The Department has a legitimate interest in and responsibility for the appropriate education of all school age children in the State of Hawaii and recognizes home-schooling as an alternative to compulsory school attendance. Home-schooling is a parent-initiated educational alternative.

​Military Families If you're a member of the U.S. Armed Forces and want information about home-schooling specific to your circumstance, please refer to our page for Military Families.

​​​​​​​Frequently Asked Questions

Where do I submit my notice of intent to home-school?

Exceptions to Compulsory Education (Form 4140) or a letter of intent to home-school should be sent to the principal of the public school in your neighborhood.

What is required to begin home-schooling my child?

Form 4140 must be completed and sent to the neighborhood school. A letter of intent, signed by the parent, can be used in place of Form 4140.

When can I begin to home-school my child?

Home-schooling may begin as soon as the signed Form 4140 or letter of intent is sent to the neighborhood school.

What needs to be included in the letter of intent?

Name, address and telephone number of child; birth date and grade level of child; and signature of the parent and date of signature.

Do I need to submit any other records?

Parents are not required to officially enroll and un-enroll students in order to home school their child; therefore, no birth certificate or proof of residency is required.

How do I know if the school has acknowledged my intent to home school?

The school and complex area office acknowledge the notice of intent submitted by the parents by sending the parents the original Form 4140 after it is signed by the principal and complex area superintendent; or writing “acknowledged” on the bottom of the parent’s letter of notification with the signature of the principal and complex area superintendent, and returning the original letter to the parent. Signed copies of Form 4140 or the letter of intent are kept on file at the school and district office.

Who is considered qualified to teach home-schooled children?

A parent teaching his/her child at home shall be deemed a qualified instructor regardless of educational background or training.

What are my responsibilities to the Department after I have sent my intention to home school?

The parents submitting a notice to home-school their child shall be responsible for the child’s total educational program including athletics and other extracurricular activities. An annual progress report, showing satisfactory progress in all content areas, shall be submitted at the end of each school year.

Is my child required to participate in annual assessments?

Students who are home-schooled may participate in the Smarter Balanced assessment(s) and Hawaii State Assessment (HSA) Science assessments or the HSA Alternate assessments at the request of the parent or guardian. Schools must provide these students with one testing opportunity for each relevant content area if requested. Home-schooled students may not participate in the End-of-Course exams due to the design requirements of these assessments.

Although home-school students are only required to test in grades 3, 5, 8, and 10, the student is eligible to participate in the assessments described in the above paragraph at the local public school. A parent may also elect to arrange for private testing of an equivalent standardized test at the parent’s own expense. Additionally, the parent may request and the principal may approve other means of evaluation to meet the Statewide Testing Program requirements.  

What are appropriate methods to demonstrate my child’s satisfactory progress?

A score on a nationally-normed standardized achievement test, which demonstrates grade level achievement appropriate to a child’s age; progress on a nationally-normed standardized achievement test that is equivalent to one grade level per calendar year, even if the overall achievement falls short of grade level standards; a written evaluation by a person certified to teach in the State of Hawaii that a child demonstrates appropriate grade level achievement or significant annual advancement commensurate with a child’s abilities; or a written evaluation by the parent which shall include a description of the child’s progress in each subject area included in the child’s curriculum, representative samples of the child’s work, and representative tests and assignments including grades for courses if grades are given.

Do I need to submit any health records to the neighborhood school?

Health records are not required for home-schooled children. It is not necessary for the home-schooled child to submit the TB (tuberculosis) test clearance or Form 14 (Student Health Record).

Do I need to re-submit intent to home school annually?

No. The only time a new Form 4140 or a new letter of intent to home school needs to resubmitted is when the child transitions from elementary to intermediate/middle school or intermediate/middle school to high school, or if the child moves to another neighborhood.

Do I need to submit a curriculum to the Department?

Parents are not required to submit their curriculum to the Department or the school of record for review unless the school has reasonable cause to believe that there may be educational neglect. A parent is responsible for keeping a record of the planned curriculum for the child. The curriculum shall be structured and based on educational objectives as well as the needs of the child, be cumulative and sequential, provide a range of up-to-date knowledge and needed skills, and take into account the interests, needs and abilities of the child. A principal at the school of record may request to view the curriculum if the annual report is not sufficient to show satisfactory progress.

How do I know what to teach my child while home-schooling?

Schools are responsible for informing parents what basic units of study should be covered for a particular grade level. Information on the standards and benchmarks for each grade level can be found here in the Student Learning section of this website.

How can I end home-schooling?

Whenever the parent chooses to terminate home schooling, the parent is required to notify the principal of the school of record (school where intent to homeschool was sent). The child shall be re-enrolled in the local public school or a licensed private school unless a new alternative educational program is presented within five school days after the termination of homeschooling. Notification may be written or verbal.

What grade level will my elementary child be placed after homeschooling has ended?

For grades one through eight, the home-schooled child shall re-enroll at the appropriate grade level by birth date. For example, if the home-schooled child by birth date should be an eighth grader, then he/she is enrolled as an eighth grader.

Can I challenge the grade level of my re-enrolled child?

Once the child is enrolled, if the school or parent has a concern about appropriate grade level placement, then the school shall evaluate the student (as it would any other student) and make adjustments accordingly, including placement at another grade level. Parents should be informed and involved in the assessment, as feasible. The principal’s decision about grade placement is final.

Will my child receive a high school diploma at the completion of home schooling?

Home-schooled students do not receive a high school diploma. A home-schooled student who wants to earn a high school diploma from the local public high school shall attend high school for a minimum of three full years to meet the graduation credit requirements.

Is there a way to receive a high school equivalency?

Yes, a home-schooled student with a valid form 4140 who has been receiving home-school instruction for at least one semester may earn a high school equivalency credential and a Hawaii Adult Community School Diploma from the community school for adults. To earn this high school equivalency credential, the student must attain a passing score on either the General Educational Development (GED) or HiSET test.

May my child apply to college after completing home schooling?

A child who is being home-schooled may participate in any college entrance examination, which is made available to all other students. The principal of the local public high school shall, upon request, supply written acknowledgment that a child has been homeschooled in compliance with the requirements of Chapter 12, Hawaii Administrative Rules. The letter is written for home-schooled children whose parents have met the requirements of Chapter 12, i.e., submitted an annual progress report and test data for appropriate grade levels.

Contact Information

Fern Yoshida

Phone: (808) 305-9822

Email: Fern.Yoshida@k12.hi.us


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