The Leicester School Committee acknowledges the right of parents to educate their children at home or elsewhere, however, approval is required in advance. The School Committee hereby designates the Superintendent as its agent to approve or disapprove parents’ requests for conducting such home education. Any approval or rejection of an application by the Superintendent is subject to review by the Committee.

The School Committee wishes to ensure its cooperation with parents who may choose to educate children at home so that the best interests of children will be served. In reviewing such requests, the parties will adhere to the following procedure:

  1. The parent/guardian must submit written notification of establishment of the home-based program to the appropriate administrator at least 14 days before the program is established. The parent must re-submit notification on an annual basis as long as the child is being educated in a home-based environment and the child is under 16 years of age.
  2. A complete individual home education plan must be submitted annually. This plan shall include:
    1. the amount of time to be devoted to home instruction in every subject area on a weekly basis;
    2. a list of all materials to be used for the home instruction;
    3. the name of any and all persons who will conduct the home instruction; and
    4. a plan for evaluation of the child’s progress in every subject area.

Children in home instruction may, at the discretion of parents or guardian, attend the public schools on a part-time basis. It may be an advantage for a home-taught child to attend specialized classes in the public school. Responsibility for transportation to and from the home for part-time course work is the responsibility of the parent or guardian.

Parents or a legal guardian in charge of home instruction should make provision for regular testing or use of other indicators of student progress such as standardized achievement tests. As an alternative to home testing and at the request of those in charge of the home instruction, the School District will make provision for inclusion of home-taught children in annual district assessments. Students being educated in a home-based program are not eligible to take the state MCAS tests
The factors considered by the Superintendent in deciding to approve or disapprove a proposed home education program include:
  1. The competency of the teachers/parents to teach their children and their willingness to do so in good faith. Parents will be required to submit written documentation of their own educational background demonstrating their ability to provide home instruction. Although not a requirement, evidence of an earned college degree and/or Massachusetts certification as a public school teacher, as well as the absence thereof, will be taken into consideration
  2. The number of hours and days devoted to teaching
  3. The adequacy of the texts, materials, methods and subject matter to be covered
  4. The availability of records or portfolios of accomplishments of the child’s educational activities
  5. Evidence of periodic progress consistent with the individual plan of each child
  6. Evidence that the child will be tested periodically to measure educational progress and ensure that minimal standards are being maintained.

Following the ending date of the home instruction, the parent(s) shall submit a home instruction report to the Superintendent indicating the general area of student study and the progress of the student in each subject during the academic year. Should the Superintendent determine the reports to show insufficient progress, the parent shall be so notified and a meeting shall be convened to determine whether the approval shall be revoked. If deficiencies in a home education situation are not corrected or the proper annual application or summary is not completed by the parents or legal guardian, an appropriate referral will be made.

Students being educated in a home-based program do not receive Leicester High School credits and, therefore, cannot receive a L.H.S. diploma. In order for a home-schooled student to receive a high school diploma, the student must be enrolled in a home schooling program and through their credit system. The student must meet their diploma requirements. A student may transfer credits from an accredited home schooling program, however, no class rank or Q.P.A. will be assigned for the home schooling credits.
Parent(s) or guardian(s) are entitled to all due process rights with regard to this policy and with regard to any procedures followed and taken. During any resolution process the parent(s) or guardian(s) may continue, but not commence, the education of their child/children at home.

ADOPTED: Prior to 2013
REVISED: December 12, 2017