Truth About Homeschooling in VT – Vermont Homeschool Laws

By Dr. Jon

State laws change from time to time and though we try to keep the laws up-to-date at all times please check with the department of education for any changes that may have occurred.

It’s practical, safe and you can do it from home: homeschooling is increasingly popular educational alternative among many parents who wish to be more directly involved in their children’s education.

If you plan to do so yourself, you’re about to join a great community of fellow homeschoolers, always ready to offer advice and resources. We’ll show you how to start homeschooling in Vermont without too much effort. We’ll go through some of the main educational opportunities offered by The Green Mountain State, give you an introduction of the main homeschooling laws in Vermont, and point you to some great online homeschooling sites and communities that will help you homeschool in Vermont right away! Use the infographic and video below to create a homeschool that thrives.

Homeschooling in VT – Vermont Homeschool Laws

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The Green Mountain State

Vermont is a great place to start homeschooling your children. Whether you’re an art buff or a nature lover, the Green Mountain State has something just for you.

There are plenty of beautiful state parks for outdoor enthusiasts to explore – and there’s a spot for hiking, biking or boating fans alike. Walk through the meandering paths of the Jamaica State Park, hike through the beautiful Smugglers Notch State Park, or go boating on the Grand Isle State Park.

Art lovers will enjoy the many museums and galleries available in Vermont. Places such as the Bennington Museum, the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, or the Museum of Creative Process showcase beautiful art collections – both traditional and modern, and children will love light-painting in the Wonderfeet Kids Museum.

Vermont has a few history museums for those interested in the past – from the thematic Lincoln Family Home, in Manchester, to the more comprehensive Vermont Historical Society Museum, your little history fans will definitely find something interesting that’ll stir their interest.

Vermont Homeschool Laws

The first thing you need to do if you want to homeschool in Vermont is to send in an annual enrollment notice to the local commissioner. You’ll include information such as the children’s name, age, progress report for the previous year (if necessary), and a description of the curricula for the following school year, among others. Within two weeks, you’ll receive an acknowledgement from the local commissioner, either approving your enrollment request, or asking for more information, and setting up a hearing.

You don’t need any qualifications to homeschool, but there’s a relatively long list of compulsory subjects (you can find it here). Among these are reading, writing, mathematics, citizenship etc.

You need to have your children tested annually, in each area of study. There are three options available: standardized tests, portfolio reviews by a state certified teacher, and a report prepared by the parent accompanied by a student’s portfolio. The results of these tests need to be send in with the annual enrollment notice.

There’s no extra bookkeeping required, and there are also no obligations concerning the minimum amount of instruction hours.

Homeschooled children may enroll part-time in the local public school, and participate in extracurricular activities, but they won’t benefit from public school special needs services.

Vermont Homeschool Friendliness Grade

We’re giving Vermont a D when it comes to homeschool friendliness, especially because the enrollment notice is extremely detailed, and you may be required to go through a hearing before starting the school year. Compulsory year-round testing doesn’t help, either, especially considering that most states require homeschooled children to undergo standardized tests once every two years. However, serious homeschoolers have nothing to worry about, and the rest of the homeschool requirements aren’t really all that restrictive.

Conclusion

Though the homeschool requirements in Vermont may not be the most relaxed in the US, they’re not absurd by any means. In fact, if you follow them diligently, they’ll help you stay on top of your education planning, and offer your children the best education possible.

If you’ve got any questions regarding homeschooling in VT, get in touch with a homeschooling group near you, or contact us for more information – we’re always here to help you!

Resources

Here’s a selection of websites that will help you homeschool in Vermont:

http://www.hslda.org/hs/state/VT/ - the official HSLDA page has everything you need to know about VT homeschool laws, as well as plenty of local news and information

http://education.vermont.gov/vermont-schools/school-operations/home-study - the official webpage of the Vermont Agency of Education is a great place to find legal information, including an annual enrollment form

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