General Overview of the Homeschooling Laws in Louisiana
Children in Louisiana between the ages of 7 and 18 need to be educated, which can occur either in school or at their home. This is detailed under the state’s Home Study Law and the Private School Law. The rules in this state provide a lot of details around how this can be done and how to comply with the local laws.
A feature of homeschooling here is that the family needs to provide evidence that the child has been immunized for meningococcal disease. This has to be provided to the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education at 11 years of age unless an exemption is granted due to religious, medical, or personal reasons.
Notification of Intent to Homeschool in Louisiana
The Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education need to be advised of the intention to homeschool a child here.
This needs to be done within 15 days of starting the child’s education program at home.
You should bear in mind that the notification in question needs to be approved by the authorities.
It is also needing to be renewed each year by October 1 of the current school year or 12 months after the approval was initially granted if this is later.
The application also needs to be sent off with a certified copy of the child’s birth certificate.
Learn more about homeschooling in Louisiana in this video below:
The parent can choose to register as a board of elementary and secondary education or a non-public school. The latter is a slightly simpler option, although the former has benefits such as being able to compete in athletic activities.
Qualifications Required to Homeschool in Louisiana
Any parent can choose to homeschool their child in Louisiana, regardless of their qualifications and experience. This because there are no qualifications needed to do this, and no requirement for a teacher to take the classes. However, they need to be aware of the current official requirements in terms of curriculum and recordkeeping.
Number of Days/Hours of Instruction Required for Homeschoolers in Louisiana
In Louisiana, homeschooled children need to receive 180 days of education each year. This can be divided up in any way that suits the parent and their child throughout the year. There is no need to follow the school year, although this can be done if preferred.
What Subjects Need to be Covered in Home Education (and for how long) in Louisiana?
The quality of the curriculum that is used needs to be equal to that which is used in the state’s public schools. Therefore, the homeschooled student needs to learn the same as children of the same age and grade level in public schools. It is important to put some time into choosing a homeschool program and curriculum that meets the needs of the child, as well as being suitable under the terms of the state laws.
What are the Recordkeeping Requirements for Homeschoolers in Louisiana?
The fact that homeschooling approval needs to be granted each year increases the importance of recordkeeping for the parent who provides their child’s education. When the renewal application is made it needs to include details of the subjects that have been taught during the year. This includes information on the books and materials used, copies of the tests taken by the student, and copies of their work. Statements from third parties who have witnessed the student’s progress should also be enclosed as relevant evidence of their studies. There is an alternative approach that can be taken; this is to send details of:
- The student’s score on passing the Louisiana Educational Assessment Program
- Their score on the California Achievement Test, or another standardized test that has been approved by the state board of education
- Or a written statement that is provided by a teacher of the appropriate grade level in the state, who confirms that the child’s education and curriculum are both suitable for their grade level
Is Part-time Enrollment Permitted in Louisiana?
Part-time enrollment in Louisiana is a matter that is currently left to each school district to decide upon. There are no overall rules governing how this should be done in the state. If the parent wishes to explore this option, they should directly speak to the local authorities to find out their view on this matter.
Are Homeschoolers Permitted to Participate in Extracurricular Activities in Louisiana?
The question of extracurricular activity permission in Louisiana has been somewhat confusing in the past, with the rules changing over time due to different court rulings. At the time of this writing, high school students can only take part in sports activities in local schools if the governing authority allows it.
To receive more information about the homeschooling laws in the State of Louisiana, you may want to visit the Homeschool Louisiana website.