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Home School in Colorado
Home School Overview
Under Colorado Revised Statute, (§ 22-33-104.5, C.R.S.), home-based education is defined and provides guidelines for the public. While the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) cannot interpret state statute or advise on home school matters, CDE encourages review of the following information and resources.
- Home schooling is considered non-public education, and therefore is not accredited by the Colorado Department of Education or by a local school district. CDE is not able to receive letters of intent, or help with homeschool set-up or planning.
The parent/legal guardian who oversees a home school program is responsible for selecting books, supplies, tests, curriculum selection, and any costs associated. A student completing home school through a home school program is different than a student enrolled at an online school or a public school that allows a student to complete their education at home.
There are a variety of external organizations that provide support for homeschool families throughout the state. The link for these resources is listed towards the bottom of this page.
It is important that families, or family support, review and interpret homeschool statute and reach out to their chosen district with any further questions regarding homeschool matters, including (but not limited to) services for Special Populations, participation in sports or extracurricular activities, and requirements for attendance, assessments, or curriculum.
Getting Started with Home School
A letter of intent must be submitted 14 days before beginning the home school program to a Colorado school district of a family's choosing. The family does not submit the letter of intent to CDE. The letter of intent must include the name, age, place of residence, and number of attendance hours for each child that will be participating in the home school program. Should you begin your home school program during the school year, you may prorate the 172 days of instruction requirement against the attendance already completed. Written notification must be re-submitted to a Colorado school district each year.
Home School Requirements
Colorado law states that home school programs must include, but are not limited to, the subjects of communication skills of reading, writing, and speaking, mathematics, history, civics, literature, science, and regular courses of instruction in the constitution of the United States. Home school programs must have no less than 172 days of instruction, averaging 4 contact hours per day. The selection of curriculum is at the discretion of the parent who is overseeing the home schooling program.
Records for each child participating in a home school program must be kept on a permanent basis by the parent who is overseeing the home school program.
- The records must include, but are not limited to, attendance, test and evaluation results, and immunization records as required by C.R.S sections 25-4-901, 25-4-902, and 25-4-903.
- The records must be produced and provided to the school district that received the written notification, not the state of Colorado, at the school district’s request.
- Records verification requests (including transcripts and diplomas) must to go the parent who oversees the homeschool program, or to the district the family filed the letter of intent with.
- CDE does not receive or house any records related to homeschool.
Students that are participating in a home school program must have academic progress evaluated in grades 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11. CDE is not able to advise on the selection of assessments and there is not a list of allowable assessments. Please contact the school district with which your letter of intent is filed for further questions.
- Students are not required to take the state standardized test, but can take a nationally standardized achievement test or a qualified person, as described in C.R.S. 22-33-104.5(3)(f), can be selected by the parent to evaluate the student’s academic progress.
- According to the home school law, the assessments that home school students must take are either a nationally standardized achievement test or an evaluation of academic progress administered by a qualified person that the parent selects.
- A qualified person is someone who has a CO teacher license, is a teacher in an independent or parochial school, is a licensed psychologist, or has a master’s degree in education.
- The parent of the home school program works with the qualified person to determine what the evaluation of academic progress would be. Local home school support groups may also have more information on what those evaluations of academic progress could be.
- The test or evaluation results, whichever is appropriate, shall be submitted to the school district that received the letter of intent.
Additional Home School Resources
The links below include a copy of Colorado Home School Law, how to get started home schooling your student, and a resources link to home school organizations that provide information on networking, support groups, curricula, and testing.
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