ECCHO is prepared to help our families who are facing the uncertainties of homeschooling in any way we can. We have compiled a list of Frequently Ask Questions to help you navigate and make decisions regarding homeschooling. We have also included resources to help offer support, encouragement, training, tips and more.
Q: Is it legal to homeschool in Texas?
A: The only requirements to legally homeschool in Texas are that:
The instruction must be bona fide (i.e. not a sham);
The curriculum must be in visual form (e.g. books, workbooks, video monitor);
The curriculum must include the basic subjects of reading, spelling, grammar, mathematics and good citizenship.
Your child may also be taught in another family’s home or you may use a tutor for instruction.
The courts have determined that Texas homeschools are private schools for the purpose of compulsory attendance. Therefore, homeschools are not regulated, do not require teacher certification or third-party curriculum approval and are exempt from compulsory attendance laws. Source: www.thsc.org
Q: Should I join a homeschool support group?
A: You do not have to be a part of a homeschool group to begin homeschooling your children. Homeschool support groups are definitely a great way to get extra encouragement along your homeschooling journey. Homeschool groups offer a wide variety of opportunities for your family such as Academic and Enrichment Classes, Theater, Park Days, Mom’s Night Out, Field Trips, Educational Activity Days, Sports, Art, Music and more. When you are a part of a homeschool group you are part of a community of families who encourage you along the way.
Q: Where do I find a curriculum and how do I know what curriculum to choose?
A: There are many curriculum choices available, Some are even free.
By Texas State Law, homeschool parents are responsible for choosing and pursuing a curriculum that covers the basics of reading, spelling, grammar, math and good citizenship.
Not all curriculum is the same and each curriculum choice can be used to cater to your child's learning style, interests and needs. This is one of the best things about homeschooling. You can customize your child's education, because not every child learns the same way. And because your home school is not regulated, your child is not required to take any State Testing.
Curriculum can be found at Homeschool Conventions, online and can even be bought, used or borrowed from fellow homeschoolers. Provided below are links to various websites and bookstores that carry homeschool curriculum and to local homeschool conventions that come to our area each year. Also included links to various companies that even rent out curriculum and curriculum that is free.
Mardel Christian Bookstore https://www.mardel.com
Rainbow Resource Center https://www.rainbowresource.com
Christian Bookstore https://www.christianbook.com
Home Educators Resource Lewisville (New and Used Curriculum) www.homeeducatorsresource.com
Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool (FREE) https://allinonehomeschool.com/
Yellow House Book Rental https://www.yellowhousebookrental.com/
Homeschool Conventions Links
Great Homeschool Conventions
Texas Home School Coalition
Q: What are learning styles?
A: Knowing the way your child learns is very helpful in determining and choosing curriculum.
Your child can definitely have more than one way of learning and it may differ per subject as well.
•Visual learners absorb new information best by seeing. (Textbooks, workbooks, DVD)
•Auditory learners learn best through the use of verbal communication. (Lecture, audiotapes, DVD, storytelling)
•Tactile/Kinesthetic learners benefit from hands-on learning. (Unit studies, manipulatives)
Provided below are links to various websites that can help you determine your child’s learning style.
Q: What are homeschool methods/approaches?
A: Every homeschool is unique! Most homeschoolers do not follow one style or method. In the beginning you may find that your routine is more structured, but over time you will become more flexible and relaxed. Some families stick to one method for every subject while others can have a different method for every subject. Here is a List of the Different Types of Homeschool Methods/Approaches along with the learning styles that coincide with each approach/method.
Different Types of Homeschool Methods/Approaches:
-Traditional: Workbook/Textbook Approach, Great for Visual and Auditory Learners
-Unity Study:Topical/Thematic Approach Covering Various Subjects,Great for Multi-Sensory Learners and Multiple *Children of Varying Ages Classical
-Classical:Learning that Coincides with the Child*s Cognitive Development, Great for Multi-Sensory Learners
-Technological: Computer or Internet-Based Approach ,Great for Visual Learners
-Charlotte Mason: Learning from Real-life Situations Approach, Great for Auditory and Kinesthetic Learners
-DVD: DVD Approach, Great for Visual Learners
Q: How do I withdraw from public to homeschool?
A: You are not legally required to register with your local school district or receive their permission to homeschool, but according to Texas Education Agency (TEA) policy you must officially withdraw your child(ren) from public school if they are already enrolled by sending a letter of intent.The date that you will begin homeschooling is now required by the TEA in order to withdraw a child from public school.
It is important to make certain that your students are withdrawn before homeschooling begins and that homeschooling begins as soon as your student is withdrawn in order to avoid the public school counting your student as absent and potentially filing truancy charges.It is important to note that you are not required to complete any requirements except to submit a valid notice of withdrawal. If the school subsequently contacts you and says you must do more (e.g., come to the school office, fill out a form, present curriculum for review), you are not required to comply.
Instead, respond by email or mail with a letter of assurance. The TEA has instructed school districts that such letters meet the guidelines of cooperation in compliance with compulsory attendance laws. Source: www.thsc.org
Q: Can my homeschool student receive special education services from our local public school?
A: Yes, state law enables homeschool students who are five years old or younger with special education needs to become eligible for an evaluation for special education services as long as the parent signs a consent to have his or her child evaluated.
State law requires that Texas public schools are required to provide some or all of the special needs services to homeschool students who become eligible to receive these services at the public school where they would normally attend.
The most common services provided that homeschool parents take advantage of are speech therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy or reading services. These services will be recommended in the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) after the evaluation is conducted with the child at the parent’s consent.
The goal for these services in the homeschool student’s IEP is the same as for a student who would be attending school in the district, which is to help the child advance to the “normal” functional level of his or her peers. Source: www.thsc.org
Q: Can parents work while homeschooling?
A: Yes! Many families successfully work full-time and homeschool their children. It does take some discipline, but it is certainly possible and legal.
If you have any other questions, this is a great link to help you learn more about the requirements to homeschool in the state of Texas.
Remnant Homeschoolers Connect Group