Home Education Alternative Program (Homeschooling)
Click here to view the Parent Checklist. Please send completed Home Education Plans to the Office of Student Support Services.
Chapter 76, Section 1 of Massachusetts Law provides a legal basis for parents to request permission to instruct their children at home.
To try to establish ground rules for shared responsibility between parents in the Plymouth Public Schools, the following regulation shall apply in judging an alternative for home education plans for approval or disapproval.
PROCEDURES FOR APPLICATION
Parents requesting permission to implement an Alternative Home Education Program of their child (children) shall request permission for conducting such a program by filing a formal letter with the Superintendent of Schools at least sixty (60) days prior to the program’s initiation. The School Committee will act upon the request within forty-five (45) calendar days of submission of the parent request.
The request to implement an Alternative Home Education Program shall be accompanied by a detailed educational program for each child to be taught at home. The program must include a description of the following:
1.0 Competency of teacher(s) to include academic background, experience, or any other factors which may assist the School Committee in judging the competency of the instructor.
2.0 A listing of the subject to be taught.
3.0 A time schedule indicating the number of minutes per day to be allocated to each subject area.
4.0 A calendar indicating the number of minutes per day during which instruction will be given.
5.0 A listing of the textbooks and/or teaching materials to be employed, and/or a listing of objectives to be achieved by each child if these objectives are not listed in the teaching materials.
6.0 Testing - Parents will also include as part of the child’s educational plan an outline describing the types of evaluative instruments and/or procedures to be utilized in periodically measuring the child’s academic growth.
7.0 During the period that the program for home teaching is being reviewed, the child will remain in public school attendance.
The parent must indicate in writing his/her willingness to allow the school system to have school system staff assess (periodically) the child’s mastery of skills/ competencies through the use of (either) a standardized (and/or criterion-referenced evaluation instrument) achievement test, preferably the achievement test used by the schools in the Spring prior to the school year for which permission is sought from the School Committee to place a child on a Home Education Alternative Program. The parent shall also be consulted relative to where the testing is to occur and what instrument is to be used. The results of the achievement tests will be reported to the Superintendent or the Superintendent’s designee, by the test administrator at the same time, or soon thereafter, as they are reported to the child’s parents.
In evaluating the proposed home education alternative plan, recommendations of the Superintendent of Schools and his/her designated administrators and teaching staff shall be considered of the highest importance.
Parent will indicate their willingness to permit the Superintendent of Schools or his/her designee to observe and evaluate instruction pursuant to Chapter 71, Section 1.
The Superintendent of Schools shall, on an annual basis, review the effectiveness of the Home Education Program. Included in the review will be an assessment of pupil growth and a recommendation for suggested changes. The Superintendent retains the discretion to require review more often annually if in his/her opinion the child is deprived of an education appropriate for his/her abilities. The annual review shall be the occasion for the parent or legal guardian to submit an updated program for the ensuing school year. The School Committee will act upon the updated review within forty-five (45) calendar days of the submission of the review.
PARTICIPATION IN ATHLETICS AND EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
A student being educated through an approved home education plan shall be allowed to participate in public school activities of an extra-curricular nature. Home-educated students participating in extra-curricular activities are subject to the same participation fees, state and local regulations, and district policies and procedures as enrolled students.
REFERENCES: Massachusetts Law, Chapter 76, Section 1
Perchembeles vs. Frizzle, Superior Court
Hampshire County, 1978
In Care and Protection of Charles & Others,
Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court,
New Life Baptist Church vs. Longmeadow,
U.S. District Court, July, 1987
Johnson v. Charles City Community Schools Bd. of Education (1985)
Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Rules and Regulations Governing Athletics