**NEW FOR 2020-2021**
LAW CHANGE – (From HSLDA) Children must attend school or comply with the homeschool laws between the ages of 8 and 17 years. At the start of the 2020-2021 school year, those ages will be from between 6 and 18 years, with students who graduate being exempt.
Soooo….if your child is 6 or 7 years old or will turn 6 before the next school year, you must now add him/her to your affidavit and yes, include the child in next year’s evaluation.
(From Home Education and Private Tutoring Guide published by the PA Dept of Education) If a child has never been enrolled in any legal educational option (see the Educational Options section), an affidavit must be submitted by the student’s 6th birthday. However, school districts have the option of allowing the affidavit to be submitted at the beginning of the next school year, if the child’s birthday is after the first two weeks of school.
ANNUAL TIMELINE IN PA HOMESCHOOLING
AUGUST 1 – For returning homeschoolers, the affidavit and objectives due at the school district administration office
(First time homeschoolers submit affidavit and objectives at the time of decision to homeschool)
Askpauline.com is a wonderful resource filled with advice and valuable forms to help you on your way!
JUNE 30 – Letters of evaluation due to school district
That’s it! 🙂
Throughout the year you will need to accumulate 180 days of learning, field trips, sick days, snow days, lazy days, busy days and every kind of day in between. General guidelines about what your child needs to learn each year can be found on the best website for determining the final answer on homeschooling in PA: Pennsylvania Department of Education – Overview of Homeschooling. Familiarize yourself with the law. Read over it every year. It is your guide, above and beyond what your school district may say:
***STANDARDIZED TESTING*** The Pennsylvania School Code, 24 P.S. §13-1327.1(e)(1) states that the portfolio for home education students in grades 3, 5 and 8 must include the results of the statewide tests for reading/language arts and mathematics or nationally normed standardized achievement tests. This means that your children are permitted to take the Keystones or PSSAs, but they are not required to take those tests. Very, very few families use that option. Most families use the second option: Nationally normed standardized achievement tests. TEST RESULTS ARE NOT HANDED IN TO THE SCHOOL DISTRICT. The results stay in the portfolio – at home. The evaluator’s letter is sufficient evidence of testing.
The PA Department of Education has approved the following nationally normed standardized tests for use by home education programs if they choose not to take the statewide (PSSA) test:
- California Achievement Test
- Comprehensive Testing Program (CTPIV)
- Iowa Test of Basic Skills
- Metropolitan Achievement Test
- Peabody Achievement Individual Test – Revised Version
- Stanford Achievement Test
- Terra Nova
- Woodcock-Johnson Revised Tests of Achievement III
- Woodcock-Johnson IV
- Wechsler Individual Achievement Test III (WIAT-III)
For help in deciphering the law and interpreting how to comply with testing, portfolios, and evaluations, read my updated letter: 2015 Updated Testing and Evaluating Intro and with implications of the New PA Homeschool Law! 🙂