Wisconsin Homeschooling Laws
Homeschools are categorized as home based private schools. To legally homeschool in Wisconsin one needs to:
1. Submit a report every year
2. Have private control of the homeschool
3. Provide instruction in mandatory subjects
4. Teach for the required amount of time
5. Provide private or church based instruction as the main objective of the homeschool
6. Advance the curriculum concepts to be more complex
Every child between 6 and 18 years is required to attend school. Homeschooling in this state allows parents to create their own program and choose the curriculum to be used that aligns with the needs of the student. Homeschoolers are allowed to take part in extra-curricular activities such as sports and may attend 2 classes in a semester in any public school.
This page provides information on the laws regulating homeschools including:
· Requirements to Homeschool in Wisconsin
· File a Notice of Intention to Homeschool
· Recordkeeping for Homeschoolers in Wisconsin
· Requirements for Graduation
· Switching from Homeschool to Public School
*This information is by no means intended as legal advice; its purpose is merely informational. It is each parent’s responsibility to get informed and understand the applicable homeschooling laws which regulate homeschooling in his or her state.
Requirements and Laws on Homeschooling in Wisconsin
To homeschool in Wisconsin, homeschooling families are required to:
1. Submit an annual notice of intention to homeschool in Wisconsin via the website of public instruction by 15th October. The form is referred to as a homeschool enrollment report PI-1206.
2. Provide adequate instruction in the following subjects: language arts, reading, science, mathematics, health and social studies.
3. Teach for at least 875 hours in a school year for every child in the homeschool who is between 6 and 18 years. (A school year runs from 1st July to 30th June of the following year).
4. Provide instruction as the main purpose of the homeschool. Must be private education or religious based instruction.
5. Have private control of the homeschool. No public entity can operate a homeschool.
The department of public instruction in Wisconsin allows homeschoolers to:
1. Take part in sports if they wish to, as well as extracurricular activities.
2. Attend 2 classes per semester at a public school so long as all the requirements have been observed according to the law on part-time attendance.
Notice of Intent to Homeschool in Wisconsin
The form used to notify the department of your intention to homeschool is the Homeschool Enrollment Report PI-1206 submitted every year by 15th October. The notice must have the following information:
· The # of homeschoolers
· A statement of the main objective of the homeschool which is to provide religious based or private instruction
· A declaration that you privately control the homeschool
· A declaration that every child in the homeschool will receive at least 875 hours of instruction
· A statement indicating you intend to provide adequate sequential instruction for every child between 6 and 18 years in health, science, math, reading, language arts and social studies
A sample form of the notice is easily accessible at the department of public instruction website.
Recordkeeping for Homeschoolers in Wisconsin
In as much as it is not a requirement by law to maintain records, it is a good idea to create a homeschool portfolio which is beneficial when creating homeschool transcripts, returning to public or private school after homeschooling, applying to colleges, universities, and workplaces, as well as the military and for other social security benefits. It also serves as a keepsake for the moments spent together with students throughout the years. Some of the things parents should include in the homeschool portfolio are:
· The books read during the homeschool program
· Work samples of the student including essays and handwriting
· A summary of work completed in every grade level, quizzes and tests takes as well as the scores of those tests
· Transcripts for high school students
· Any other relevant document that the state may request, such as attendance records, medical records of the studentLernsys Homeschooling makes it easy to keep a summary of the curriculum used including grades, topics covered, quiz and test scores, teacher credentials, etc.
Requirements for Graduation in Wisconsin
Homeschool parents in Wisconsin are free to set the graduation requirements for their student. Parents also determine if and when their student will graduate and are also able to award a high school diploma under their own terms. Parents are advised to consult with colleges the student may be interested in to know the requirements the child must meet so as to align the homeschool goals and curriculum with those requirements.
The chart below shows the comparison between graduation requirements in public school and homeschool in Wisconsin.
Diploma requirements in Wisconsin
High schoolers in Wisconsin must have 22 credits to graduate. The coursework subjects include math, English, science, social studies, physical education, civics, and electives. Other districts may require students to have done some community service.
Parents in Wisconsin have the liberty to determine when their student will graduate. They then proceed to award the high school diploma under their own terms.
|Testing requirements in Wisconsin||High schoolers must pass the civics test administered by the district and the ACT in math to graduate.||
There is no law in Wisconsin that compels or forces homeschoolers to undertake a test as a requirement in order to graduate high school.
Wisconsin high school transcripts
The schools make transcripts for their students. Those who wish to have a copy must request the school for the same. Other districts provide online request forms at a fee for every item you wish to have.
Parents in Wisconsin can create the homeschoolers’ transcripts which may include information they considered relevant to institutions the homeschoolers may intend to apply to. This may include schools, colleges, workplace organizations, or the military.
High school course credits in Wisconsin
|Students who wish to graduate must have 4 credits in English, 3 credits in science, 3 credits in math, 3 credits in social studies, 0.5 credits in health, 1.5 credits in physical education, a course in civics and electives which vary in credits.||
Many parents in Wisconsin choose to specify or assign academic credits to the courses taken during the homeschooling period as this may aid during the transcript creation process.
Eligibility for GED in Wisconsin
Students who are 18.5 years and above must show proof of age and that their residency in the state for the last 10 days to sit for the GED. One must apply by filing an application form at first meeting and paying the credential and exam fees.
Homeschoolers in Wisconsin are eligible if the meet the same criteria as public school students.
Homeschool High School Transcript Template
Track your homeschooler’s credits, courses, and accomplishments with this free homeschool high school transcript template.
Switching from Homeschooling to Public School in Wisconsin
Every district in Wisconsin has different rules and guidelines in enrolling students from homeschools. It is the duty of every parent to inquire from the school the requirements they must meet to have their students enrolled in that particular school.
If the decision to stop homeschooling is made in the middle of an academic year, the parent can either choose to:
1. Return to the website where you filed your notice of intent and change the numbers on enrollment (PI-1206 (HOMER) online page).
2. Contact the department of public instruction (School Management Services Team at WPI) to inform them of your decision to stop homeschooling your student.
3. Allow the district school to place the student at his/her appropriate level (after the the PI-1206 is submitted) and decide the homeschool credits that will be transferred. Parents are advised to inquire from the school district they intend to enroll their child on the policies guiding the admission of new students
Lernsys Homeschooling makes it easy to keep a summary of the curriculum used including grades, topics covered, quiz and test scores, teacher credentials, etc.
Additional Resources Related to Homeschooling in Wisconsin
Have other questions about homeschooling in Wisconsin? You may find the following pages helpful.