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How to Begin Homeschooling in Illinois
by Phyllis Smith Asinyanbi
1/12/2012 / Education
The state of Illinois does not require you to notify your school district when you decide to homeschool, and following Illinois homeschooling laws is simple. There is no specific home school statute in Illinois, but you can legally homeschool, because there is an alternative home school statute. The Home School Legal Defense Association's (HSLDA) website has credible information on homeschooling. You will find state homeschool resources here, and Illinois law states the following:
"If a child is 'attending a private or a parochial school where children are taught the branches of education taught to children of corresponding age and grade in public schools, and where the instruction of the child in the branches of education is in the English language' the child shall not be required to attend public school and the child is in compliance with Illinois compulsory attendance law." Home schools that met these two requirements are considered legal private schools (Illinois law: 105 ILCS 5/26-1).
Although both the HSLDA and Homeschool Legal Advantage (HLA) have summaries of homeschooling laws on their site, it would prove helpful to find a copy of the Illinois homeschooling law in your local library. If you find the Illinois homeschooling law on the internet, be certain that it is the actual law and that the site is a credible one. What you will find on both the HSLDA and the Homeschool Legal Advantage (HLA) websites are summaries of the law, but it is their interpretationnot the actual law. After you read the law, then you should read the HSLDA's and the HLA's interpretations.
If your child is enrolled in school, and you decide to homeschool, you should write a letter to the school principal, so school officials will not assume he is a truant. However, if your child has never attended school, you do not have to inform any one that you are homeschooling him.
What you need to know has been outlined here. There are no heavy duty rules or regulations, and no standardized tests or teacher certifications are required. Now that you know the law, you can decide which curriculum you will use and begin to homeschool!
Phyllis L. Smith Asinyanbi is a writer. Her areas of expertise are Christianity, education and autism. Her articles have been featured on Examiner.com and the Yahoo Contributor Network. Lifelong learning is her motto, and she enjoys sharing her knowledge with others.
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