Guide to Homeschooling in Florida
Deciding on a homeschool education for your children is a big step. Power Homeschool wants to help Florida residents start their homeschool journey by providing a guide to homeschooling that includes laws, requirements, and support networks.
Florida Homeschool Laws and Requirements
Homeschooling has been legal across the United States since 1993. Today, homeschooling is regulated by state laws, and Florida homeschooling laws are fairly laid back compared to other states.
If you are a parent considering homeschooling your child in Florida, we recommend that you do extensive research beforehand. The Home School Legal Defense Association is a wonderful resources for families wanting to learn more about homeschooling in their state. The Florida Department of Education also provides Florida’s homeschooling laws, requirements, and homeschool statistics.
In Florida, homeschool parents should keep a school portfolio on file for each student. These portfolios should include records and materials, such as a log of educational activities and samples of quizzes, essays, or projects. We recommend that a parent keeps these records on file throughout the students education. Power Homeschool’s online portal makes record keeping easy because parents can print all necessary documents.
Florida Standardized Assessments
Many homeschool parents will have their students participate in standardized testing to track progress and make sure they are advancing academically. The Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test is a criterion-referenced test, meaning that test concepts are based on grade-specific content standards for Florida. Although taking a standardized test is only one option for a homeschooler’s annual evaluation, this method is available for students between third grade and high school.
Florida Homeschool Graduation Requirements
Florida laws don’t specify graduation requirements for homeschooled students. We recommend setting guidelines that will set the student up for success after graduation, whether they start working or attend college. If your student has a particular university or college that they want to attend, it is a good idea to look at their requirements for homeschool students to ensure you cover all the necessary material.
For Florida homeschool graduates, diplomas are administered by the parent of the homeschool. Although the FPEA provides diplomas at the statewide graduation, it is still signed by the parent.
Homeschooling Groups and Support in Florida
Parents and families have access to more support and resources for homeschooling than ever before. Homeschooling support can come from groups, associations, and co-ops. Florida has no shortage of resources available to homeschool families.
Like most states, Florida has a state-wide homeschool association called the Florida Parent Educators Association. This association provides support and resources to thousands of Florida families. FPEA members have access to information on local homeschool groups, the annual convention, discounted events and educational merchandise, graduation ceremony, college and career fair, and email updates.
In addition to the FPEA, homeschool families can join homeschool groups and co-ops. Many homeschool groups can be found on Facebook; however, most groups are private, so you’ll need to request to join. Homeschool groups are a great way to meet other families and get advice from parent educators. Likewise, co-ops provide support, but these are more academic-focused and allow students to learn alongside peers. Both groups and co-ops are categorized by city or region as well as their focus. For example, some groups are faith-based, while others focus on a particular subject like STEM. Homeschool associations, groups, and co-ops are wonderful resources for parents and students alike.
How to Get Started Homeschooling in Florida
If you are thinking about homeschooling your child, you are probably wondering where to begin. Once you decide that you want to start homeschooling, parents should submit a notice of intent to homeschool to the public school system’s superintendent.
After notifying your local agency, you should select a homeschool curriculum. Power Homeschool’s online curriculum is available for K-12 students with courses in the core subjects of mathematics, language arts and reading, science, and social studies as well as electives, foreign languages, and health.
Join thousands of parents that homeschool with our self-paced, interactive courses.
Florida Field Trips
One of the benefits of homeschooling is the flexibility to go on more field trips. Touring museums, exploring wildlife, and visiting monuments is a wonderful way to enhance any student’s education. The following are just several examples of the MANY field trip sites that Florida has to offer.
- Emerald Coast Science Center in Fort Walton Beach: Students get hands-on learning experiences with interactive exhibits, including robotics, engineering, electricity, and much more! Various educational programs are available for students of all levels.
- Gulf Breeze Zoo in Gulf Breeze: Learn about different wildlife species and habitats through interesting attractions, educational programs, and special events for the whole family.
- Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville: Explore the Butterfly Rainforest, Discovery Zone, and many other permanent and limited-time exhibits. Homeschool days are available for students to participate in hands-on learning activities.
- Whetstone Chocolates Factory Tour in St. Augustine: A field trip to a chocolate factory may just be every child’s dream. Tour the factory, try samples, and learn about the history of chocolate.
- The Florida State Capitol in Tallahassee: On a tour of the Florida Capitol building, homeschoolers can learn about the history and government in the state they call home.
- Florida Air Museum in Lakeland: This museum is home to vintage aircrafts, flight simulators, and historical artifacts. Homeschoolers can participate in educational programs and special events.
- Skeletons Museum of Osteology in Orlando: Tour exhibits and participates in hands-on educational programs to learn the skeletons of numerous animal species at this museum’s Homeschool Adventure Days.
- Everglades National Park near Miami: Discover rare and endangered species that are native to the region through a variety of guided tours and ranger-led activities.
- Perez Art Museum in Miami: Homeschool students can tour museum exhibits from artists and cultures around the world. Family education programs offer learning opportunities for students of all ages.
- The Mound House in Fort Myers Beach: Guaranteed to have something for the whole family, The Mound House offers museum and archaeology tours, beach walks, demonstrations, kayak tours, and so much more!
- The Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum in Key West: Visit the home of one of America’s most famous authors. Tour the location where he lived and wrote for over ten years and imagine a day in the life of the legendary writer.
- Crane Point Hammock in Marathon Key: Students can learn about ecosystem conservation methods and the flora and fauna that are native to the region through educational programs and special events.
Our team at Power Homeschool hopes this provides you with the resources you need to begin homeschooling your children in Florida. Contact us if you have any questions about Power Homeschool’s online curriculum!
Disclaimer: The information provided on this web page is for general information purposes only. The information provided does not constitute legal advice and may not contain the most up-to-date information.