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South Dakota (SD) 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 Dakota:  "Parents or guardians desiring to educate their child at home must enroll their child in an alternative instruction program. Applications to the school district of residence must be filed yearly for all programs active and approved in the previous year. Before an alternative instruction program can commence, an application must be presented to the district administrative office and forwarded to the respective board of education for approval or disapproval. S.D. Codified Laws Ann § 13-27-3. Instructors are not required to be certified. The person providing the instruction must maintain records of student attendance and evidence showing academic progress. Alternative instruction programs are required to operate for a minimum of 175 days each school year. S.D. Codified Laws Ann § 13-27-3. Instruction must be directed toward a mastery of the English language. Math and reading/language arts are required curricular areas. The amount of time for each curricular area must be equivalent to the instructional time in the public schools. S.D. Codified Laws Ann. § 13-27-3. When requested, textbooks are required to be loaned to alternative instruction programs by the public school district where the program is located. S.D. Codified Laws Ann. § 13-27-3 Alternative education students in grades 2, 4, 8, and 11 must participate in a standardized testing program. S.D. Codified Laws Ann. § 13-27-3. The Secretary of the Department of Education and Cultural Affairs may inspect the attendance records and evidence showing academic progress for an alternative education program if he has probable cause to believe the program is not in compliance. Fourteen days written notice must be given. S.D. Codified Laws Ann. § 13-27-3." (Source:  "State Regulation of Private Schools," South Dakota, by the U.S. Department of Education Office of Non-Public Education (2000).)



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 Dakota (SD)
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