The Massachusetts General Law requires the School Committee to determine that a home schooling program meet with the minimum standards established for public schools in the Commonwealth prior to approving such a program.
When a parent/guardian of a student below the age of 16 wants to establish a home-based educational program for his/her child(ren), the following procedures shall be followed in accordance with the law:
Prior to removing the child(ren) from public school:
The parent/guardian must submit written notification of establishment of the home-based program to the appropriate administrator fourteen (14) days before the program is established, and resubmit notification on an annual basis as long as the child(ren) are being educated in a home-based environment.
The parent/guardian must certify in writing, on a form provided by the district, the name, age, place of residence, and number of hours of attendance of each child in the program.
The superintendent or his/her designee shall give the notice to produce records required by law if there is probable cause to believe the program is not in compliance with the law. Factors to be considered by the superintendent or his/her designee in deciding whether or not to approve a home education proposal may be:
1. The proposed curriculum and the number of hours of instruction in each of the proposed subjects.
2. The competency of the parents to teach the child(ren).
3. The textbooks, workbooks and other instructional aids to be used by the child(ren) and the lesson plans and teaching manuals to be used by the parents.
4. Periodic standardized testing of the children to ensure educational progress and the attainment of minimum standards.
A student being educated in a home-based program within the district may have access to public school activities of either curricular or extracurricular nature upon approval of the superintendent or his/her designee.**
SOURCE: MASC; Holyoke School District
LEGAL REFS: M.G.L. 69:1D; 76:1, Care and Protection of Charles – MASS. Supreme Judicial Court 399. Mass. 324 (1987)
** Request for enrollment to the Lower Pioneer Valley Educational Collaborative or any other vocational programs will not be approved.
First Reading: May 12, 2015 (Policy Subcommittee)
Revisions read & approved: July 14, 2015 (School Committee)