Homeschooling in Alabama
With some of the most favorable homeschool laws in the country, Alabama is an awesome place to begin or continue your homeschooling adventure! We have the blessing of mild weather, an abundance of beautiful state parks and landscapes, a unique collection of amazing museums, and a variety of fascinating and fun field trip destinations. Alongside college football and iced sweet tea (and maybe Shunarrah billboards)…you’ll find that southern hospitality is still traditionally practiced with warm welcomes from supportive communities that love to make you feel at home.
Legal Options: Homeschooling in Compliance with Current Alabama Laws.
It’s so important to read for yourself and understand the education laws in your state. At the very foundation of educational legislation in Alabama is the Compulsory Attendance Law. (Section 16-28-3) These sections require every child (age 6-17 years) to be enrolled in a legal school.
In Alabama, there are no laws that define a stand-alone “homeschool” option, so homeschoolers must choose to either enroll in a church school or a private school or choose to use a certified tutor. For the two school choices, families would be utilizing the “home program” option as defined in (16-28-1 Definitions).
- Church schools are exempt from reporting requirements. Enrollment is the responsibility of the parent, who is still required to submit a church school enrollment form to the local Superintendent. If the student withdraws from the Church School, the Administrator is then required to report the withdrawal.
- Private schools can be established in the home. Since a person is considered a “legal entity” parents may choose to do this. Private schools are no longer licensed and regulated by the state, but they are still subject to enrollment and reporting requirements.16-1-11 (Private schools to register and report)16-28-7 (Report of enrollment)
- Certified tutors must be licensed, and this option is very uncommon.
Some additional legal information that may be helpful:
-Changes made in 2014- (Act 245-2014) Senate Bill 38
–Memo from AL Superintendent- includes private school forms.
–Article from Alabama School Connect with a great explanation of laws.
Once you understand your legal options, I highly recommend that you connect with a local support group. In Alabama, you’ll find several welcoming and informative homeschool communities. I’ve listed some of the larger groups in each region. Any of these groups can help you connect with smaller support groups, co-ops, and church school options in their respective areas. You can view a statewide church school directory here, and on some of the following support group websites.
North- HOPE Support Group (Huntsville)
West- T.H.E. Support Group (Tuscaloosa)
Central- BHC Community (Birmingham)
East- CHEAHA Homeschooling Group (Anniston)
South East- H.E.A.R.T. of the Wiregrass (Enterprise)
South/Coastal- S.A.H. South Alabama Homeschoolers (Mobile)
- You can see a list of venues that offer homeschool days here.
- Questions about homeschool students participating in public school sports?
* This facebook group has you covered.
* (Section 16-1-11.6) Membership of nonpublic schools in Alabama High School Athletic Association
* Amendments to (Alabama High School Athletic Association) AHSAA Bylaws
- Celebrating 200 years
Alabama will celebrate its 200th birthday in December of 2019. ALABAMA 200 is a three-year celebration of the people, places, and events that form our rich history. You can explore all sorts of fun and educational events in each of Alabama’s 67 counties here. Events, state history, free worksheets, and so many other great resources can be found on this site! Be sure to check it out.
- Capitol Day!
An amazing group of leaders I’ve had the pleasure of working with across the state on various projects are excited to announce the first-ever Capitol Day event for Alabama homeschoolers! We hope to see families from all over the state come together on Thursday, April 2, 2020, in Montgomery. This will be a great opportunity to meet our legislators, and for legislators to meet homeschoolers. Please consider joining us and sharing this opportunity with others in your local community by subscribing
to the event website at http://alcapitolday.com/.
Interested in learning about homeschooling in another state? Learn more in the Homeschooling In All 50 States series.
Barbie lives in Leeds, AL (near Birmingham) with her husband, Andrew, and their two boys. This is where she was born and raised, and she plans to stay there for the rest of her days. She is a homeschool graduate turned homeschool mom who is currently homeschooling her two sons. Her older son will graduate this year. In the past, she has enjoyed teaching a variety of agricultural and science classes to students at local co-ops and serving on the state homeschool board as an organizer for the yearly convention. She is currently the director of a local co-op, while working with other leaders on projects for the statewide Alabama homeschool community. She enjoys playing in the dirt–whether by searching for insect specimens for science class, collecting fishing worms, or planting flowers and vegetables. She is also a lover of great books, an avid watcher of psychology lectures, and has a passionate dedication to drinking coffee and leadership development.
You may contact her via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org