Idaho Homeschool Law
Idaho law does not require any notification in order to begin or continue homeschooling. No test scores or work samples need to be filed. However, if your child is already enrolled in an Idaho public school, best practice is to notify the school in writing that you intend to provide his or her instruction at home. This will help to avoid the appearance and/or accusation of truancy. You may withdraw from public school at any time. You are not required to provide any information about what curriculum you intend to use, your education level or teaching experience, or anything else about your home or homeschool. In order to preserve the minimal requirements we have in Idaho, be careful to avoid providing more information than that which is required by law.
Idaho law does not include government oversight requirements for privately homeschooling parents. Neither the Idaho Department of Education nor the local school district have the authority to evaluate or approve anything about your homeschool. As the parents or guardians, you assume sole responsibility for the funding, administration, and teaching in your homeschool. You are free to operate your homeschool with the curriculum, schedule, and style that most fits your family. Remember that you do not have to conform to expectations others may have about what home education should look like. In fact, homeschool leaders in Idaho worked with the Idaho Dept. of Health and Welfare to establish guidelines that will help social workers avoid making false assumptions about homeschoolers.
Obtaining a GED is neither necessary nor recommended. For some post-high school tracks, such as military enlistment, having a GED can actually be a detriment. Your high school student is a bonafide high school graduate when they have met your requirements, and to have them get a GED is stating that homeschool was not sufficient or complete. You will need to check with individual colleges your student may be interested in to find further entrance requirements, such as SAT or ACT test scores.
Part-Time Public School Participation
Idaho law allows public school districts to require homeschool students to meet the same standards required of public school students. This means homeschool families will come under regulation and oversight not otherwise required. Homeschool families will do well to consider private alternatives for their students. The homeschool community in Idaho has a broad variety of opportunities from private sources, including sports, dance, theater, science, computer programming, and much more!
According to the Idaho State Department of Education, nonpublic school students may not use the dual enrollment statute to receive special education services.
Homeschool families should recognize that a custom education at home will be able to meet the needs of all students, including disabled and gifted students, far better than public schools will. Loving parents will be able to know their students best, and will be able to set a pace and choose materials that strengthen any weak areas, as well as challenge gifted students to grow to their potential.
Driver's License Requirements
Virtual Charter Schools
Parents are free to homeschool without notifying the state, and without being regulated. Homeschool parents are free to school on their own schedule, select their own curriculum, use faith-based materials, set their own graduation requirements, and customize to both disabled and gifted students. With such tremendous freedom, there is much to lose! Each year during Idaho’s legislative session, from January through April, you have the opportunity and responsibility to know who your legislators are, and to follow the bills they introduce. Idaho legislators value the support of homeschool families, and we have a history of making our voices heard!