Information on What is Required of Alaska Homeschoolers
If you are considering homeschooling in Alaska, there are some regulations that you need to be aware of. Find out what is required for homeschooling in this state.
Homeschool Parent Education Requirements
Five different options for homeschooling are acceptable in Alaska. The first option allows for a traditional homeschool. A parent or legal guardian may teach their child at home. There are no requirements for the parent or guardian pertaining to required degrees or qualifications.
It is also acceptable to acquire a private tutor for your child. Any private tutor that is used must have state teacher certification.
A third option allows your child to enroll in a full-time correspondence program that is sponsored by the Alaska State Department of Education. Again with this option, there does not need to be any qualifications that need to be met by the parent or guardian that lives in the home and will oversee the completion of the correspondence work.
Requesting approval from your local school board to provide your child with an equal yet alternate education is also acceptable. If your request is accepted, no qualifications are required of the parent or guardian in the home.
Finally, you can educate your child in a school that is considered private or religious. Such schools do not necessarily need to hire certified teachers.
Forms and Paperwork Required
Out of the five options available for alternate schooling, the only one that requires any special paperwork to the state is attending a private or religious school. A “Private School Enrollment Reporting Form” must be filed with your local superintendent by the first day of public school. By October 15 of that school year, a “Private and Denominational Schools Enrollment Report” and a “School Calendar” must be filed every year with the State Education Department. Also, the school is required to submit attendance records to the state.
Do realize that although getting permission from your local school board for an alternate educational experience may not officially require any forms, your school board could very well have some paperwork that must be completed in order for them to be able to look at your request. This will vary from school district to school district.
Kindergarten Homeschool Requirements
Alaska’s compulsory attendance age does not begin until a child is seven years old, so reporting during kindergarten is not necessary, although if your child does start school when he is six years old and in first grade at a public school, that child will also be held to the compulsory attendance law.
The Alaska State Department of Education only requires testing from public schools and schools that qualify as a private or religious school. For this alternate education option, students must take standardized tests while in the 4th, 6th, and 8th grades. All other homeschooling options are exempt from needing to take any standardized testing, whatsoever. If a personal tutor would like a student to take a standardized test, then a parent may request one from the state, but it is entirely optional.
Other Useful Information
Under Alaska law, in most homeschooling options it is up to the state to prove that education is not being obtained if actual schooling is suspected of not taking place. For any support or ideas, the Alaska Private and Home Educators Association website may be of help. Also, be sure to use the Home School Legal Defense Association as a source of homeschooling information for Alaska.