Public Policy Update: NC Parents who Homeschool Gain Options for Instruction

homeschooling

This past legislative session, the General Assembly passed changes to North Carolina homeschool laws that allow more flexibility in instructional options. Senate Bill 189 redefined a homeschool to be a nonpublic school consisting of the children of not more than two families of “households where the parents or legal guardians or members of either household determine the scope and sequence of academic instruction, provide academic instruction, and determine additional sources of academic instruction.”

Previously, the law required parents or legal guardians to provide all of the instruction. While homeschool advocates recommend that parents still provide some of the instruction, the new law allows for parents, legal guardians, and members of the household to hire outside experts, homeschool teachers, or special education specialists. They also can form co-ops, use apprentice programs, and take part in other outside educational opportunities as part of their children’s educational experience.

Some parents and caregivers of children on the autism spectrum have found homeschooling to be a good option for the unique needs of their children. If you are considering homeschooling, be sure to take a look at our homeschool guide; homeschools must register with the state and follow some additional requirements. We have updated the guide with these changes to the law.

If you have questions about public policy issues, please contact Jennifer Mahan, Director of Advocacy and Public Policy, at 919-865-5068 or jmahan@autismsociety-nc.org.

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