Legal Options for Homeschooling in Colorado
Colorado law provides three options for homeschooling your children.
- Under the Colorado Homeschool Law, you can file a Notice of Intent with a Colorado school district 14 days prior to beginning.
- Under the Colorado Non-Public School Law, you can enroll with a Colorado-based independent school (such as the CHEC Independent School) and follow that school’s requirements.
- Obtain a current Colorado teaching license. No reporting or testing requirements exist for a parent holding a current Colorado teaching license.
Colorado Law: Here’s a breakout of the differences between options 1 and 2.
|1. Homeschool Law (Notice of Intent)||2. Non-Public School Law (Independent School)|
|Basic info:||1. File a Notice of Intent with a Colorado school district 14 days prior to beginning.|
2. Follow the Homeschool Law requirements.
(Known as Non-Public Home-Based Education)
|1. Enroll in a Colorado-based Independent School
2. Follow that Independent School’s policies
Please Note: Each Independent School has its own policies. All policies listed here are those of the CHEC Independent School. Learn more about Independent Schools here.
|How to begin:||File a Notice of Intent (NOI) annually with the school district.||Enroll with the CHEC Independent School.|
|Deadline:||Families must submit an NOI at least 14 days prior to beginning homeschool program.||Enrollment is open from June through April 30th for each school year. Families may enroll anytime, and there is not a summer deadline for enrollment. However, to comply with the compulsory education law, we recommend applying for enrollment by August for the full school year. (If you apply after September, you will be considered a transfer/partial year enrollment.)|
|Policies:||Abide by the requirements of the Homeschool Law.||Abide by the policies of the CHEC Independent School. (You are NOT subject to the requirements of Homeschool Law.)|
View full information here: Homeschool Law, CHEC Independent School, or Non-Public School Law.
|Teacher requirements:||Parent, guardian, or adult relative is responsible to provide the teaching.||The CHEC Independent School requires a parent, legal guardian, or adult relative to provide at least 50% of their student’s education. Exceptions require Director approval. See policies for more information.|
|Compulsory attendance ages:||Students age 6 by August 1st (until they turn 16) must file a NOI annually. Note: under Homeschool Law, although you must file an NOI at age 6, teaching is not required until age 7.||Students age 6 by August 1st (until they turn 17) must be enrolled in the CHEC Independent School and follow its policies.|
|Attendance:||Student must be educated for 172 days (average of 4 hours a day).||Student must be educated for 172 days. No average requirement.|
|Record keeping:||Must be maintained permanently by the parent. Should include at least attendance date, test & evaluation results, and immunization records.||An attendance record must be maintained by the parent and submitted to the CHEC Independent School by August 31st. Records of subjects taught and curriculum used must be maintained by the parent. Immunization records are kept by the CHEC Independent School.|
|Assessment (testing/evaluation):||Student must be evaluated (via a test or by a qualified person) at 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th, and 11th grades. Test composite score must be above the 13th percentile. Evaluation must show sufficient academic progress according to their ability.||Student must be tested, evaluated, or parent-evaluated in odd calendar years while in the age range/grades 3-11. (See school policies for information on grade modifications and acceptable assessments.)|
|Submission of assessment (testing/evaluation) results:||Results must be submitted to the school district (where the NOI was submitted) OR to an independent or parochial school.||Results must be submitted to the CHEC Independent School.|
|Subjects:||Subjects must include at least:|
Communication skills of reading, writing, and speaking
|Subjects must include at least:
Communication skills of reading, writing, and speaking
Honor and use of the flag
|Curriculum:||Specific curriculum not required.||Specific curriculum not required.|
|Grade level assignment or changes:||Not required to submit a grade level with an NOI.||Grade assigned based on birthdate but can be modified by the parent. If grade changes during the year, inform the CHEC Independent School.|
|High School graduation:||Colorado does not have homeschool graduation requirements. Each high school (and therefore family) sets its own requirements based on post-high school plans (including college requirements). Learn more on our high school resources page.|
|Participation in sports/extracurricular:||Students have the right to participate in any extracurricular or interscholastic activities in the same school district the NOI was submitted OR a private school (subject to the private school’s discretion).||Varies on grade of student and local school district policies. (See full CHEC Independent School policies.)|
|Part-time public school programs:||Students may attend classes at a public school for a portion of the day, and the school district may count the student as included in their enrollment.||Students may participate as private school students as long as at least 50% of the core academic subjects are taught at home. (Must ensure the program doesn’t automatically file a Notice of Intent.)|
|Enrollment of a truant student:||See homeschool law for details.||Enrollment of a student who has been charged with truancy is considered on a case-by-case basis.|