May 29, 2013

Letter of Intent to Home School: New York State

After we decided to give home schooling a shot, I spent the majority of time researching the ins and outs, dos and don'ts, rules and regulations for home schooling in New York state.  I'm paranoid of not covering all my bases and having to battle with our local school Superintendent over something little that I forgot to turn in.

I gleaned a lot of information from four main sources:  Cityschooling, a blog by a New York City home schooling mom who's been at it for many years; The Journey Mom, the website of another seasoned home schooling mom; the Home School Legal Defense Association; and the New York State Dept. of Education home education regulations, found online.

Many other internet resources assisted my research, too, but those are the main treasure troves of information that I found most beneficial.

Since this blog is about my family's home schooling journey, I thought I would include samples of the documents New York State requires home schoolers submit, beginning with the Letter of Intent to Home School (LOI).

In New York State, home schooling parents must notify the school, in writing, of their intent to home school their children no later than July 1st of each year.  Yes, it must be done each year.  But, don't worry.  It's super simple. Below is the letter I submit to our Superintendent: 

        John and Jane Doe
             123 Linwood Ave.
             Schoolville, NY  12345


June 25, 2012

Maxine Delevan, Superintendent
Schoolville Central School
12 West Main St.

Schoolville, NY  12345


Dear Ms. Delevan,

We are sending this letter of intent to home school as required in Section 100.10 of the Regulations of the New York State Commissioner of Education.

We intend to home school our son, Jonnie A. Doe, who will be entering grade 5, for the
2012-2013 school year.


Sincerely,


Jane Doe
 
Within 10 days of receiving your LOI, your school district must send you a copy of the State home instruction regulations and a form on which to submit your Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP), which sounds scary, but if you know the regulations and do your homework, it can be simple.  I'll talk more about the IHIP in a separate post.

So there you have it.  The LOI.  Easy peasy.

If you have any questions about this, please feel free to leave them in the comments.

Coming up... Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP): New York State
 

18 comments:

  1. What if you decide to preschool halfway through a school year? Can you?

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    1. Sarah, here is what the NYS regulations state: "Parents who determine to commence home instruction after the start of the school year, or who establish residence in the school district after the start of the school year, shall provide written notice of their intention to educate their child at home within 14 days following the commencement of home instruction within the school district." So, you can begin homeschooling at any time, but you have to submit your Letter of Intent within 14 days. I would suggest you submit it the very day you remove your child from public school, so as to avoid any difficulties. Also, my apologies for such a late response. My "reply" button has been missing in action for quite some time, and I just today figured out how to get it back.

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    2. Do I need to send something in to the actual school? Saying that I am taking him out. Or just the letter of intent, to the school board?

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    3. Rachel, you'll need to send your Letter of Intent directly to your school's Superintendent, not to the school board.

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  2. Ugh..auto correct...I meant "home school" not preschool. Thanks!

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  3. I have a daughter in first grade, and I've already decided to home school her for second grade. Though at this time she only has two months left of school I feel as though it might be best to do it sooner as it seems she is not being taught all that she needs to know and hasn't been. Considering it's so late in the school year (I was told I can pull her out at any time as long as I provide the LOI) would it be possible to teach her what she needs to know in time. Also whether the IHIP may be different as it would be really only for one quarter Im sure.

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    1. Jessica, is it possible to teach her what she needs to know in 2 months? I suppose that depends on what you believe she needs to know. The thing is, you don't need to stick to the 2 months. The beauty of home schooling is in its flexibility. You can school during the summer. And, if you feel she's still not "caught up", just catch up next school year. You'll be surprised how much you can get done in a much shorter period of time than what occurs in public schools.

      As far as the letter of intent is concerned, it doesn't matter if it's typewritten or handwritten, however, typewritten just feels more official.

      Also, my apologies for such a late response. My "reply" button has been missing in action for quite some time, and I just today figured out how to get it back.

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  4. Also I was wondering if it matters if the letter of intent is printed on the computer or handwritten? Thank you.

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  5. How do I write the letter of intent if I plan to start school for my kids on Nov. 15, three months after school has started?

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    1. Dear anonymous reader: your letter of intent will be the same no matter what time of the year you are beginning your home schooling adventure. Perhaps include a sentence indicating the date on which you will be removing your kids, though. Good luck!

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  6. School is starting tomorrow and we've decided through much prayer that our second grader should be homeschooled this year. I am trying to find our superintendents email to send him the LOI that way but I'm not getting anywhere and nobody at the school is answering phone calls, i thought perhaps the teachers would be in today.. getting nervous!

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    1. If you're unable to find the email, you should probably snail mail your LOI right away. Send it certified mail with signature required.

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  7. Nice blog about the construction plan and the points which are described are also interesting to read.school classes

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    1. Thanks for the link, Audrey. I haven't come across that before, but I'll be taking a look at it. Have a great Thanksgiving!

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  8. Are IHIP's due by July 1st as well?

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  9. No. Your IHIP is due within 4 weeks of receiving notification from your school that they received your LOI, or by August 15th, whichever is later.

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  10. What do you do if you never get a response and IHIP form after submitting LOOK? It's been 10 business days and I have yet to receive anything after my hand delivered LOI

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    1. Personally, I would just go ahead and submit my IHIP regardless. My rule of thumb (not legal advice, but just my take on it) is that no response is the same as approval. And since you don't have to use their forms, you can create your own and then submit it. Not much they can do, since they have technically broken the law by not responding within the required number of days.

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