Arkansas General Assembly
ARKANSAS DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR HOME SCHOOLS
1.00 - REGULATORY AUTHORITY 1.01 - These regulations shall be known as Arkansas Department of Education Regulations governing Home Schools. 1.02 - These regulations are enacted pursuant to the State Board of Education's authority under Ark. Code Ann. 6-15-501 through 507 (Repl. 1993) as amended by Act 522 of 1995 and Act 400 of 1997.
2.00 - PURPOSE 2.01 - It is the purpose of these regulations to set the reasonable guidelines for the operation of Home Schools.
3.00 - DEFINITIONS 3.01 - For the purposes of these Rules and Regulations, a "home school" is a school conducted primarily by parents or legal guardians for their own children. 3.02 - For the purposes of these Rules and Regulations, a "testing window" is an established testing calendar as determined by the Arkansas Department of Education. 3.03 - For the purposes of these Rules and Regulations, "alternate testing procedures" refers to any testing date(s) and/or location(s) within the testing window and approved by the education service cooperatives and Pulaski County school districts for home school students. 3.04 - For the purposes of these Rules and Regulations, "a norm-referenced test ( NRT )" is any testing instrument required by state law, rule or regulation to measure the performance/achievement of Arkansas students relative to the performance of the achievement of students who comprise the norming or standardization group for a particular commercial instrument. 3.05 - For the purposes of these Rules and Regulations, an "individualized education program ( IEP )" is a written record of decisions reached between parent/guardian and school personnel jointly describing the educational program for a child with a disability. 3.06 - For the purposes of these Rules and Regulations, "current school year" is the official period of time for pupil teacher interaction within the school district policy which follows the guidelines in Ark. Code Ann. 6-10-106 (Uniform dates for beginning and ending a school year.).
4.00 - GENERAL 4.01 - Under Arkansas law children between the ages of five (5) and seventeen (17), inclusive in accordance with Ark. Code Ann. 6-18-201 (statute referencing the compulsory attendance age requirement) must attend school. 4.02 - For the purpose of this Act, a parent/guardian who intends to home school a child in accordance with Ark. Code Ann. 6-18-201 must enroll the child in home school within ten (10) days of, or before, the first day of the current school year or at any time during the school year the parent/guardian withdraws the child from the local school district. Any parent/guardian who withdraws a student from public, private or parochial school any time during the school year shall file an Intent to Home School form and Waiver form with the superintendent of the local school district. These forms shall be filed within ten (10) days of withdrawal from the public, private or parochial school. As described in Section Five (5) in these Rules and Regulations, any student entering home schooling during the school year shall participate in the required State testing program at the required grade levels. 4.03 - Parent/guardian may elect for a child, who will not be kindergarten age in accordance with Ark. Code Ann. 6-18-201, not to attend kindergarten by filing a Kindergarten Waiver form with the local school district administration office. 4.04 - A home school is defined as a school conducted primarily by parents or legal guardians for their own children. 4.05 - Home school students who enroll in a public, private or parochial school during the time they are home schooling cannot re-enter home schooling until new Notice of Intent and Waiver forms are completed and returned to the local school district. 4.06 - Home school students who are in the required grade levels for which the state mandates norm-referenced testing and who are no more than two (2) years beyond the normal age for the required grade levels must take a standardized norm- referenced test as identified by the Arkansas Department of Education and results will be used for reporting purposes only. 4.07 - Books, curricula or materials are not furnished by the Arkansas Department of education, local school district or education service cooperative. It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to purchase all books, curricula or materials that they use in home schooling.
5.00 - NOTICE OF INTENT 5.01 - Parents or Guardians who plan to home school must file written notice by completing and returning the printed current year Notice of Intent and Waiver forms to the public school superintendent's office of their local school district within ten (10) days of, or before, the first day of the current school year or at any time during the school year that the parent/guardian withdraws the child( ren ) from the local school district. Parent/guardian who withdraws their child( ren ) during the school year must complete a current year printed Notice of Intent and Waiver forms within ten (10) days of, or before, the beginning of the school year thereafter. There are no exceptions to these filing requirements except as outlined in 5.02. 5.02 - Any student(s) home schooled in another state prior to moving to Arkansas during the current school year may continue in a home school if the parent(s) or guardian(s) file the current year printed Notice of Intent and Waiver forms with their local public school superintendent's office within thirty (30) school days. 5.03 - The required Notice of Intent and Waiver forms must be the printed current year forms obtained from your local superintendent's office and must include the following information for reporting and test administration purposes only: a. The name, date of birth and grade level of each child and the name and attended, if any, for each student. b. The location of the home school (your mailing address) and phone number. c. A brief description of the basic core curriculum to be used and the subjects to be taught. d. Schedule of instruction to be followed (hours per day; days per week; number of weeks). e. The education qualifications of the parent/guardian/teacher(s). f. Parents or guardians shall deliver written notice in person to the superintendent of their local school district the first time such notice is given.
6.00 - TESTING REQUIRED 6.01 - ACHIEVEMENT TESTS a. Test administration of home school students shall be under the direction of the education service cooperatives and the Pulaski County school districts. Achievement testing will be held during the testing window identified by the Arkansas Department of Education. b. The education service cooperatives and Pulaski County school districts will ensure that all test materials are secure before testing, between and following test administration and provide the Arkansas Department of Education, for approval by the Director, with a common set of procedures for test administration of home school students in the required grade levels. These common set of procedures must include security measures to ensure that appropriate testing conditions and protocol have been followed as specified in the test administration materials. c. Each student enrolled in home school who is considered to be in the required grades or no more than two (2) years beyond the age appropriate grade will be tested by using the State identified norm-referenced achievement test. d. Parents/guardians or groups of home school parents/guardians requesting alternate testing procedures, protocols, locations and/or timeframe must be submitted in writing three (3) weeks prior to the testing window to the education service cooperatives or the Pulaski County school districts and testing must remain within the State identified testing dates. If approved, alternate testing procedure costs, other than the testing materials, shall be the responsibility of the parent/guardian. e. Alternate testing procedures and protocol will be arranged by the education service cooperatives and Pulaski County school districts. f. Requests from parent/guardian whose child( ren ) cannot test on Saturdays due to religious reasons will be accommodated. Parent/ guardians must indicate in the appropriate section at the time they file their Notice of Intent that their child( ren ) cannot test on Saturdays due to religious reasons.
7.00 - TEST RESULTS 7.01 - Test results for home school students will be used for reporting purposes only. The parent/guardian will receive the individual student profile. The Arkansas Department of Education will receive the administrative summaries. The administrative summaries will not contain personally identifiable information.
8.00 - TRANSFER OF STUDENTS 8.01 - Students transferring from a home school to a school which is accredited by the Arkansas Department of Education shall be evaluated by the staff of the accredited school to determine proper placement. As part of the ongoing assessment process, a State identified norm-referenced achievement test shall be one of the instruments utilized. 8.02 - Home Schools are not accredited by the Arkansas Department of Education. There are no grades, credits, transcripts or diploma provided by the Arkansas Department of Education, education service cooperative or by the local school district for students enrolled in home school. 8.03 - Any home school student who re-enters a local school district must attend classes for at least nine (9) months immediately prior to graduation before the student can become eligible to receive a high school diploma from the local school district.
9.00 - STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES 9.01 - By way of these regulations, it shall be the policy of the State Board of Education that school districts provide a genuine opportunity (see 34 C.F.R. Sec. 76.651(a)) to students who are home-schooled with disabilities, as defined in state regulations, to access special education and related services from the district where they reside. This policy is not to be construed as conferring the procedural protections and rights under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to such students and their parent/ guardians. 9.02 - Each student with disabilities in the required grades who participates in the norm- referenced testing program shall, upon notification in the application for testing, be eligible for any or all modifications allowed by the test procedures. The use of such modifications will be approved by the educational services cooperative director or his designee.
10.00 - DRIVER'S PERMIT/LICENSE 10.01 - A student enrolled in a home school shall present proof of home schooling in the form of a notarized copy of the Notice of Intent along with an application for an instructional permit or drivers license. The parent/guardian has the responsibility of providing the notarized copy.
Approved by State Board of Education: August 11, 1997, Amended: September 8, 1997, Contact Person: Mr. Frank Anthony