Compulsory attendance is required for children ages 6 through 16.
Parents and guardians must submit within 30 days after the establishment of a home student program and by September 1 annually thereafter a declaration of intent to utilize home study to the superintendent of schools of the local district in which the home study program is located. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(c)(1).
The submission must include in the declaration a list of the names and ages of the students who are enrolled, the address where the home study program is located, and a statement of the 12-month period being considered the school year for this program. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(c)(2).
Parents may teach their own children if they hold at least a high school diploma or GED, or may employ a tutor who holds at least a high school diploma or GED. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(c)(3).
The home study program must include, but is not limited to, reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies, and science. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(c)(4).
The home study program must provide instruction each 12 months equivalent to 180 school days with each consisting of at least four and one-half school hours. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(c)(5).
Students in home study programs are eligible to participate in dual credit courses at eligible postsecondary institutions. Participating eligible postsecondary institutions must enter into a participation agreement with the commission that includes providing course books and accepting the amount paid by the commission as full payment for the high school students participation. The commission shall be funded in Fiscal Year 2016, which begins July 1, 2015. O.C.G.A. §20-2-161.3.
Students in home study programs must take an appropriate nationally standardized test administered in consultation with a person specifically trained in administration and interpretation of norm reference tests, at least every three years beginning at the end of third grade, and the program must retain the results of these tests, although they are not required to be submitted to the local superintendent. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(c)(7).
The home study program instructor must write an annual progress assessment report to include the instructor's individualized assessment of the student's academic progress in each required subject area and the parents or guardians must retain the reports for a period of at least three years. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(c)(8).
Home school students that meet the requirements of O.C.G.A.§20-2-690 will be considered private school students for the purposes of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S. Code Annotated (USCA)Section 1400, et seq. They will be provided with the same special education and related services as students enrolled in private schools. O.C.G.A. §20-2-159.
Private schools must provide 180 days of instruction each 12 months, with each school day consisting of four and one-half school hours. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(b)(3),(d).
Private schools must provide a basic academic educational program that includes, but is not limited to, reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies, and science. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(b)(4),(d).
Children between the ages of 6 and 16 excused from attendance at private schools for sickness, emergencies, or other reasons authorized by board policy for public schools, are exempt from compulsory attendance. O.C.G.A. §20-2-693(b).
The local school superintendent or visiting teachers and attendance officer will report truants to the appropriate court after written notice to the parent or guardian. O.C.G.A. §20-2-701.
Students in private schools are eligible to participate in dual credit courses at eligible postsecondary institutions. Participating eligible postsecondary institutions must enter into a participation agreement with the commission that includes providing course books and accepting the amount paid by the commission as full payment for the high school students participation. The commission must be funded in Fiscal Year 2016, which begins July 1, 2015. O.C.G.A. §20-2-161.3.
Private school administrators must report their enrollment to the local public school superintendent where the student resides within 30 days of the beginning of each school year. The reports must include the name, age, and residence of each student. Notice must be given monthly of any student's admission or withdrawal from the school. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(b)(5).
The Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE) provides forms necessary to comply with the reporting requirements through its website.
The principal administrative officer or his designee in a private school is responsible for issuing employment certificates for students between the ages of 12 and 16 years old. The certificate must verify the student's age and physical ability to engage in the particular employment. Students between 16 and 18 years of age also need a copy of the certificate maintained in their school file. O.C.G.A. §39-2-11.
Private school buildings must meet all health and safety standards established under state law and local ordinances. O.C.G.A. §20-2-690(b)(6).
A parent's religious beliefs concerning vaccinations is not a valid excuse for the parent's failure to have a child vaccinated, preventing a child from attending school. 1950-51 Opinion Attorney General p. 47. See also Anderson v. State, 65 S.E.2d 848 (1951).
Georgia Department of Education
205 Jesse Hill Jr. Drive SE
Atlanta, GA 30334-5001
Phone: (404) 656-2800
Fax: (404) 651-8737
Parents or guardians who wish to teach their children at home in a home study program must annually submit to the Georgia Department of Education a Georgia Declaration of Intent Form (PDF) to Utilize a Home Study Program by September 1 or within 30 days after a program is established.
The declaration must include the names and ages of the students, the address where the program is located, and the dates of the school year.
Declaration of Intent forms must be submitted by the parent or guardian only. The GaDOE will not accept third party DOI submissions. The DOI should be submitted electronically If possible. However, you may also submit the DOE by mail, email or fax.
Please note when mailing, emailing, or faxing, it may take several weeks to input your DOI into our database. After the Declaration of Intent form is submitted electronically you will be prompted to save and print a copy of the form for your records. However, you will not receive any confirmation from the GaDOE that your Declaration of Intent form was received.
Fields with a red asterisk (*) are required fields.
"Signature" and "Date Submitted" is not required on the online electronic submission form.
"The school year for this home school study program"- The law requires 180 instructional days. Please use the actual date you begin teaching your child/children at home as the beginning date and count forward to the 180 instructional days limit.
If your child/children began the school year in a public or private school, that time can be included as part of the 180 instructional days requirement. You can teach more than 180 days if you desire.
"Submit Your Declaration of Intent" button located at the bottom of form. After you click the submit button, you will receive a screen that shows a 36 unique character parent signature line as well as the date of submission.
Print and save a copy of this form for your records. This is the only document you are required to submit to the Georgia Department of Education. The Declaration of Intent form represents confirmation that your child/children are officially registered in Georgia's home study program. Your Declaration of Intent form with the digital signature on the parent/guardian signature line is the official document of the Georgia Home Study Program.
This document should be used to obtain driver's license/permits, work permits, post-secondary admission, military enlistment, and for all other entities that require proof of educational enrollment for homeschool students.
The Georgia Department of Education does not endorse, promote or provide a curriculum for your home study program. Each parent/guardian must decide which curriculum is best for their child and then purchase the curriculum on their own.
It is advisable to choose your home study curriculum prior to registering your child/children by submitting the "Declaration of Intent" online.
Georgia’s home study law (O.C.G.A. § 20-2-690) requires homeschool parents/guardians to provide a basic academic educational program which includes the five content areas below. You may also teach other content areas.
English Language Arts,
Social Studies, and
The school year must include the equivalent of 180 days of at least 4-1/2 hours of instruction per day unless the child is physically unable to comply with this requirement.
As of July 1, 2013, you are no longer required to submit attendance to the Georgia Department of Education.
The instructor shall write an annual progress assessment report in each required subject area for each student. These reports shall be retained for at least three years.
Students in home study programs shall be subject to an appropriate nationally standardized testing program administered in consultation with a person trained in the administration and interpretation of norm referenced tests.
The student must be evaluated at least every three years beginning at the end of the third grade. Records of such tests shall be retained.
Parents or guardians may teach only their own children in the home study program provided the teaching parent or guardian possesses at least a high school diploma or a general equivalency diploma (GED). Parents or guardians may also employ a tutor who holds at least a high school diploma or a GED to teach such children.
Please note that the Georgia Cyber Academy and the Georgia Connections Academy are online public charter schools and are not affiliated with the home study program. If you are interested in these schools you must contact them directly.
If you wish to return your child to public school, you may do so at any time. You can create a withdrawal form and give it to the local school. The local school must validate each content area your child/children took while being enrolled in a home study program. This validation process is unique to each district. If you have questions related to this process, please contact your local school district.
Work permit forms required by the Department of Labor in accordance with the law O.C.G.A. § 39-2-11 provides in part: § 39-2-11. Employment certificates -- Required; requirements for issuance. GaDOE is ONLY responsible for issuing the Declaration of Intent (DOI) for the work permits. On receipt of your DOI, please access the Georgia Department of Labor for instruction on obtaining the Home Study Program Employment Certificate.
If you are wishing to withdraw from home school to obtain your GED, download and print the two documents below.
Source: Georgia Department of Education
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