Q: We are considering homeschooling our student(s), what now?
A: It is each family’s right to consider what form of schooling fits best for them. If a family decides to homeschool, it is their responsibility to research and purchase the curriculum that meets their needs.
Q: We have definitely decided to homeschool, what are the next steps?
A: If you have decided to homeschool, please contact/email our District Registrar at email@example.com. In your email, please indicate your student(s) name, ID#, and state that you are withdrawing your student(s) from the district in order to homeschool. Upon receipt of this email, your student(s) will be unenrolled from the district system and any schedules will be deleted.
Q: I have a high school student, will their homeschool credits be accepted at the high school if they return in the future?
A: Keep in mind that if a high school level student homeschools and then wants to return to Sycamore High School, they should be sure that the program they are using has the proper accreditation so that those credits count towards graduation requirements. Sycamore High School accepts credits from programs that are accredited by AdvancED/Cognia, which is the same accreditation that is used for public high schools. Online programs such as James Madison High School, Penn Foster, Pearson and APEX Virtual Learning School have this accreditation and we accept those credits. There are many other programs to consider so just be sure to check that their accreditation includes AdvancED/Cognia.
Q: What happens if my high schooler participates in a program that does not have accreditation with AdvancED/Cognia?
A: If students have a transcript from their time homeschooling/online learning from a non AdvancED/Cognia accredited program, families can then create their own homeschool transcript for that year, combine it with the credits that a student earns at SHS, and prove graduation requirements/apply to colleges with both of these documents. The difference is that although the student would be still able to attend graduation at SHS if they are enrolled their senior year, they would earn a certificate of attendance rather than a diploma if they have not earned all the required credits at SHS due to time in a non-accredited program.
Q: What happens if we decide to return to the district in the future?
A: In order to re-enroll a student, families would contact the District Registrar at firstname.lastname@example.org or (815) 899-8100 to enroll and show proof of residency. After enrolling a student, families would be directed to meet with the school to discuss next steps. At the high school level, transcripts would be evaluated to determine if credits from the homeschool program would be accepted. Placement tests may be given as well to determine future classes.
Q: Can my student(s) participate in sports, clubs, or activities if they homeschool?
A: IHSA has strict rules about participation in athletics. Students must be enrolled in and passing 5 classes at the school in order to participate in IHSA sports. Therefore, students who are homeschooling would not be eligible for sports. In order for a student to participate in clubs or extracurricular activities at the school, the board policy states that they must be enrolled and spend a minimum of ½ of their day in classes at the school. Elementary students interested in choir, band, or orchestra, please contact the building administrator for more information.
For more information from the IL State Board of Education (ISBE) on homeschooling, visit: https://www.isbe.net/Documents/ISBE-Home-School-FAQ.pdf