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Iowa Dept. of Education - Private Instruction (Home School)
"Private Instruction is instruction using a plan and a course of study in a setting other than a public or organized accredited nonpublic school. It includes competent private instruction (CPI) by a licensed practitioner or a nonlicensed person, independent private instruction (IPI), home school assistance programs (HSAP), and non-accredited nonpublic schools. Iowa Code section 299A.1"
Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators
"The official site of the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators - with information and resources for families homeschooling in Iowa."
Homeschool Iowa Foundation
"Our mission is to build a legacy of funding and leadership for the advancement of Christian homeschooling and discipleship in Iowa."
Know the Law & the Rules
"The Iowa law and rules may seem quite complicated at first, but NICHE has created a number of resources and forms to help home educators find their way through the maze of regulations.
Below, you will find a brief overview of the legal requirements and options in Iowa."
Private Instruction Handbook 2014-2015
Provided by the Iowa Dept. of Education.
299A.1 Competent private instruction and independent private instruction.
"1. The parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child of compulsory attendance age who places the child under private instruction shall provide, unless otherwise exempted, competent private instruction or independent private instruction in accordance with this chapter. A parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child of compulsory attendance age who places the child under private instruction which is not competent private instruction or independent private instruction, or otherwise fails to comply with the requirements of this chapter, is subject to the provisions of sections 299.1 through 299.4 and the penalties provided in section 299.6."
299A.2 Competent private instruction by licensed practitioner.
"If a licensed practitioner provides competent instruction to a school-age child, the practitioner shall possess a valid license or certificate which has been issued by the state board of educational examiners under chapter 272 and which is appropriate to the ages and grade levels of the children to be taught. Competent private instruction may include but is not limited to a home school assistance program which provides instruction or instructional supervision offered through an accredited nonpublic school or public school district by a teacher, who is employed by the accredited nonpublic school or public school district, who assists and supervises a parent, guardian, or legal custodian in providing instruction to a child. If competent private instruction is provided through a public school district, the child shall be enrolled and included in the basic enrollment of the school district as provided in section 257.6."
299A.3 Private instruction by nonlicensed person.
"A parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child of compulsory attendance age providing private instruction to the child may meet all of the following requirements:
1. Complete and send, in a timely manner, the report required under section 299.4 to the school district of residence of the child.
2. Ensure that the child under the parent’s, guardian’s, or legal custodian’s instruction is evaluated annually to determine whether the child is making adequate progress, as defined in section 299A.6.
3. Ensure that the results of the child’s annual evaluation are reported to the school district of residence of the child and to the department of education by a date not later than June 30 of each year in which the child is under private instruction."
299A.4 Annual achievement evaluations — requirements and procedure.
"1. Each child of compulsory attendance age who is receiving competent private instruction shall either be evaluated annually by May 1, using a nationally recognized standardized achievement evaluation or other assessment tool developed or recognized by the department of education and chosen by the child’s parent, guardian, or legal custodian from a list of approved evaluations or assessment tools provided by the department of education or be evaluated annually in the manner provided in subsection 7. The department shall provide information on the cost of and the administration time required for each of the approved evaluations. The department shall provide, as part of approval procedures for evaluations to be used under this section, a mechanism which permits the introduction and approval of new or alternate methods of educational assessment which meet the requirements of this chapter."
299A.5 Reporting of evaluation results.
"The results of evaluations administered to children of compulsory attendance age who are under competent private instruction shall be reported by the evaluation administrator to the child’s parent, guardian, or legal custodian, the school district of residence of the child, and the department of education. Personally identifiable information relating to or contained in the evaluation scores is confidential and shall not be released without the prior consent of the child’s parent, guardian, or custodian except as otherwise permitted by law."
299A.6 Failure to make adequate progress.
"If the results of evaluations, administered to a child of compulsory attendance age who is under competent private instruction, indicate that the student has failed to make adequate progress, the parent, guardian, or legal custodian shall cause the child to attend an accredited public or nonpublic school at the beginning of the next school year unless, before the beginning of the next school year, the child retakes a different form of the same evaluation, or another evaluation from the approved list of tests or assessment tools recognized by the department of education, and the results indicate that adequate progress has been made, the child has demonstrated adequate performance in the opinion of an evaluator and documented in a report under section 299A.4, subsection 7, or the director of the department of education, or the director’s designee, grants approval for competent private instruction to continue under a plan for remediation."
299A.7 Notice to parents — remediation.
"If a child is placed under competent private instruction and the child fails to make adequate progress under competent private instruction, the director of the department of education, or the director’s designee, shall notify the parent, guardian, or custodian of the child that the child is required to attend an accredited public or nonpublic school, unless approval for competent private instruction under a remediation plan is granted. The director, or the director’s designee, may provisionally approve continued competent private instruction under an approved remediation plan designed to improve instruction for up to one year."
299A.8 Dual enrollment.
"1. If a parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a school-age child who is receiving competent private instruction under this chapter submits a request, the child shall also be registered in a public school for dual enrollment purposes. If the child is enrolled in a public school district for dual enrollment purposes, the child shall be permitted to participate in any academic activities in the district and shall also be permitted to participate on the same basis as public school children in any extracurricular activities available to children in the child’s grade or group. Dual enrollment of a child solely for purposes of accessing the annual achievement evaluation shall not constitute a dual enrollment purpose."
299A.9 Children requiring special education.
"A child of compulsory attendance age who is identified as requiring special education under chapter 256B is eligible for placement under competent private instruction with prior approval of the placement by the director of special education of the area education agency of the child’s district of residence.
A child who has been placed under competent private instruction, whose performance indicates that the child may require special education, shall be referred for evaluation under chapter 256B and the rules of the state board of education. Evaluation shall occur at a time and a place to be determined by the person responsible for conducting the evaluation. Persons conducting the evaluations shall make every reasonable effort to conduct the evaluations at times and places which are convenient for the parent, guardian, or legal custodian."
299A.12 Home school assistance program.
"1. The board of directors of a school district shall expend moneys received pursuant to section 257.6, subsection 1, paragraph “a”, subparagraph (5), for purposes of providing a home school assistance program."
299.1 Attendance requirements.
"1. Except as provided in section 299.2, the parent, guardian, or legal or actual custodian of a child who is of compulsory attendance age shall cause the child to attend some public school or an accredited nonpublic school, or place the child under competent private instruction or independent private instruction in accordance with the provisions of chapter 299A, during a school year, as defined under section 279.10.
2. The board of directors of a public school district or the governing body of an accredited nonpublic school shall set the number of days of required attendance for the schools under its control. The board of directors of a public school district or the governing body of an accredited nonpublic school may, by resolution, require attendance for the entire time when the schools are in session in any school year and adopt a policy or rules relating to the reasons considered to be valid or acceptable excuses for absence from school."
299.8 “Truant” defined.
"Any child of compulsory attendance age who fails to attend school as provided in this chapter, or as required by the school board’s or school governing body’s attendance policy, or who fails to attend competent private instruction or independent private instruction under chapter 299A, without reasonable excuse for the absence, shall be deemed to be a truant. A finding that a child is truant, however, shall not by itself mean that the child is a child in need of assistance within the meaning of chapter 232 and shall not be the sole basis for a child in need of assistance petition."
299.4 Reports as to private instruction.
"1. The parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child who is of compulsory attendance age, who places the child under competent private instruction under section 299A.2, not in an accredited school or a home school assistance program operated by a school district or accredited nonpublic school, shall furnish a report in duplicate on forms provided by the public school district, to the district by the earliest starting date specified in section 279.10, subsection 1. The secretary shall retain and file one copy and forward the other copy to the district’s area education agency. The report shall state the name and age of the child, the period of time during which the child has been or will be under competent private instruction for the year, an outline of the course of study, texts used, and the name and address of the instructor."
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