General overview of the homeschooling laws in Michigan
The main law that covers home schools in the state of Michigan can be found in the Michigan Compiled laws specifically MCL 380.1651. This law was enacted in the 1980s. As a general rule, the homeschool law of Michigan requires a legal guardian or a parent of a student from the age of six (6) to sixteen (16) to send the child to school.
There are, of course, exceptions to this general rule. This law gives the parents six (6) various options when it comes to school attendance. One of the options is the “nonpublic school” option which is in need of the state’s approval first. Another one is the homeschool option.
This alternative does not need state approval. An amendment was made in 2010 to increase the age of the compulsory school attendance from sixteen (16) years old to eighteen (18) years old for a child who just turned eleven (11) after December 1, 2009, or those who started the 6thgrade after 2009.
Notification of Intent to homeschool in Michigan
At the start of every school year, the parent or legal guardian is required to send the following to the superintendent of the local public school: 1) the name and age of every child enrolled in the homeschool; 2) the name or number of the school district and the township and county or city where the parents live; 3) the name and residence of the parents, and 4) the name and the age of each child enrolled in the school who do not have regular attendance.
The Department of Education of Michigan can request a written record of the student enrollment, curriculum followed, and the qualifications of the teachers in the nonpublic school. However, it is not necessary to submit the records unless the request is in writing as well.
Qualifications required to homeschool in Michigan
The only qualification required to become a homeschool teacher in the state of Michigan is that they have to either be the parents or legal guardian of the students being homeschooled. Teacher certification is not necessary.
However, the teachers reporting to the Department of Education of the state must at least be a bachelor’s degree holder to be approved. The only exception to this, as discussed in the case of People v Dejonge, is a sincere claim that teacher certification is not in consonance with their religious beliefs.
Number of days/hours of instruction required for homeschoolers in Michigan
There is no specific requirement in the number of hours of instruction or how often the subjects must be taught. The only recommendation is that each of the necessary and required subjects has to be taught every year at the age-appropriate level during the elementary and middle school years. For the high school level, it is recommended to be taught at least once.
What subjects need to be covered in Home Education (and for how long) in Michigan?
In both options, the subjects that must be included in the instruction of each homeschool for all grades are Mathematics, Reading, English, Science and Social Studies. Furthermore, for the 10thto the 12th grade, the Constitution of the United States, the Constitution of Michigan, U.S. Government, and State Government are additional subjects for them to take. The duration of each subject is at the discretion of the homeschool teachers.
What are the recordkeeping requirements for homeschoolers in Michigan?
The parents are recommended to keep the progress of each student who is attending the homeschool. These records are to be maintained throughout the year. They will help school personnel with regard to the placement of students should they decide to enroll in a public school. If a student who attends homeschool decides to return to a public school, the latter reevaluates the students for the purpose of grade placement and credit transfer.
Is part-time enrollment permitted in Michigan?
Yes, part-time enrollment is permitted in Michigan. This is stated in the published Pupil Accounting Manual of the state’s Department of Education specifically in chapter 5E. A pupil attending a nonpublic school or a student who is homeschooled may attend a public school on a part-time enrollment in the 1st to 12th grade as long as it is only in the nonessential elective courses offered by that public school.
Are homeschoolers permitted to participate in extracurricular activities in Michigan?
Yes, this is also allowed in the state of Michigan. However, this is determined by the public school on a case to case basis. The supervision and control of interscholastic athletics depend on the decision of each local board of education.
Below are some advantages of homeschooling you should know about:
As proposed by the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA), the majority of the local boards have adopted policies in determining whether or not to let a student join in the athletics of the public school.