Home School Programs and
Special Education Services
Parents decide to enroll their children in home school programs for a variety of reasons. Some feel their child needs the small, structured environment of home, some do not want their child exposed to the standardized requirements of a public school, some are wanting to avoid social situations or it could be that the child is involved in an activity that requires them to have an extremely flexible schedule.
If you believe your home-schooled child has a learning disorder, you have the right to seek an evaluation and services from your local public school district. The level of responsibility that the school district has for providing special education services to eligible home-schooled students depends on whether the IEP team determines that services should be provided.
Usually, an IEP team will decide not to provide services unless the child is enrolled full or part time within the public school district.
Just taking a single class like math or band can allow your child to receive services they might not be able to receive at home.
If you decide to have your child evaluated, you should contact your local public school district, state that your child is in a home school program and request an evaluation.
Once a home-schooled child is referred to special education, the local public school is required to complete the evaluation within 60 days.
The district will follow the process outlined in IDEA including:
Like all students, parents of a children in a home school program have the right to refuse to consent for the evaluation, revoke consent or refuse to make the child available for evaluation. If a home-schooled child is found to be eligible for special education services BUT those services would only be provided if the student enrolled in public school, the school district does not have to provide services to the child. If the evaluation determines that a child is eligible, the parent can consider enrolling them part time in the public school so they can receive services.
- Notifying the parent of the intent to evaluate and providing parents with their procedural safeguards.
- Obtaining written consent for evaluation, placement in special education and development of the IEP.
- Developing an appropriate IEP that measures the satisfactory educational process of the home-schooled child.
- Re-evaluating the child for special education eligibility every three years.