South Carolina (SC) State - Homeschooling Laws and Regulations
Homeschooling is legal in every American state. The Department of Education states, "Parents in all 50 states and the District of Columbia have the option to home school their children" (Department of Education, NCES). School attendance is compulsory for all children; however, parents have the legal right to withdrawal their children from government schools to enroll them in qualified private schools or to educate their children at home. This is only proper considering the fact that the duty and the right to educate the next generation were appointed by God to parents even before God created governments.
Each state has laws that govern matters such as how parents are to declare their intention to homeschool and what topics must be included in your home-education program. Some states require periodic standardized tests and more formal records be maintained. One of the great benefits of homeschooling is the liberty of homeschooling parents to choose their own curriculum. GETTING STARTED CAN FEEL OVERWHELMING, BUT MULTITUDES OF PARENTS ARE HOMESCHOOLING AND SO CAN YOU! It is my pleasure to help your research efforts. Below are links to key government and non-government pages.
South Carolina: "Parents or guardians may teach their children at home if the instruction is approved by the district board of trustees in the district in which the child resides. Home school programs that meet the following standards will be approved: The parent holds at least a high school diploma or the equivalent GED certificate and attains a passing score on the basic skills examination or has earned a baccalaureate degree; The instructional day is at least four and one-half hours, excluding lunch and recesses, and the instructional year is at least 180 days; The curriculum includes, but is not limited to, the basic instructional areas of reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies and, in grades 7 through 12, composition and literature; As evidence that a student is receiving regular instruction, the parent shall maintain the following records for inspection upon reasonable notice by a representative of the school district: a plan book, diary, or other written record indicating subjects taught and activities in which the parent and student engage; a portfolio of samples of the student's work; and a record of evaluations of the student's academic progress; The student must have access to library facilities; Students must participate in the annual statewide testing program and the Basic Skills Assessment Program approved by the State Board of Education for their appropriate grade level; and The parent must agree in writing to hold the district, the district board of trustees and the district's employees harmless for any educational deficiencies of the student sustained as a result of home instruction. S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-40 (A). Should a student in a home schooling program score below the test requirements of the promotion standards prescribed for public school students by the State Board of Education for one year, the district board of trustees shall decide whether or not the student shall receive appropriate instructional placement in the public school, special services as a handicapped student, or home schooling with an instructional support system at parental expense. The right of a parent to enroll his child in a private or parochial school as provided in S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-10(A) is unaffected by this provision. S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-40 (D). A parent or guardian denied permission by a district board of trustees to begin or continue a program of home instruction may appeal that decision to the State Board of Education. S.C. Code of Reg. R. 43-246. In lieu of the requirements of S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-40, parents or guardians may teach their children at home if the instruction is conducted under the auspices of the South Carolina Association of Independent Home Schools. Bona fide membership and continuing compliance with the academic standards of South Carolina Association of Independent Home Schools exempts the home school from the further requirements of S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-40. The State Department of Education shall conduct annually a review of the association standards to insure that requirements of the association, at a minimum, include a) a parent must hold at least a high school diploma or the equivalent GED certificate; b) the instructional year is at least 180 days; and c) the curriculum includes, but is not limited to, the basic instructional areas of reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies, and in grades 7 through 12, composition and literature. S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-45. In lieu of the requirements of S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-40 or § 59-65-45, parents or guardians may teach their children at home if the instruction is conducted under the auspices of an association for home schools which has no fewer than 50 members and meets the following requirements, determined by the State Department of Education through an annual review of the association: a) a parent must hold at least a high school diploma or the equivalent GED certificate; b) the instructional year is at least 180 days; c) the curriculum includes, but is not limited to, the basic instructional areas of reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies, and in grades 7 through 12, composition and literature; and d) educational records maintained by the parent-teacher. S.C. Code Ann. § 59-65-47." (Source: "State Regulation of Private Schools," South Carolina, by the U.S. Department of Education Office of Non-Public Education (2000).)
LINKS TO HELPFUL SITES
Disclaimer: Balancing the Sword makes no claims about the timeliness nor the completeness of the links or legal information posted. These homeschooling laws and legal information are being provided free of charge. Postings of rules and regulations are subject to change. Seek the advice of other home-educating parents or homeschooling organizations in your area for more help or contact your county superintendent of schools. Plan to file a Notice of Intent to homeschool with your county superintendent or child's current principal. (This document may also be known as an Affidavit of Intent, a Letter of Intent, a Notification of Intent, or a Declaration of Intent. Sample from Tennessee.)
Homeschooling Conventions in South Carolina (SC)