Homeschooling Options in California

 Disclaimer: This is not intended to be legal advice.  I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information. If you would like legal advice on homeschooling please contact HSLDA. For more up-to-date and accurate information on homeschooling in California, please contact CHEA or PHEofCA.
 Homeschooling Options (1)

Click here for more information on California education laws and how they apply to homeschooling.

Four Options for Homeschooling in California

1. Start your own private school.  Parents can establish a private school in their home by filing a private school affidavit and having the appropriate records on file. This may seem difficult, but it is really very easy and allows parents the most freedom in choosing the best way to educate their child(ren) at home. Visit my Private Homeschooling Requirements page for more information.

2. Enroll your child in a Private School Satellite Program (PSP) offered by a private school. The private school may be  made up of all homeschooling families or may be part of a campus based private school. Some PSP’s merely file the affidavit and keep records required by law on a family’s behalf. Other PSP’s offer other services including help with scheduling, choosing curriculum, support groups, class days, field trips and sports. Visit these sites for a small sampling of PSP’s in California or San Diego County.

3. Private tutoring with a California credentialed teacher. Families may hire a tutor to educate their child at home. The teacher must hold a credential for the grade level being taught. Other requirements apply (see here). EC 48224

4. Enroll your child in a public charter school or Independent Study Program through a public school. Families who choose this option are entering into an agreement with the public school system and are under the authority of the public school system. Visit my charter school page for more information.

More detailed information about the four options for homeschooling in CA can be found here.

Additional Information on Your Options

My personal preference is for families to choose option 1 or 2. This allows parents more freedom in how they educate their children and the ability to incorporate Christian beliefs and values during the school day.

Because Charter Schools and Independent Study Programs are part of the public school system, a child enrolled in a home study program through one of these options (option 4) is considered a public school student and the student and parent (instructing the child) must abide by the laws listed below.

  •  The law clearly prohibits the use of public monies for the purchase of religious materials and it prohibits any type of religious instruction in all public schools, including charter schools.  Article 9, Section 8 of the California Constitution states, “No public money shall ever be appropriated for the support of any sectarian or denominational school, or any school not under the exclusive control of the officers of the public schools; nor shall any sectarian or denominational doctrine be taught, or instruction thereon be permitted, directly or indirectly, in any of the common schools of the State.”  Education Code 47605[d] states “a charter school shall be nonsectarian in its programs, admission policies, employment practices, and all other operations…”
  • SB 48 went in to effect on January 1, 2012 and requires all public schools, including alternative and charter schools, to have instruction in “the study of the role and contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans.” And prohibits “any matter reflecting adversely upon persons on the basis of….sexual orientation.” Click here to read CA Department of Education’s answers to FAQ on SB 48.

(Updated 12/24/15)