In 1988, the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed Act 169. This law amended the Pennsylvania School Code to allow parents or guardians to homeschool their children as an option to compulsory school attendance. This law specifies the requirements and responsibilities of the parents and the school district where the family lives.
This Home Education and Private Tutoring section of the website contains information relevant to parents and guardians, evaluators, private tutors, school districts, businesses and institutions of higher learning. Although sections of this website are specifically targeted to one of these audiences, all sections contain information that may be relevant to others.
Standardized Tests and Sample Affidavits
The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) has issued a Home Education Program Basic Education Circular (BEC) to provide supervisors of the home education programs with a list of nationally normed standardized tests, per the law, which may be used by those who do not wish to take advantage of the PSSA testing at their district schools.
The Home Education Program BEC may be accessed from the list of BECs.
Sample affidavits which may be used by the supervisor of the home education program for children at the elementary school level or secondary school level are an attachment to the BEC.
Students with Disabilities
There are additional requirements for homeschooling students who have been identified as handicapped per the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (Public Law 91-230, 20 U.S.C. § 1401 et seq.). These are found in the Exceptional Students section of the Home Education website.
Resources and Diplomas
This site includes Support Groups and Resources, which includes a list of national, state and regional organizations that provide a number of services to homeschool families. While PDE does not list individuals as resources, an organization may complete the Home Education Organization Request Form and return it for inclusion on the website. Regional support groups for parents of homeschoolers are particularly welcomed to the list because they link homeschool families together to share ideas, resources and activities.
Some organizations apply to PDE for recognition, using the Home Education Association Application for Recognition (PDF), so they may evaluate portfolios and issue homeschool diplomas that are recognized by PDE. These organizations are listed in the Diplomas section of the Home Education website.
Private tutoring is another option for satisfying compulsory school attendance requirements. For families interested in hiring a private tutor rather than having a parent-directed education for their children, we include a section on Private Tutors, along with the related laws and regulations.
Laws and Regulations
All laws and regulations referenced in this Home Education and Private Tutoring website are listed in the General Laws and Regulations section of the Home Education website.