If you are homeschooling or considering home school as an option in the state of Ohio, there are several pieces of information that you should know before you begin and as you go through your home school education.
Homeschooling is legally permitted in all fifty states, but laws and regulations vary from state to state. In Ohio, homeschooling is regulated by the Ohio Administrative Code (OAC), Chapter 3301-34 which legally excuses children from compulsory attendance.
The first step is to provide an annual notification to homeschool to the appropriate superintendent. The notification must be in writing and include the following information:
• School year for which notification is made;
• Name of parent, address, and telephone number (telephone number optional);
• Name, address and telephone number (telephone number optional) of person(s) who will be teaching the child the subjects set forth in paragraph (a)(5) of this rule, if other than the parent;
• Full name and birth date of child to be educated at home;
• Assurance that home education will include the following, except that home education shall not be required to include any concept, topic or practice that is in conflict with the sincerely held religious beliefs of the parent:
(a) language, reading, spelling and writing
(b) geography, history of the United States and Ohio; and national, state and local government;
(f) physical education;
(g) fine arts, including music; and
(h) first aid, safety, and fire prevention
• Brief outline of the intended curriculum for the current year. Such outline is for informational purposes only.
• List of textbooks, correspondence courses, commercial curricula, or other basic teaching materials that the parent intends under the direction of a person holding a baccalaureate degree from a recognized college until the child’s or children’s test results demonstrate reasonable proficiency or until the home teacher obtains a high school diploma or the certificate of high school equivalence.
• Assurance that the child will be provided a minimum of nine hundred hours of home education each school year.
• Assurance that the home teacher has one of the following qualifications:
(a) A high school diploma; or
(b) The certificate of high school equivalence; or
(c) Standardized test scores that demonstrate high school equivalence; or
(d) Other equivalent credential found appropriate by the superintendent; or
(e) Lacking the above, the home teacher must work under the direction of a person holding a baccalaureate degree from a recognized college until the child’s or children’s test results demonstrate reasonable proficiency or until the home teacher obtains a high school diploma or the certificate of high school equivalence.
• The parent(s) shall affirm the information supplied with his or her signature prior to providing it to the superintendent.
Also, an academic assessment report of the child must be sent to the superintendent annually. This report can be the results of a nationally standardized test or it can be a written narrative indicating that a portfolio of the child’s work has been reviewed by a certified teacher. Keep in mind that the superintendent does reserve the right to intervene if the results of the standardized testing are not as expected. Usually, a plan for remediation is developed and if adequate progress is not made during that time, the superintendent may revoke the excuse from attendance.