Homeschooling

Update, as of April 15, 2020

On Monday, April 6, the New York Board of Regents voted on a series of emergency regulation changes to help educators, students, and professionals cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. One of those changes was directed at the annual assessment requirement for homeschool parents.

The regents agreed to amend Section 100.10(h) and add the following:

(2-a) Notwithstanding paragraph (2) of this subdivision, an alternative form of evaluation consisting of a written narrative prepared by a person specified in subparagraph (iii) of paragraph (2) of this subdivision shall be permitted for all grades in the 2019-20 school year due to the state of emergency declared by the governor pursuant to an executive order(s) for the COVID-19 crisis.

This new paragraph allows homeschool parents to select the alternative written narrative evaluation for their child, regardless of grade level, for the annual assessment requirement.

While you can still use a standardized achievement test this year, no one is required to test this year. Even your child who is in high school can use the alternative written narrative evaluation for their assessment

Home instruction must be done in accordance with regulations established by the New York State Commissioner of Education (Commissioner's Regulations 100.10). These regulations were adopted to ensure that all children in our district receive instruction that is at least equivalent to that being offered to children of the same age and achievement level enrolled in district programs. Some important points to consider before beginning a home instruction program are:

  • Students instructed at home are not awarded a high school diploma. A high school diploma may only be awarded to a student enrolled in a registered secondary school who has completed all program requirements set by the Regents, the school or the district.
  • Home-instructed students are not eligible to participate in interscholastic sports. Section 135.4(c)(7) of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education, which governs interscholastic sports, directs that a participant in interscholastic sports must be enrolled in the school.
  • Districts are not required to loan textbooks to home instructed-students. A student instructed at home is not enrolled in a nonpublic school, therefore the district is not obligated to loan items that it is required by statute to provide to children attending nonpublic schools.
  • Students instructed at home may not participate in the instructional program of the school district. The Legislature has not authorized part-time attendance.
  • A district must offer a home-instructed student with disabilities the special education services recommended on the Individualized Education Program (IEP) by the Committee on Special Education.
  • Home-instructed students may not participate in intramural sports and other school-sponsored club activities.
  • State law does not require any specific credentials for the person(s) providing home instruction.
  • Enrollment in an online or virtual school does not obviate compliance with home instruction regulations. As such the parent must file all the required home instruction documents with the school district.

Contact information:
Jenniffer Thomas, Attendance Coordinator
Booth Educational Center
414 Davis Street
Elmira, NY 14901
Phone: (607) 735-3570
Fax: (607) 735-3559
E-mail: jenthomas@elmiracityschools.com