Arizona Homeschool Law

Homeschooling is best defined as parent-led, privately funded, relationship-based education of a child at home. We’ve provided links to Arizona Revised Statutes pertaining to Arizona homeschool laws, articles about homeschool laws, and more. You’ll also find the Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool along with instructions on where to send it.

ARIZONA REVISED STATUTES REGARDING HOME EDUCATION

ARIZONA STATE LAW DEFINES A HOMESCHOOLER AS FOLLOWS

ARS §15-802G 2. Homeschool means a nonpublic school conducted primarily by the parent, guardian or other person who has custody of the child or nonpublic instruction provided in the child’s home.

Homeschoolers are parents or legal guardians who choose to educate their own children at home in at least the required subjects of reading, grammar, math, science, and social studies pursuant to A.R.S. §15-802.

Click on the links below to view the statutes directly from the State of Arizona website.

Section 15

15-763. Plan for providing special education; definition

15-745. Children instructed at home; testing; prohibition

15-802.01. Children instructed at home; eligibility to participate in interscholastic activities

15-802. School instruction; exceptions; violations; classification; definitions

15-828. Birth certificate; school records; exception

Arizona Education Options

Student Classifications in Arizona

AFHE fully supports parents in choosing the education option that is best for each of their children. It is critical, however, to maintain a clear distinction between homeschooling and other education options in our state in order to preserve the freedom parents currently enjoy to direct the education of their children. One sure way to diminish this freedom is to mix private homeschooling with taxpayer funds because taxpayer funds are subject to state regulation. All education options are not created equal. Only one option is defined by the state of Arizona as homeschooling, although other home-based education options exist.

Homeschooling

Arizona Revised Statutes 15-802(G)(2) defines a homeschool as “a nonpublic school conducted primarily by the parent, guardian, or other person who has custody of the child, or nonpublic instruction provided in the child’s home.” The parent is required to file an Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool for children ages 6 to 16. A homeschooling parent takes full responsibility for their child’s education, including the financial responsibility. A homeschooled student is exempt from standardized testing requirements. There are no reporting requirements for homeschooled students and the parent does not need to be a certified teacher. The parent creates the high school transcript and issues a diploma to their child.

Public School

Tuition-free schools funded by the state and managed through school districts. Enrolled students are public school students and attend school outside of the home.

Charter School

Tuition-free schools funded by the state and operated independent of school districts by either non-profit or for-profit entities. Enrolled students are public school students.

Virtual Charter

Tuition-free online schools funded by the state that takes place in the home. This option is public school at home. Enrolled students are public school students. Instruction is provided and directed by the virtual charter school.

Private School

A non-public school other than the child’s home. Tuition is paid by the family. Private schools meet the same number of days as the public school. Students enrolled file a private school affidavit. *Some private schools receive taxpayer funds.

ESA

The Empowerment Scholarship Account {ESA) is a taxpayer-funded program which was created by the Arizona State Legislature to broaden educational opportunities for children with special needs and other special populations.

Download the Arizona Education Options

There are many options for education options. You can download the PDF here.

Definition of a homeschooler

Arizona State Law Defines A homeschooler AS FOLLOWS

ARS §15-802 (G)(2) Homeschool means a nonpublic school conducted primarily by the parent, guardian or other person who has custody of the child or nonpublic instruction provided in the child’s home.

Homeschoolers are parents or legal guardians who choose to educate their own children at home in at least the required subjects of reading, grammar, math, science, and social studies pursuant to A.R.S. §15-802.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Do I need to show proof of birth?

Proof of birth must be submitted with the notarized affidavit. The most common proof of birth is the birth certificate. Please note that a certified copy of the birth certificate must be submitted (not a photocopy). Please refer to ARS §15-828 for other acceptable proofs of birth if a certified birth certificate is not available. The original/certified birth certificate will be returned to you after the County School Superintendent’s office has made a copy for their records. If you do not wish to send the affidavit and your child’s birth certificate to the county by mail, you have the option to hand-deliver the documents and wait while the clerk makes a copy of the birth certificate for their file and returns the original to you at that time.

Can I delay formal education?

You have the option to delay the start of formal education until your child is 8 years of age by noting so on the Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool. The affidavit must be filed for children ages 6 and older even if the parent elects to delay formal education until the age of 8.

Can I homeschool children under 6?

We are often asked if you can homeschool a child under the age of 6. The answer is yes, you can. Many families begin homeschooling for preschool and kindergarten. Once the child turns 6, file the Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool within 30 days of their birthday.

Should I file an affidavit for an Empowerment Scholarship Account (ESA) Student?

Parents who sign a contract to participate in an Empowerment Scholarship Account, shall not file an Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool for their ESA student. See additional information above under definition of a homeschooler.

What do I need to teach my child?

By filing the Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool, the parent is agreeing to instruction in at least the subjects of reading, grammar, mathematics, social studies, and science. There are no reporting or standardized testing requirements for homeschoolers in Arizona, however filing the Affidavit fraudulently or failing to provide instruction is a class 3 misdeameanor [ARS 15-802 E.]. (Unless exempt in ARS 15-802 or 15-803.)

I’m moving to another county in Arizona. Do I need to file a new affidavit?

If a homeschooling family moves from one Arizona county to another, the parent or legal guardian must file an Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool in the new county of residence along with the child’s certified birth certificate or other accepted proof of birth. Notify the previous county in writing that you are no longer homeschooling in that county.

What if I decide to stop homeschooling?

If you enroll your child in a public school, charter school, virtual public school, or private school (including hybrid private schools), the parent or legal guardian must notify the County School Superintendent within 30 days of termination of homeschooling. We recommend doing so in writing.

What if I choose to enroll my child in public school?

Should you decide to enroll your child in a public school after he/she has been homeschooled, the school will test your child to determine grade level placement pursuant to ARS 15-745.

Please note, a public high school will not accept homeschool credits toward an accredited diploma issued through the school. We have heard many sad stories of families who enrolled their previously homeschooled student in a public high school in 10th, 11th, or 12th grade and were told they had to enroll as a freshman in order to receive a diploma.

We encourage families to explore the option of homeschooling through high school, which can be a rich and rewarding experience preparing the student well for college, the military, or the marketplace. If you decide to enroll your child in a public school for high school, you may consider doing so by 9th grade to avoid credit issues for their diploma.

What if I homeschool on a reservation?

A parent homeschooling their child while living on a Native American Reservation should file the Affidavit of Intent to Homeschool with the County School Superintendent’s office as normal. While Native American tribes are sovereign, they fall under the compulsory attendance/compulsory education law of the state.

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