In Alabama, as said by the law, all children between the ages of 7 and 16 are required to attend a public, private, or church school. Children are also allowed to be instructed by a private tutor who has been certified by the State of Alabama, for the entire length of the school term in every scholastic subject. This is laid bare in Alabama’s compulsory attendance law.
Notification of Intent to Homeschool in Alabama
When a child reaches the minimum age of 7, parents must present their notification to the district superintendent of the intent to homeschool, whether this is in a private or church school, or by a certified tutor. If your child is enrolled in public school, parents or guardians must submit a letter of withdrawal, which can be done at any time during the year, whether during the school year or the summer.
Learn more about Homeschooling in Alabama in this short video below:
However, if the child in question has never been enrolled in public school, this notification of intent and withdrawal from public school is not required. However, parents must file an annual attendance report for each child, each year, and within 5 days of the start of public school in any given district.
Qualifications Required to Homeschool in Alabama
If you as a parent, or anybody else wished to homeschool their child in Alabama, the instructor or tutor must be an Alabama state-certified teacher. The teacher must be able to teach in English and teach all subjects as mandated by the state.
All prospective teachers in Alabama must hold at least a bachelor’s degree and complete an approved educator preparation program to become certified to teach. Usually, an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.5 is required. Any person with a criminal record involving felonies will not be able to receive qualifications to become an Alabama-certified teacher.
Number of Days/Hours of Instruction Required for Homeschoolers in Alabama
In this state, a student must be taught for at least 3 hours per day, for a minimum of 140 calendar days throughout the year. These 3 hours must be taught between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. during the day. In order to complete homeschooling, these 3 hours of education must be met for 140 days per year, and must be upheld until the maximum student age of 16.
What Subjects Need to be Covered in Home Education In Alabama?
As mentioned before, all students in Alabama enrolled in homeschooling through a private tutor, private school, or church school must study all Alabama state-mandated courses in order to receive a high school diploma or equivalent. This includes 4 English credits, 4 math credits, 4 science credits, 3 social studies credits, 3 credits in world languages, fine arts, and technical, 1 career preparation credit, 1.5 health and physical education credits, and 2.5 credits in additional courses which can be selected from a list of optional courses.
What are the Recordkeeping Requirements for Homeschoolers in Alabama?
When a student in Alabama engages in homeschooling, the private tutor is required to submit accurate and up-to-date records to the county or city superintendent. This record must include information such as the name of the student and the number of students under the tutor’s tutelage, the tutoring schedule, and the subjects taught. This record must then also include the register of work completed by the student, the daily hours of instruction, attendance, and absences.
These records need to include attendance records, information on the textbooks and workbooks the student used, samples of the student’s schoolwork, correspondence with school officials, and portfolios and test results.
Is Part-time Enrollment Permitted in Alabama?
If a student requires a form of special education in Alabama which the private tutor is not in a position to provide, a resident of Alabama may enroll in part-time classes in public schooling. Unless there are extenuating circumstances, the student must be within the district of the public school which he or she wishes to be part-time enrolled in.
Are Homeschoolers Permitted to Participate in Extracurricular Activities in Alabama?
Technically speaking, Alabama law allows homeschoolers to attend and participate in public school extracurricular activities as mandated by the state. This includes events such as sports, as well as school-sanctioned educational field trips. However, this rule does not require public schools to accept homeschool students.
Homeschooled students must be enrolled by the 20th day of a semester in order to be eligible to play sports during the school year, but this is still somewhat unclear.
To receive more information about the homeschooling laws in the State of Alabama, you may want to visit the Christian Home Education Fellowship of Alabama website.