Understanding Homeschool Assessments in Ohio

What is expected?

“As a moderately-regulated state, Ohio has some specific requirements for home education; one of those is annual assessment of students’ progress.”

The Ohio regulations state, “The parent shall send to the superintendent an academic assessment report for the previous school year at the time of supplying subsequent notification.”

Who notifies?

* If this is your first year homeschooling, you don’t need to provide an           assessment report.

* If you homeschooled for the year but did not notify because your child was not     “school age”, you don’t need to provide an assessment report.

* If you notified last year (even though your child was not yet “school age”) you     need to provide an assessment for that child.

 

Homeschool Regulations for Assessments:


Ohio Regulations 3301-34-04 states…


(A) The parent(s) shall send to the superintendent an academic assessment report of the child for the previous school year at the time of supplying subsequent notification.

(B) The academic assessment report shall include one of the following:

     (1) Results of a nationally normed, standardized achievement test.

         (a) Such test shall be administered by:
              (i) A licensed or certified teacher; or
              (ii) Another person mutually agreed upon by the parent(s) and the superintendent; or
              (iii) A person duly authorized by the publisher of the test.

         (b) Results should demonstrate reasonable proficiency as compared to other children in the district at the same grade level. Any child that has a composite score at or above the twenty-fifth percentile shall be deemed to be performing at a level of reasonable proficiency.

      (2) A written narrative indicating that a portfolio of samples of the child’s work has been reviewed and that the child’s academic progress for the year is in accordance with the child’s abilities.

          (a) The written narrative shall be prepared by:
             (i) A licensed or certified teacher; or
             (ii) Other person mutually agreed upon by the parent(s) and the superintendent.

          (b) The parent(s) shall be responsible for the payment of fees charged for preparation of the        narrative.

      (3) An alternative academic assessment of the child’s proficiency mutually agreed upon by the parent and the superintendent.

(C) If the parent(s) chooses to have the standardized testing conducted as part of the school district scheduled testing program, there shall be no cost to the parent(s). The time and location for testing shall be established by the school district.

(D) If the parent(s) chooses to have the standardized testing conducted privately, the parent(s) shall pay for the testing. The time and location for testing shall be established by the parent(s).

What are the Three Options for Assessment in Ohio?

Standardized Test

Many families choose to have their child/children take nationally-normed, standardized tests each year. Your child’s composite score is the only score required to be reported. It must be at or above the 25th percentile. If test scores do not meet this criteria, then choose Option #2 or #3.

The traditional versions of college board ACT and SAT tests do qualify as a nationally-normed standardized test. 

Written Narrative/Portfolio Review

A written narrative/portfolio review can be done by:

(i) a licensed or certified teacher, holding a valid Ohio teaching certificate (excluding the non- tax certificate issued under Ohio Revised Code 3301.071); or
(ii) another person mutually agreed upon by the parent(s) and the superintendent.

Alternative Academic Assessment

Option #3 can be many different things. The key is that you and the superintendent must agree before this alternative assessment is submitted. Here are a couple of the more common alternative academic assessments options that have been used by parents in Ohio.

Perhaps you are using a program that issues a final report card. If you ask ahead of time, the superintendent may accept this “report card” as your academic assessment.

If your student is participating in a mentorship program, a letter from the child’s mentor may suffice as an alternative assessment.