Home Schooling Overview
Washington state law RCW 28A.225.010(4) defines instruction as home-based if it consists of planned and supervised instructional and related educational activities including curriculum and 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.
Instructional program requirements
RCW 28A.195.010(1) requires minimum annual program hours of:
- Kindergarten - at least a total of 450 hours
- Grades 1 through 12 - an annual average total of 1,000 hours
RCW 28A.225.010(4) requires parents to be qualified by way of one of the following methods:
- Provided by a parent who is instructing his or her child only and are supervised by a certificated person. A certificated person for purposes of this chapter and chapter 28A.200 RCW shall be a person certified under chapter 28A.410 RCW. For purposes of this section, "supervised by a certificated person" means: The planning by the certificated person and the parent of objectives consistent with this subsection; a minimum each month of an average of one contact hour per week with the child being supervised by the certificated person; and evaluation of such child's progress by the certificated person. The number of children supervised by the certificated person shall not exceed thirty for purposes of this subsection; or
- Provided by a parent who is instructing his or her child only and who has either earned forty-five college level quarter credit hours or its equivalent in semester hours or has completed a course in home-based instruction at a postsecondary institution or a vocational-technical institute; or
- Provided by a parent who is deemed sufficiently qualified to provide home-based instruction by the superintendent of the local school district in which the child resides.
RCW 28A.200.010(4) establishes that parents whose child is receiving home-based instruction has the duty to:
- File annually a signed Declaration of Intent form that he or she is planning to cause his or her child to receive home-based instruction. The statement shall include the name and age of the child, shall specify whether a certificated person will be supervising the instruction, and shall be written in a format prescribed by the superintendent of public instruction. Each parent shall file the statement by September 15th of the school year or within two weeks of the beginning of any public school quarter, trimester, or semester with the superintendent of the public school district within which the parent resides or the district that accepts the transfer, and the student shall be deemed a transfer student of the nonresident district. Parents may apply for transfer under RCW 28A.225.220;
- Ensure that test scores or annual academic progress assessments and immunization records, together with any other records that are kept relating to the instructional and educational activities provided, are forwarded to any other public or private school to which the child transfers. At the time of a transfer to a public school, the superintendent of the local school district in which the child enrolls may require a standardized achievement test to be administered and shall have the authority to determine the appropriate grade and course level placement of the child after consultation with parents and review of the child's records; and
- Ensure that a standardized achievement test approved by the state board of education is administered annually to the child by a qualified individual or that an annual assessment of the student's academic progress is written by a certificated person who is currently working in the field of education. The state board of education shall not require these children to meet the student learning goals, master the essential academic learning requirements, to take the assessments, or to obtain a certificate of academic achievement or a certificate of individual achievement pursuant to RCW 28A.655.061 and 28A.155.045. The standardized test administered or the annual academic progress assessment written shall be made a part of the child's permanent records. If, as a result of the annual test or assessment, it is determined that the child is not making reasonable progress consistent with his or her age or stage of development, the parent shall make a good faith effort to remedy any deficiency.