Homeschooling in Florida is pretty easy - so get started by finding out all about Florida homeschool laws and requirements.
I have 2 children and have thoroughly enjoyed homeschooling since I started in 1994 when we lived in Connecticut.
Homeschools are on the rise and for good reason. Colleges are recognizing that students educated at home are generally well socialized and better at academics than their public school educated counterparts. It has also been found that homeschoolers are better citizens in terms of getting and holding down jobs, parenting, contributing to charities, and volunteering.
In 2006 we moved to Florida and I was pleased to see that we could continue our home education program without too many hassles.
The Florida Homeschool Requirements are these 3 items:
Scroll down to read more about each of these requirements ........ plus more information.
To begin homeschooling in Florida, you need to contact the school district of the county you live in within 30 days of your start date, and submit a notice of intent for students 6-16 years old.
In my case, I called the Home Education Office of the Lee County school district, and they sent me a packet with information, instructions, names of local homeschool groups and associations, along with the notice of intent.
You can also download the notice of intent, or contact:
The School District of Lee County
2855 Colonial Ave
Ft Myers, FL 33966
Then fill it out, send it in, and once you receive your Acknowledgement of Home Education Participation form, you are ready to begin!
You have the option of making a copy of your Acknowledgement and sending it to the Florida School Book Depository for textbooks and other materials:
Florida School Book Depository
PO Box 6578
Jacksonville, FL 32236
You may want to check out these online virtual schools:Florida Virtual School for Grades K-12
I used a lot of materials from the library to teach the elementary grades to my children.But, for middle and high school, I used, still use, and highly recommend the classic education principles and most of the curriculum suggestions from The Well-Trained Mind.
Laws for homeschooling in Florida require you to keep a portfolio of your child's work which includes:
The reason you need to make a portfolio is to have a record, and you may need it depending on the which evaluation method you choose.
What I do is prepare a big binder for the school year with separators between each subject. At the end of the school year, I prepare a sheet of paper with a list of subjects, curricula, books read, and extracurricular activities, that I put at the front of the binder.
I then take 3 sheets of school work from each subject, 1 from the beginning of the school year, 1 from the middle, and 1 from the end, and also put them at the front of the binder along with any artwork or projects in plastic sleeves.
That way the portfolio is separate from the year's schoolwork, yet the evaluator can see that a large body of work was completed for the year.
Keep the portfolio for 2 years and be prepared to submit it with a 15 days notice if necessary.
Okay, now you're ready for the next step.
Homeschooling in Florida also requires an evaluation of your child's school work. You have 4 options:
I chose the first option. I was fortunate to have a homeschooling neighbor who is also a certified teacher.
There are some fantastic opportunities that go along with homeschooling in Florida:
For more information about all the above programs and other homeschooling questions, go to Lee County Home Education Program.
Check out these homeschooling support groups so you can socialize with other homeschoolers, take your kids on group field trips, and share ideas and tips:
You may also want to check out the Home School Legal Defense Association, a Christian organization that offers free legal counsel and representation with homeschooling issues, homeschool help and information, all for a minimal cost in yearly dues.
Connected to HSLDA is The Homeschool Foundation which provides curriculum funds for widows and needy families.
And, let's not forget about my most favorite homeschooling in Florida opportunity .......... doing school at the beach!
My favorite book for homeschooling ideas is The Well-Trained Mind, which you can order from Amazon, their website, or from my favorite curriculum catalog, Rainbow Resource, along with other homeschool books and curricula.
What I liked about Well-Trained Mind is their classical approach, and curriculum ideas and schedules for pre-school through high school which made it easy for me to plan each school year quickly, and provided a scope and sequence for my girls' entire education at home.
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