Florida Homeschool Information
Homeschooling is legally defined in the state of Florida as “The sequentially progressive instruction of a student provided by his or her parent or guardian.” This means that you can substitute out classes but the bulk of the instruction must be given by the parent or guardian.
To homeschool legally, you have 6 responsibilities:
- Send a notice to your county to inform them that you are homeschooling:
- Maintain a 2-part portfolio of records:
- Part 1: A log made contemporaneously with instruction. That means document the activity when you do it in a log book, notebook, or lesson planner.
- Part 2: A portfolio, with samples of your student’s work showing progress from year’s start to year’s end. This should be by child, by subject, and can be a creative representation of your homeschooling life. It can include field trips documents, pictures, work samples, reading logs, and anything else that would give the reviewer a sample of your child’s work and progress. Your portfolio should not contain every paper your child has done, but should be organized.
- If you are asked by the county to do so, you must be able to show your portfolio to the superintendent with a 15 day written notice.
- You must submit an annual review. You have three options for an annual review, as described below:
- First, the annual review can be a portfolio review completed by a certified teacher. Seminole and Orange county residents must complete their applicable forms. When submitting a portfolio review, make sure you have a copy of the teacher’s certificate. Please note that you should keep a copy of the teacher’s certificate and the portfolio review for your records. When mailing this review to your county's homeschool office, you should send it via certified mail with signature (and, of course, include the receipt of mailing in your records).
Please note that BJU’s testing requirements are that an administrator need only be college educated. This does not meet the Florida state requirements. So, it is up to you to make sure the person administering your test is a certified teacher. Please understand that all Florida counties randomly check.
- Second, the annual review can be the results from a nationally normed test, such as the SAT or IOWA, that is administered by a certified teacher. If you choose this option, please note that the county requires you to submit a copy of the administering teacher's certification along with the test results. So, make sure you get a copy of the teacher’s certification when the tests are administered.
- Third, the annual review can be the results of your student taking the standardized test for his/her grade at your zoned public school. Please note that this includes the FCAT and PSAT.
- Finally, the annual review can be a psychological assessment.
- You must preserve each student’s portfolio (both parts) for two years.
- If you decide to terminate homeschooling, you must then notify the county as well within 30 days of the end of your homeschooling.
For more information about homeschooling legally, download FPEA's "Starting Point" guide to homeschooling.