A new bill in the Kentucky House presents notable problems for Kentuckians interested in homeschooling.
House Bill 574 from Representative Chris Harris, D – Forest Hills, would add significant new state mandates on the shoulders of parents who decide to homeschool.
The bill requires:
- Parents to submit an affidavit attesting a homeschool student received 1,062 hours of instruction. This even though many homeschooling parents get more done in four hours a day than the public schools accomplish in seven or eight hours.
- Parents to submit a portfolio of student work to the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) annually.
- The KDE to review the portfolio to determine whether the student has achieved adequate academic growth.
- A remediation plan if a student has not achieved adequate academic growth.
- New administrative procedures for terminating homeschooling if the student has not achieved adequate academic growth after 24 months on the remediation plan.
Basically, items 1, 2 and 3 make the KDE the final arbiter of both the curriculum and performance standards homeschoolers must meet. In practical terms, this probably sets the stage for the department’s own standards – currently still based on the Common Core State Standards – to become the de facto mandate for homeschools, as well.
But, there are a whole lot of other issues with this bill.