REVISED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
ON HOME INSTRUCTION
Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP)
35. Are parents required to submit more than a list of textbooks in the IHIP to comply with the requirements of subdivision (d) of Section 100.10?
The IHIP must include for each of the required courses either a list of syllabi, curriculum materials and textbooks to be used or a plan of instruction to be followed. A different alternative may be used for different subjects. While a list of textbooks may be submitted, it is reasonable for the district to require more than the name, publisher, copyright date and author's name if the district is not familiar with the textbook's content. If the district requests additional information beyond the list of textbooks, the parents may, at their option, submit either a written scope and sequence describing the text or a copy of the text for the district's review (which copy shall be promptly returned to the parents). The purpose of such review is not to compare the text with those employed by the district, but rather: 1) to insure that the parent is providing the mandated subjects for the grade level in question, and 2) to provide the district with more complete information to assist its review of quarterly reports and annual assessments.
36. When the IHIP is submitted by the parents, does the school district have the responsibility to make a subjective judgment of the substantial equivalency of the home instruction program?
No. The purpose of these regulations is to provide a basis for objective determinations of substantial equivalence. IHIP submissions are to be evaluated to determine compliance with subdivisions (d) and (e) of Section 100.10. Quarterly reports are to be evaluated to determine compliance with subdivision (g). Annual assessments must comply with the requirements of subdivision (h). A home instruction program that adheres to the standards of the regulations at each stage of the process should be deemed to be substantially equivalent.
37. Must the parents indicate on the IHIP what will be taught and the total time of instruction?
The IHIP must include a list of the syllabi, curriculum materials, or plan of instruction to be used in each of the subjects required for that grade level. The total number of hours of instruction per quarter must be
documented on the quarterly report. It is recommended that, in the secondary grades, hours per subject be included in each quarterly report.
38. When must a student begin to receive instruction?
A change in Education Law 3205, which became effective on July 26, 1993, clarifies the age at which a student is subject to compulsory education. The law now requires children who turn six on or before December 1 to receive instruction from the start of the school year in September of that year. Children who turn six after December 1 must begin to receive instruction no later than the first day of school the following September.
39. Must the IHIP for a six-year-old indicate that the instruction is on the first grade level?
No. As with any age, instruction should be geared to the level appropriate to the student's needs and previous level of achievement.
40. Are students instructed at home required to take a second language?
No. They are not required to take a second language, but they may choose to study a second language.
41. Is physical education required?
Yes. Every student must have a physical education program. Activities may differ but outcomes should be similar to those established for students in the public school.
42. Must the topics proposed for study in each subject correspond to the material covered in the public school curriculum?
While the subjects required by Law and Regulation must be taught, the course content may differ.
43. If a student reaches the maximum age for compulsory attendance during the school year, must the IHIP for that student cover the full year?
Yes. Students who turn 16 (or 17 in New York City) between July 1 and June 30 are of compulsory attendance age during the entire school year.
44. Is a district required to review the IHIP submitted for a student beyond compulsory attendance age?
45. Can a district require parents to provide more information on the IHIP than the Regulations of the Commissioner require?
No A district may require only that information set forth in subdivision (d) of Section 100.10 of the Regulations of the Commissioner.
46. May a superintendent find a program of home instruction deficient, if he/she concludes that the student needs socialization or interaction with other children?
No. This is not a basis for finding a program of home instruction deficient.
47. Must home instruction for a student of limited English proficiency include instruction in the English language?
Yes. Home instruction for such a student must include instruction in the English language.
48. Are parents instructing their children at home required to teach courses which involve education about substance abuse, AIDS, human sexuality and family planning?
Parents are required to provide health education at all grade levels. Section 804 of the Education Law requires that such health education include instruction to discourage the misuse and abuse of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs. Section 135.3(b) of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education requires that the elementary and secondary health education curriculum include age appropriate instruction concerning the nature, methods of transmission and methods of prevention of the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Parents must address the topic of AIDS as a part of the required health instruction at least once in grades K-6, once in grades 7-8 and once in grades 9-12. Parents may include instruction on human sexuality and family planning as part of their children's health education, but are not required to do so.
49. Must a district notify parents that the IHIP is in compliance with CR. 100.10?
Yes. The district is obligated to notify parents that the IHIP is in compliance. It is strongly recommended that such notification be in writing.
50. Must a board of education approve the IHIP?
No. The superintendent of schools is responsible for reviewing the IHIP and notifying the parents of its status.
51. When is the board of education involved in the process?
If the superintendent of schools determines that a revised IHIP is not in compliance and the parents contest that determination, the parents may meet with the board to present evidence of compliance. The board then makes its determination of compliance or noncompliance.
52. If the board finds that an IHIP is not in compliance, do the parents have the right to appeal?
Yes. The parents may appeal a determination noncompliance by the board to the Commissioner Education within 30 days of receiving notice of determination.
53. Must the parents of a student instructed at home file an IHIP with the district if the student is enrolled in a correspondence school?
Yes. The obligation to file an IHIP does not depend on the source of material used but rather on the location of the student's instruction. The board of education is responsible for ensuring that any student of compulsory age living within the district is receiving an adequate program of instruction. The parents and the district must
comply with C.R. 100.10 even if the supplier of the curriculum materials considers the student to be enrolled in its school or program.
54. Does the State Education Department approve programs of home instruction provided by correspondence schools?
No. The State Education Department does not perform this function. Correspondence
school materials for home instruction must be reviewed by the superintendent