Instruction & Subjects Brief

Alabama

No requirements: Church schools are required to “offer instruction,” but what subjects must be covered, at what grade level, or how much instruction must be provided is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Alaska

No requirements: The statute defines a homeschooled child as one who is “being educated” by a parent or guardian, but what subjects must be covered, at what grade level, or how much instruction must be provided is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Arizona

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in reading, grammar, mathematics, social studies, and science, but how much instruction or at what grade level is not specified. There is no assessment requirement. 

Arkansas

No requirements: The statute defines a homeschool as “a school” provided by a parent or guardian, but what subjects must be covered or how much instruction must be provided is not specified. Students must take a standardized test at the end of each school year, but this is for data collection only and is not used to assess individual students.

California

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in “the several branches of study required in public schools,” but how much instruction or at what grade level is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Colorado

Subject, instruction, and assessment requirements: Parents are required by law to provide 172 days of instruction, averaging four instructional contact hours per day, in the communication skills of reading, writing, and speaking, mathematics, history, civics, literature, science, and the U.S. Constitution. Students must be assessed at the ends of grades 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11, but the threshold for intervention is low. 

Connecticut

Equivalent instruction requirement: Parents are required by law to offer “equivalent instruction in the studies taught in the public schools.” There is no assessment requirement.

Delaware

No requirements: Homeschooling is defined as “the education of children” in the home, but what subjects must be covered, at what grade level, or how much instruction must be provided is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

District of Columbia

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, art, music, health, and physical education. Instruction must be “thorough” and “regular” and “of sufficient duration to implement the home school program.” There is no assessment requirement.

Florida

Assessment requirement: Under the homeschool code, there are no mandated subjects or required hours of instruction. However, homeschooled students must be assessed annually and must demonstrate education progress “at a level commensurate with her or his ability.”

Instruction requirement: Under the private school law, private schools must offer 180 days of instruction, but in what subjects or at what grade level is not specified. There is also no assessment requirement.

Georgia

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies, and science. This instruction must take place for the “equivalent to” 180 days consisting of 4.5 hours of instruction each day. Students must be assessed by standardized test every three years, but the results are for personal use only and are not submitted to the school district.

Hawaii

Assessment requirement: While the homeschool statute includes a basic list of subjects, these subjects are listed as suggestions rather than requirements. How much instruction must be provided, or at what grade level, is not specified. However, students must be assessed annually and must demonstrate “adequate progress.”

Idaho

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction “in subjects commonly and usually taught in the public schools of Idaho.” How much instruction must be provided, or at what grade level, is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Illinois

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in “the branches of education taught to children of corresponding age and grade in the public schools.” How much instruction must be provided is not specified. There is no assessment requirement. 

Indiana

Equivalent instruction requirements: Parents must provide “instruction equivalent” to that in public schools. Homeschools must operate for the same number of days each year as public schools. There is no assessment requirement. 

Iowa

Subject requirement: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in mathematics, reading and language arts, science, and social studies. How much instruction must be provided, or at what grade level, is not specified. There is no assessment requirement. Parents can alternatively choose to homeschool under the supervision of a certified teacher or to provide 148 days of instruction and make “adequate progress.”

Kansas

Instruction requirement: Parents are required to provide instruction “for a period of time which is substantially equivalent to the period of time public school is maintained.” What subjects must be covered, and at what grade level, is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Kentucky

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to “offer instruction in the several branches of study required to be taught in the public schools of the state.” At what grade level is not specified. Homeschools must have a term no shorter than that of the local school district. There is no assessment requirement. 

Louisiana

Subject and assessment requirements: Under the homeschool code, parents are required by law to “offer a sustained curriculum of quality at least equal to that offered by public schools at the same grade level.” How much instruction must take place is not specified. Students must be assessed annually, and the results must demonstrate that the required education is taking place.

Instruction requirement: Under the private school law, parents must provide 180 days of instruction, but in what subjects or at what grade level is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Maine

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide 175 days of instruction in English and language arts, math, science, social studies, physical and health education, library skills, fine arts, main studies, and computer proficiency. At what grade level is not specified. Students must be assessed annually, but it is the parent who determines whether adequate progress is being made.

Maryland

Subject requirements: When homeschooling under the supervision of the local school district, parents are required by law to provide instruction “in the studies usually taught in the public schools to children of the same age.” How much instruction must be provided is not specified, but it must be “regular” and “thorough.” School officials may request to see a portfolio of students’ work, but are not required by law to do so.

No requirements: When homeschooling under the supervision of a church school or approved private school, mandated subjects and required hours of instruction, along with assessment requirements if any, are set by the supervising school.

Massachusetts

Equivalent instruction and assessment requirements: The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts ruled that the education provided in a homeschool must equal “in thoroughness and efficiency, and in the progress made therein, that in the public schools in the same town.” Individual school districts may set their own assessment requirements. 

Michigan

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to offer “an organized educational program in the subject areas of reading, spelling, mathematics, science, history, civics, literature, writing, and English grammar. How much instruction must be provided, or at what grade level, is not specified. There is no assessment requirement. Parents may also choose to register their homeschools as private schools, in which case the subjects they cover must be “comparable to those taught in the public schools to children of corresponding age and grade.”

Minnesota

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in reading, writing, literature, fine arts, math, science, history, geography, government, health, and physical education. How much instruction must be provided and at what grade level is not specified. Homeschooled students must take an annual standardized test, but the results are for personal use only and are not submitted to the school district. 

Mississippi

No requirements: The statute states speaks of a child “being educated” in a home instruction program, but what subjects must be covered, at what grade level, or how much instruction must be provided is not specified. There is no assessment requirement. 

Missouri

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide 1,000 hours of instruction, of which 600 must be in reading, math, social studies, language arts, and science. At what grade level is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Montana

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide “an organized course of study that includes instruction in the subjects required of public schools as a basic instructional program. This instruction must take place for 720 or 1,080 hours per year, depending on the grade. There is no assessment requirement.

Nebraska

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide “a sequential program of instruction designed to lead to basic skills in the language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, and health.” This instruction must take place for 1,032 or 1,080 hours per year, depending on the grade. There is no assessment requirement.

Nevada

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide an educational plan of instruction covering “English, including reading, composition and writing, mathematics, science and social studies, including history, geography, economics and government” and “appropriate for the age and level of skill of the child as determined by the parent.” How much instruction must be provided is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

New Hampshire

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in science, mathematics, language, government, history, health, reading, writing, spelling, U.S. and New Hampshire constitutional history, and art and music. How much instruction must be provided, and at what grade level, is not specified. Homeschooled students must be assessed annually, but the results are for personal use only and are not submitted to the school district.

New Jersey

Equivalent instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction “academically equivalent” to that provided in public school. How much instruction must be provided is not specified. There is no assessment requirement. 

New Mexico

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies, and science. How much instruction must be provided, and at what grade level, is not specified. There is no assessment requirement. 

New York

Subject, instruction, and assessment requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in a long list of subjects that varies by grade level. This instruction must take place for 900 or 990 hours per year, depending on the grade. Homeschooled students must be assessed annually, and this assessment must demonstrate “adequate progress.”

North Carolina

Instruction requirement: Parents are required by law to operate their homeschools “on a regular schedule, excluding reasonable holidays and vacations, during at least nine calendar months of the year.” However, in what subjects or at what grade level instruction must be provided, or even that instruction must be provided at all, is not specified. Homeschooled students must take an annual standardized test, but the results are for personal use only and are not submitted to the school district.

North Dakota

Subject, instruction, and assessment requirements: Parents are required by law to provide “instruction in those subjects required by law to be taught to public school students. This instruction must take place for at least four hours each day for at least 175 days each year. At what grade level is not specified. Homeschooled students in grades 4, 6, 8, and 10 must take a standardized test and score at at least the thirtieth percentile. Parents with bachelor’s degrees may opt out if they have a philosophical, moral, or religious objection to standardized testing.

Ohio

Subject, instruction, and assessment requirements: Parents are required to provide instruction in language, reading, spelling, writing, geography, history of the U.S. and Ohio, national, state, and local government, math, science, health, physical education, fine arts, including music, first aid, safety, and fire prevention. This instruction must be provided for at least 900 hours per year. At what grade level is not specified. Homeschooled students must be assessed annually and must demonstrate reasonable proficiency or academic progress in accordance with their ability. Parents with bachelor’s degrees may bypass this assessment requirement by registering as 08 schools.

Oklahoma

Instruction requirement: Parents are required by law to provide 180 days of instruction, but in what subjects and at what grade level is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Oregon

Assessment requirement: The statute defines homeschooled children as those “being educated . . . by a parent or legal guardian,” but what subjects must be covered, at what grade level, or how much instruction must be provided is not specified. Homeschooled students must be tested at the end of grades 3, 5, 8, and 10, but the threshold for intervention is low.

Pennsylvania

Subject, instruction, and assessment requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in a long list of subjects that vary by grade level. This instruction must take place for 180 days, or for 900 or 990 hours depending on the grade. Homeschooled students must be assessed annually, and this assessment must demonstrate that appropriate education is occurring. 

Rhode Island

Subject, instruction, and assessment requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in reading, writing, geography, arithmetic, the history of the United States, the history of Rhode Island, and the principles of American government.” This instruction, which must take place for a term “substantially equal to that required by law in public schools,” must be “thorough and efficient” and provided “to the same extent as these subjects are required to be taught in the public schools.” Individual school districts may set their own assessment requirements. 

South Carolina

Subject and instruction requirements: When homeschooling under the approval of the district board of trustees, parents must provide instruction in reading, writing, math, science, and social studies, and, in grades 7 through 12, composition and literature. This instruction must take place for 180 days, for 4.5 hours per day. At what grade level is not specified. Students must be assessed annually and must score the minimum for advancing to the next grade. However, parents may bypass this assessment requirement by homeschooling under the auspices of a homeschool association. 

South Dakota

Subject, instruction, and assessment requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction “in the basic skills of language arts and mathematics” “for an equivalent period of time” as public schools. At what grade level is not specified. Students must take a standardized test in grades 2, 4, 8, and 11 and demonstrate “satisfactory academic progress.”

Tennessee

Instruction and assessment requirements: When homeschooling through the local school district, parents must provide instruction for four hours each day for 180 days. What subjects must be covered, and at what grade level, is not specified. Students must be assessed at the end of grades 5, 7, and 9, and must not be more than 6 to 9 months behind in reading, language arts, mathematics, or science.

Instruction requirement: When homeschooling through a church-related school, parents must have a term of no less than 180 days. However, in what subjects or at what grade level instruction must be provided, or even that instruction must be provided at all, is not specified by law and is at the discretion of the church-related school. Assessment requirements, if any, are set by the church-related school.

Texas

Subject requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in good citizenship, math, reading, spelling, and grammar. How much instruction must be provided, and at what grade level, is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Utah

No requirements: The state statute allows for a student to attend a “home school,” but what subjects are taught, for how long, and at what grade level is left solely up to the parent. There is no assessment requirement. 

Vermont

Subject and assessment requirements: Parents are required by law to provide a “minimum course of study” in: Basic communication skills, including reading, writing, and the use of numbers; Citizenship, history, and government in Vermont and the United States; Physical education and comprehensive health education; English, American and other literature; The natural sciences; and The fine arts. How much instruction must be provided, and at what grade level, is not specified. Students must be assessed annually and the results must show that the student is receiving the required minimum course of study.

Virginia

Instruction and assessment requirements: Under the homeschool statute, parents are required by law to provide instruction 180 days or 990 hours each year, but what subjects must be covered, and at what grade level, is not specified. Students must be assessed annually and must achieve the 23rd percentile on a standardized test or show “an adequate level of educational growth and progress” in a portfolio evaluation.

No requirements: Under the religious exemption, parents are not required to provide any instruction whatsoever.

Washington

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide instruction in the basic skills of occupational education, science, mathematics, language, social studies, history, health, reading, writing, spelling, and the development of an appreciation of art and music. These requirements must be “liberally construed.” This instruction must be provided for at least 180 days or 1000 hours per year, but at what grade level is not specified. Students must be assessed annually, but the results are for personal use only and are not submitted to the school district. Parents who choose to homeschool under the supervision of an approved private school are subject to these same requirements, except that the annual assessment is conducted by a teacher assigned by the supervising school.

West Virginia

Assessment requirement: Parents who homeschool under the “approval” option must provide instruction for 180 days. Subject and assessment requirements are at the discretion of the school board. Parents who homeschool under the “notice” option have no subject requirements or required hours of instruction. However, students must be assessed annually in reading, language, mathematics, science, and social studies, and show acceptable progress.

Wisconsin

Subject and instruction requirements: Parents are required by law to provide “a sequentially progressive curriculum of fundamental instruction in reading, language arts, math, social studies, science and health.” Instruction must take place for 875 hours per year. At what grade level is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

Wyoming

Subject requirements: Parents must provide “a sequentially progressive curriculum of fundamental instruction in reading, writing, mathematics, civics, history, literature and science.” How much instruction must be provided, or at what grade level, is not specified. There is no assessment requirement.

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