Tags: homeschool | restrictions | education | local

Pennsylvania Loosens Homeschool Restrictions, States to Follow

By    |   Tuesday, 06 Jan 2015 06:16 PM

In the wake of loosened restrictions on homeschoolers in Pennsylvania, which had one of the strictest homeschool laws in the nation, lawmakers in at least three other states are ready to ease regulations, a lawyer for a homeschool advocacy group says.

"It has been a trend to remove unnecessary burdens from homeschoolers," Mike Donnelly, a lawyer for the Home School Legal Defense Association told The Blaze.

"A dozen or so states have updated their laws in the last 10 or 15 years. Most of the regulations were drafted 35 to 40 years ago when homeschooling was an unknown. Today we know that homeschooling works well and that some regulations are unnecessary and burdensome."

According to the Blaze, the number of children being homeschooled rose to 1.8 million in the 2011-2012 school year, up from 1.5 million five years earlier, with the highest concentration in the South and West.

In West Virginia, lawmakers are planning a legislative package on homeschooling, the Blaze reports, but Donnelly wouldn't name other states mulling an ease to restrictions, and insisted no state is considering tightening regulations.

The New York Times reports that in October Pennsylvania relaxed some ruless, which had required student portfolios and results of standardized testing in third, fifth and eighth grade be submitted to the local school district superintendent.

Now, Pennsylvania allows parents need only certify their children completed high school graduation requirements.

"Here we are loosening standards for a subset of students while at the same time giving them the same credential as all other students," Jim Buckheit, executive director of the Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators, complained to The Times.

The Times reports 11 states don’t require families to register with a state or local government agency, while 14 states don’t specify required subjects. In about half the states, homeschooled children don't have to take a standardized test.

Last year, Utah lawmakers passed a law lifting requirements that homeschoolers file affidavits once per year with the school district.

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In the wake of loosened restrictions on homeschoolers in Pennsylvania, which had one of the strictest homeschool laws in the nation, lawmakers in at least three other states are ready to ease regulations, a lawyer for a homeschool advocacy group says. It has been a trend...
homeschool, restrictions, education, local
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2015-16-06
Tuesday, 06 Jan 2015 06:16 PM
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