IMPORTANT HOMESCHOOL UPDATE:
On May 9th, 2018, FPEA, Florida’s statewide homeschool association, sent a letter to all the school districts in the state to NOTIFY them of the new changes to homeschool law. Here is an excerpt of that letter:
“On March 30, 2018, Governor Scott signed House Bill 731 into law thereby clarifying rules and requirements for homeschooling in the State of Florida. House Bill 731 makes some key changes to Florida Statutes, Chapter 1002 and 1003. Based upon the passage of House Bill 731, the FPEA would like to take this opportunity to clarify the requirements for Florida families to register as a home education program. This letter will also provide guidance as to what information individual school districts may request from parents wishing to homeschool their children.
House Bill 731 makes pertinent changes to multiple sections of the Florida Statutes and provides as follows:
Florida Statutes, Chapter 1002.41(1) states that “A home education program is not a school district program and is registered with the district school superintendent only for the purpose of complying with the state’s attendance requirements” (emphasis added);
Also, in accordance with Florida Statutes, Chapter 1002.41(1)(a), the parent must provide notice in writing the full legal names, addresses and birthdates of all children who shall be enrolled as students in a home education program. As provided in Florida Statutes, Chapter 1002.41(1)(b), upon receipt of the aforementioned notice, “the district school superintendent shall accept the notice and immediately register the home education program upon receipt of the notice. The district may not require any additional information or verification from the parent unless the student chooses to participate in a school district program or service.” Furthermore, “the district school superintendent may not assign a grade level to the home education student or include a social security number or any other personal information of the student in any school district or state database unless the student chooses to participate in a school district program or service” (emphasis added). The district school superintendent may assign the appropriate grade level after consultation with the home education student’s parents should the student desire to participate in Bright Futures.
In addition, statutory changes provide the specific language in Florida Statutes, Chapter 1002.41(13) that, “A school district may not further regulate, exercise control over, or require documentation from parents of home education program students beyond the requirements of this section unless the regulation, control, or documentation is necessary for participation in a school district program.”
In an effort reduce confusion and difficulties in the process of parents registering a home education program as provided for in Florida Statutes, Chapter 1002.41, we respectfully request that your district take the appropriate steps to ensure that your staff is properly educated on Florida Statute, Chapter 1002.41 and statutory compliant homeschool polices in your district.”