Oklahoma offers a wide array of educational choices for families, including the option of homeschooling. Homeschooling allows parents to provide an education for their children that is tailored to their individual needs, values and interests.
With its flexible structure and the freedom it enables to control the course of the program, homeschooling may prove to be the best educational fit for some families. Here is an overview of what you need to know if considering enrolling your child into a homeschool program in Oklahoma.
What Are the Benefits of Homeschooling in Oklahoma?
There are several benefits to homeschooling in Oklahoma. First, there is more flexibility in terms of what a child learns compared to some more traditional educational settings.
Parents can choose topics and materials based on their child’s interests, whether that’s history, science, languages or the arts. Second, Oklahoma offers an exemption for homeschoolers from certain state-mandated standardized tests. This provides still more flexibility for parents, enabling them to teach their children according to their own criteria and goals.
Finally, homeschooling can create a stronger bond between parent and child as the parent is able to spend more time and be more involved.
What Are the Requirements for Homeschooling in Oklahoma?
Oklahoma does not have any laws that require parents to obtain permission before homeschooling their children. However, there are some requirements to ensure that homeschool children still receive an education that is held to a certain standard. Parents must provide written instruction, teach English, math and other spiritual and/or moral education, keep attendance records and ensure that their child takes an annual standardized test.
Depending on a child’s age, there are also certain other documents that must be filed with the district superintendent of the school board in the student’s county of residence, such as an affidavit of study, an amendment form mirroring the instruction prescribed by the district superintendent, a child’s transcript, and a letter of curriculum, among others. Finally, if a child is under the age of 7, they must also take part in an annual physical exam by a certified physician.
What Types of Resources Are Available for Homeschooling in Oklahoma?
Oklahoma has many organizations, groups and resources available for parents looking to homeschool their children. These resources range from private tutors or instructors, who may be available for certain topics for an additional fee, to free support centers and online support groups.
Additionally, many organizations offer a wide variety of online courses, from introduction to advanced level courses, that may be conducted either in-person or over the internet, depending on the provider. Finally, parents interested in homeschooling can access information and support through local libraries.
Is Homeschooling Right for My Child?
The decision to homeschool your child should depend on whether it is truly the best option for your child and family. As mentioned earlier, homeschooling in Oklahoma offers flexibility that may better suit some children’s learning styles and needs than more traditional models.
It also gives parents the opportunity to provide their children with a more personalized education that aligns with their values, interests and goals. However, if the parents’ own goals do not match the child’s, it may be best to enroll them in a traditional school. It is important to weigh all options, talk to as many people as possible, and make an informed, well-thought out decision.
Are There Violations or Penalties for Not Adhering to Homeschooling Requirements?
According to the state of Oklahoma, failing to meet homeschooling requirements such as providing timely paperwork or conducting an annual research may lead to a warning, citation or even criminal charges for the parents.
What Are the Exemptions for Homeschoolers from Standardized Tests?
Parents of students enrolled in a home-based education program are exempt from statewide testing. They are also exempt from any other assessment required by the school district
What Do I Need to Know About Withdrawing My Child from a School to Homeschool?
If you are planning to withdraw your child from their current school and to homeschool them, there are a few steps you need to take. First, you must officially withdraw your child from their enrolled school by providing the principal or superintendent with the required documents and forms.
After this, the principal is responsible for informing the state about the withdrawal and for accompanying the student until school personnel confirm that the parents have obtained the proper resources for homeschooling and that the student is being appropriately monitored.
What Documents and Forms Are Required for Homeschooling?
The documents and forms that are required for homeschooling in Oklahoma may vary, depending on the age of the child and the local school district. However, common documents that may need to be submitted to the school district include an affidavit of study, a letter of curriculum, an amendment form, an annual achievement form and a child’s transcript.
What Types of Tests Are Required?
Although homeschoolers in Oklahoma are exempt from taking statewide tests, they may still be required to take other assessments. Depending on the age of the student, parents may need to provide the following to their local school district: an annual assessment, portfolio review, evaluation from certified teachers, or other assessments that the district deem necessary.
Are Parents Required to Have a Teaching Credential or Qualifications for Homeschooling?
No, parents are not required to have a teaching credential or any other type of formal qualifications in order to homeschool their children in Oklahoma. However, students in Kindergarten through twelfth grade must be supervised and monitored by the parents on a daily basis.
What Are Some of the Homeschooling Organizations in Oklahoma?
There are many organizations in Oklahoma that mainly provide support and resources to homeschoolers. These organizations can also provide information and guidance on homeschool laws and regulations, and may organize homeschooling events, socials and field trips. These organizations include the Oklahoma Homeschool Connections, Oklahoma Home Educators Network, Greater Tulsa Home Educators Network and Oklahoma Home School Administrators.
Are Free Resources Available for Homeschoolers in Oklahoma?
Yes, there are free resources available for homeschoolers in Oklahoma, including local support centers, online support groups and online courses. Such free resources can help homeschoolers easily access materials that might be needed for certain topics, find tutors and instructors for areas where extra help is needed, and connect with other homeschooling families in their community and beyond.
Can My Child Participate in Extracurricular Activities and Sports While Homeschooling?
Yes, homeschoolers in Oklahoma may participate in extracurricular activities and sports, such as tennis, band, choir, etc. However, some activities may be subject to certain requirements. For example, if students want to participate in sports, they need to be equipped with a certificate of enrollment in a homeschool program, which they can acquire from their district superintendent.
Homeschooling in Oklahoma can be an excellent way to provide your child with an education catered to their needs, goals and interests. While the state does not have a law that requires parents to obtain permission before homeschooling their children, there are still certain requirements and guidelines that must be followed.
Fortunately, there are many resources available to assist parents with homeschooling, from support centers and online courses to local libraries and organizations. With careful consideration and the right resources, parents can build an individualized curriculum for their child that stands in line with the state’s requirements.