Homeschooling in Maryland

State Laws

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Maryland Laws Regulating Home Education
 Summaries and Explanations of Maryland Homeschooling Laws
 Maryland Statutes
 Case Law & Legal Opinions

Summaries and Explanations of Maryland Homeschooling Laws Back to Top
Homeschooling FAQ for Unschoolers in Maryland
This summary of the homeschool laws and climate in Maryland is geared towards unschoolers.
Maryland Home School Laws from HSLDA
HSLDA
The Home School Legal Defense Association provides a brief summary of the homeschooling laws in Maryland. Includes a link to a legal analysis of laws relating to homeschooling in Maryland.
Nonpublic Schools: Home Instruction Fact Sheet
MSDE
This fact sheet regarding home instruction in Maryland is provided by the Maryland State Department of Education.
The Legalities of Homeschooling in Maryland
Here you will find information any current legislation that may affect homeschool environment in Maryland. Also includes registration and homeschool information by county.

Maryland Statutes Back to Top
§ 7-301. Attendance and Discipline of Students.
a) (1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, each child who resides in this State and is 5 years old or older and under 16 shall attend a public school regularly during the entire school year unless the child is otherwise receiving regular, thorough instruction during the school year in the studies usually taught in the public schools to children of the same age ...
13A.10.01.01 Home Instruction Program.
A. Purpose. The purpose of this regulation is to establish a procedure to be used by the superintendent of each local school system to determine if a child participating in a home instruction program is receiving regular, thorough instruction during the school year in the studies usually taught in the public schools to children of the same age. B. Written Agreement. (1) A parent or guardian who chooses to teach his or her child at home shall initially sign a statement on a form prescribed by the State Department of Education which: (a) Indicates consent to the requirements set forth in §§C, D, and E of this regulation; and (b) Shall be submitted to the local superintendent at least 15 days before the beginning of a home instruction program. (2) Annual Verification. Annually thereafter, before the beginning of the school year, a parent or guardian shall verify the continuation of home schooling for his or her child with the local school superintendent or with the supervising nonpublic school or institution described in Regulation .05 of this chapter. (3) Change in Status. A parent or guardian shall notify the local school superintendent or the supervising nonpublic school or institution described in Regulation .05 of this chapter if a change occurs in the home school status of a child during the school year. C. Instruction Program. The home instruction program shall: (1) Provide regular, thorough instruction in the studies usually taught in the public schools to children of the same age; (2) Include instruction in English, mathematics, science, social studies, art, music, health, and physical education; and (3) Take place on a regular basis during the school year and be of sufficient duration to implement the instruction program. D. Educational Materials. A parent or guardian who chooses to teach a child at home shall maintain a portfolio of materials which: (1) Demonstrates the parent or guardian is providing regular, thorough instruction during the school year in the areas specified in §C(1) and (2); (2) Includes relevant materials, such as instructional materials, reading materials, and examples of the child's writings, worksheets, workbooks, creative materials, and tests; (3) Shall be reviewed by the local superintendent or the superintendent's designee at the conclusion of each semester of the local school system at such times as are mutually agreeable to the local superintendent or designee and the parent or guardian. E. A parent or guardian shall agree to permit a representative of a local school system to review the portfolio of educational materials, discuss the instructional program, and observe instruction provided that all of the following requirements are met: (1) The review is at a time and place mutually agreeable to the representative of the local school system and the parent or guardian; (2) The purpose of the review is to ensure that the child is receiving regular, thorough instruction as set forth in §C; (3) There are not more than three reviews during a school year. F. Additional Requirements. A local school system may not impose additional requirements for home instruction programs other than those in these regulations.
13A.10.01.02 Voluntary Participation in Standardized Testing.
Upon request of a parent or guardian, a child receiving home instruction may participate in the regularly scheduled standardized testing programs that are administered in the public school the child is eligible to attend.
13A.10.01.03 Noncompliance with Requirements.
A. Failure to Consent. If a parent or guardian does not agree to the requirements of Regulation .01B, C, and D, above, a child shall be enrolled promptly in a public school or nonpublic school as defined in COMAR 13A.09.09.02B(9). B. Deficiencies in the Program. If a local superintendent determines on the review of the home instruction program or inspection of the portfolio that a child is not receiving a regular, thorough instruction program in conformity with Regulation .01C and D, the local superintendent shall notify the parent or guardian in writing of any deficiencies in the program. The following apply: (1) Within 30 days of receipt of notification of any deficiencies, the parent or guardian shall provide evidence to the local superintendent that the deficiency has been or is being corrected. (2) If a local superintendent determines there is not a satisfactory plan to correct a deficiency or if a deficiency is not corrected, a child shall be enrolled promptly in a public school or a nonpublic school as defined in COMAR 13A.09.09.02B(4)(a).
13A.10.01.04 Placement in Public School.
Upon application of a child for admission to a public school from a home instruction program, the local superintendent shall determine by an evaluation the placement of the child and any credits to be awarded toward high school graduation. The evaluation may include administration of standardized tests and examinations and interviews with the child.
13A.10.01.05 Home Instruction Under Supervision of Nonpublic School.
A. A parent or guardian may provide instruction for a child at home without compliance with the requirements of this regulation, other than the requirements of Regulations .01B(1)(b) and .04 of this chapter, if that instruction is offered through correspondence courses and is under the supervision of a: (1) School or institution offering an educational program operated by a bona fide church organization, and the supervision includes at a minimum all of the following components: (a) Preenrollment conferences with parents or guardians, (b) Textbooks, lesson materials, and other instructional materials or equipment designed to be used independently by the pupil at a site other than a school, (c) Annual visits by supervisory personnel to the site where the pupil is receiving instruction, and (d) Conferences with parents or guardians at appropriate intervals during the period of enrollment; or (2) Nonpublic school with a certificate of approval from the State Board of Education, and the supervision includes at a minimum all of the following components: (a) Textbooks, lesson materials, and other instructional materials or equipment designed to be used independently by the pupil at a site other than a school, and (b) Assignment of a school-based teacher to assist the home teacher in using the correspondence courses and to assist the pupil by issuing progress reports, marking papers, and grading tests. B. Annual Verification. The supervising nonpublic school or institution described in §A of this regulation annually shall: (1) Verify with the local school superintendent the identification of home schooled students whose instruction is continuing under its supervision; (2) Notify the local school superintendent of the identification of home schooled students whose instruction is newly added to its supervision; and (3) Provide the local school superintendent with the identification of home schooled students whose instruction is no longer under its supervision. C. Change in Status. The supervising nonpublic school or institution described in §A of this regulation shall notify the local school superintendent if a change occurs in the status of a home schooled student whose instruction was under its supervision during the school year.

Case Law & Legal Opinions Back to Top
Pierce v. Society of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary
In Pierce v. Society of the Sisters, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that "the fundamental theory of liberty upon which all governments of this Union repose excludes any general power of the state to standardize its children by forcing them to accept instruction from public teachers only. The child is not the creature of the state."


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