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Home Education Program

24 P.S. §13-1327.1

Date of Issue: September 1, 1997
Date of Review: February 1, 2017, January 29, 2015, March 15, 2009, June 30, 2004

Purpose

Section 1327.1 of the Pennsylvania School Code provides for a home education program designed to permit a parent, guardian or legal custodian ("supervisor") who has a high school diploma or its equivalent to conduct a home education program for his or her child or children. This BEC provides a listing of the requirements for the supervisor to establish a home education program, a list of acceptable tests to fulfill the law’s requirements, and sample affidavit form for use by the supervisor.

Procedures

Prior to the commencement of a home education program and annually thereafter between July 1 and Aug 1, the supervisor must submit a notarized affidavit to the Superintendent of the school district in accordance with Section 1327.1(b)(1) and 1327(d). Attached to this BEC are sample affidavits that may be used by the supervisor of a home education program. These samples are not exclusive and the use of other forms also is permissible as long as all required information is provided.

In addition to the notarized affidavit, the parent, guardian or legal custodian must attach:

  • an outline of proposed education objectives by subject area,
  • evidence (records or a letter from the physician) that the child or children have been immunized as required by School Code Sec. 1303(a) unless a physician certifies the child has a medical contraindication to immunization and
  • evidence (records or a letter from the physician) that the child or children have received medical services required for students of the child’s or children’s age or grade level in Article XIV, or religious exemption for these two requirements.

Regulation found in 22 Pa. Code §11.31a states that school district approval is not required to commence a home education program when all necessary paperwork has been filed.

School districts must allow students who are in a home education program in their school district to participate in activities under 24 P.S. §5-511 such as, but not limited to, clubs, musical ensembles, athletics and theatrical productions.

We strongly encourage school districts to provide supervisors with current planned courses, texts and other curriculum materials immediately following a supervisor's request for these materials.

It is the Department's view that friendly compliance with the home education law is in the best interest of children and their education. For example, school districts can extend to supervisors of home education programs the opportunity to have home educated children participate in the district's health program, since these students must receive the same health tests as public school students. School districts may allow home educated students to participate in curricular courses and count that instructional time towards subsidy. We encourage school districts to establish policy and procedures for home education, including procedures addressing enrollment of students from home education programs.

Tests

The Pennsylvania School Code, 24 P.S. §13-1327.1(e)(1) states that the portfolio for home education students in grades 3, 5 and 8 must include the results of the statewide tests for reading/language arts and mathematics or nationally normed standardized achievements tests. If the supervisor of the home education program requests that the student(s) take the statewide tests administered in these grades, the school district must allow the student to take the test at the school building the home education student normally would attend or other accommodations agreed to by the school district and the parent. The Department has approved the following nationally normed standardized tests for use by home education programs if they choose not to take the statewide tests:

  1. California Achievement Test
  2. Comprehensive Testing Program (CTPIV)
  3. Iowa Test of Basic Skills
  4. Measures of Academic Progress (MAP)
  5. Metropolitan Achievement Test
  6. Peabody Achievement Individual Test – Revised Version
  7. Stanford Achievement Test
  8. Terra Nova
  9. Woodcock-Johnson Revised Tests of Achievement III
  10. Woodcock-Johnson IV
  11. Wechsler Individual Achievement Test III (WIAT-III)

Policy

School districts are encouraged to establish written policies on home education, including procedures for submitting the affidavits, PSSA test taking, enrollment procedures for home education students, and participation in curricular and extra-curricular activities.

Information about home education in Pennsylvania, including the Pennsylvania law on home education and related statutes and regulations, and a list of home education organizations serving Pennsylvania families, is available on our Home Education and Private Tutoring webpage.

References

Purdon's Statutes

24 P.S. §1-102. Definitions.
24 P.S. §1-111. Criminal History of Employes and Prospective Employes; Conviction of Certain Offenses.
24 P.S. §5-511. School Athletics, Publications, and Organizations.
24 P.S. §13-1303(a). Immunization Required; Penalty.
24 P.S. §13-1304. Admission of Beginners.
24 P.S. §13-1326. Definitions.
24 P.S. §13-1327. Compulsory School Attendance.
24 P.S. §13-1327.1. Home Education Program.
24 P.S. Article XIV. School Health Services.

State Board of Education Regulations

22 Pa. Code §11.31a. Students not enrolled in public schools due to participation in a home education program.
22 Pa. Code § 11.33 Dual enrollment students enrolled part-time in the public schools
22 Pa. Code §11.41. School district policies and rules.

Attachments

Elementary – School Age Student Sample Affidavit Grades K-6 (PDF)
Secondary - School Age Student Sample Affidavit Grades 7-12 (PDF)

Bureau/Office Contact

School Services Office
Pennsylvania Department of Education
333 Market Street
Harrisburg, PA 17126-0333
Email questions: RA-home-education@pa.gov