 1: The individual home school could qualify as a private school by filing an annual private school affidavit:
a. The instructors must be capable of teaching;
b. The instruction must be in English;
c. The instruction must be in the several branches of study required in public schools;
d. Attendance must be kept in a register; and
e. A private school affidavit must be filed with the Superintendent of Public Instruction between Oct. 1 and Oct. 15 of each school year.
Option 2. Homeschoolers could enroll in a private school satellite program and "homeschool” through that private school. The private school “satellite school program” (PSP) must comply with the first option above. Many homeschool families have organized these private PSPs which enroll anywhere from two to several hundred families.
Option 3. The home school could have instruction provided by a certified private tutor
Option 4. The child could be enrolled in an independent study program at home, using the public school curriculum. Under this option, the child is considered a public school student and has to abide by the rules and policy of the public school.
Teacher Qualifications: There are no teacher qualifications if the home school registers as a private school or enrolls in a private school satellite program. Certification is necessary only if the home school parent chooses to qualify as a private tutor.
Standardized Testing Requirements: There are no required tests for homeschool students.
California statutes do not explicitly authorize home schooling. Whether a home schooled child is attending a private school, and therefore is exempt from public school attendance, is a decision made by local school districts and law enforcement authorities. Many public schools offer independent study or home-based study as an option. California has a growing number of charter schools which offer different types of schooling in non-traditional settings. To learn what options your local schools offer, start by asking the public school district in which you live what programs allow schooling at home. You might also contact other school districts near yours or your county office of education. If your district or county does not offer a program that a neighboring district or county offers, you may be able to obtain an inter-district transfer that allows your child to be registered in another district’s program.
A parent offering or providing private school instruction and who meets the requirements of EC Section 33190 may file an Affidavit in the manner described. However, filing such an Affidavit with the California Department of Education does not constitute any opinion by the Department as to whether a student enrolled in that school is exempt from public school attendance. Below is the EC Section 33190 explanation:
Every person, firm, association, partnership, or corporation offering or conducting private school instruction on the elementary or high school level shall between the first and 15th day of October of each year, commencing on October 1, 1967, file with the Superintendent of Public Instruction an affidavit or statement, under penalty of perjury, by the owner or other head setting forth the following information for the current year.
(a) All names, whether real or fictitious, of the person, firm, association, partnership, or corporation under which it has done and is doing business.
(b) The address, including city and street, of every place of doing business of the person, firm, association, partnership, or corporation within the State of California.
(c) The address, including city and street, of the location of the records of the person, firm, association, partnership, or corporation, and the name and address, including city and street, of the custodian of such records.
(d) The names and addresses, including city and street, of the directors, if any, and principal officers of the person, firm, association, partnership, or corporation.
(e) The school enrollment, by grades, number of teachers, coeducational or enrollment limited to boys or girls and boarding facilities.
(f) That the following records are maintained at the address stated, and are true and accurate:
(1) The records required to be kept by section 48222.
(2) The courses of study offered by the institution.
(3) The names and addresses, including city and street, of its faculty, together with a record of the educational qualifications of each.
(g) Criminal record summary information has been obtained pursuant to section 44237. Whenever two or more private schools are under the effective control or supervision of a single administrative unit, such administrative unit may comply with the provisions of this section on behalf of each of the schools under its control or supervision by submitting one report.
California Homeschool Curriculum
Parents who are privately educating or schooling their children at home must select and provide all curriculum, instruction, and materials. Homeschooling support and education curriculum can be found online, since Calfiornia does not offer a homeschool networking group.
California Homeschool Students Transfer to Public School
California Public school districts establish their own policies regarding the placement of new enrollees. Students from other schools, states and even countries must be placed in public schools in a fashion that is consistent with school district policy and practice.
California Homeschool Diploma
Parents schooling at home and exploring a student’s next steps after high school might check with specific colleges, technical schools and prospective employers to learn about student admission or eligibility. Because there is no law or regulation that establishes graduation or diploma requirements for California private schools, any such requirements set for an individual home school may not be generally recognized. Understanding how post-secondary institutions and prospective employers recognize course work completed in alternative education settings is important for parents/guardians considering home school for their high school student.
Alternative diploma equivalencies for students not attending public school include the General Education Development (GED) Test and the California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE).