How to Homeschool in New York: 2024 Unbiased Guide

Looking for an unbiased homeschool resource that doesn’t have a hidden agenda? You’ve come to the right place to learn how to homeschool in New York.

To homeschool in New York, a parent or guardian should become familiar with New York homeschooling laws and regulations. Families must decide on a curriculum that fits their needs and be prepared for the self-discipline required to maintain a robust academic schedule.

Home helping homeschooled daughter

How to Homeschool in New York

In New York, homeschooling is considered private schooling, and parents are responsible for providing an education that is “substantially equivalent” to that provided in public schools. Here are some steps you can follow to homeschool in New York:

  1. Notify the school district: You must send a letter to the school district where you live stating your intention to homeschool. This letter should include the names, ages, and grades of the children who will be homeschooled.
  2. Create a plan: Develop a plan for your homeschooling program that includes the subjects you will teach, the materials you will use, and the schedule you will follow. The plan should be designed to provide a substantially equivalent education to that provided in public schools.
  3. Keep records: You must keep records of your homeschooling program, including attendance records, lesson plans, and evidence of your children’s progress. These records should be available for review upon request by the school district.
  4. Assess your children’s progress: You should periodically assess your children’s progress to ensure that they are receiving an education that is substantially equivalent to that provided in public schools. This can be done through standardized tests, portfolio reviews, or other methods.
  5. Comply with the law: You must comply with all relevant state and federal laws, including those related to child abuse and neglect, and report any suspected abuse or neglect to the appropriate authorities.

It’s a good idea to research the homeschooling laws in your state and consult with an attorney or homeschooling organization for specific guidance on homeschooling in New York.

Homeschooling with a private tutor

Free New York Homeschool Programs

Dedicated parents in New York can provide their children with a customized education thanks to free homeschooling programs available on the local, state, and national levels. These programs are designed to meet each student’s individual learning requirements.

Home educators typically have access to resources such as specialized curriculums, consultants, and experts in related fields. Additionally, there are often activities or workshops available from local home educators.

These programs provide a creative learning atmosphere in which each student’s educational goals are supported.

The NYC Department of Education offers extra help for parents who homeschool their children in New York.

The Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) can provide New York parents with valuable information about homeschooling regulations, webinars, and articles to support their path in homeschooling.

Between 2019 to 2020, the percentage of homeschooled students changed from 3.4% to 9%.

Does Homeschool Have to be Accredited in New York?

New York does not require homeschools to be accredited, but parents still can ensure their children’s education meets the state’s academic standards.

Also, even though New York does not require credentials or accreditation for homeschooling, parents can request to enroll their child in the independent study program at a New York-accredited school; this way they can access courses only available through regular schools.

This can provide a well-rounded learning experience for both parents and students.

67% of the homeschooled students successfully graduate from college.

New York Accredited Homeschool Programs

To be accredited, homeschools must provide evidence of enrollment and attendance, keep track of grades, administer state-approved assessments every year, have a teacher with at least a high school diploma or higher as the supervisor, and remain up-to-date on any changes to the curriculum.

Private schools must declare their adherence to state laws in admissions policies to stay compliant with compulsory attendance regulations.

Accredited homeschools allow parents to provide their children with a quality education in the comfort of their own homes.

Boy at home studying

Create a Designated Learning Place

Homeschoolers should have a specific area set aside for learning, to help establish a daily routine and provide an environment where their child can concentrate on schoolwork.

A dining table is an ideal spot for studying. It’s easily cleared off at the end of each day which allows it to be used for eating as well.

You can also provide your child with their own desk in their bedroom for added privacy and the opportunity to decorate it. Whatever you decide, be sure to create an environment that helps them focus on learning.

Over 300 million students were homeschooled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Stay On Track with a Daily Schedule

Sticking to a daily schedule for homeschooling has many advantages; here are some of them:

  • Establishing a daily routine can help homeschoolers prioritize tasks, complete more in less time, and improve productivity. Families with multiple students or other outside commitments may particularly benefit from this strategy.
  • Effective time management begins with planning. A daily schedule makes it easier to keep track of what needs to be done and when, and prevents feeling rushed or overwhelmed. Allocating specific blocks of time to tasks can help your family stay organized.
  • Homeschooling can provide a sense of structure and regularity, especially beneficial for kids accustomed to attending a traditional school. This can make them feel safer and more prepared to learn.
  • Families can benefit from daily schedules to stay accountable and meet their homeschooling objectives. This is important for those who tend to be easily distracted or delay their tasks.
  • Having a daily schedule in place can facilitate better communication among family members, helping to avoid misunderstandings and building a stronger bond between them.
Homeschool Calendar

Ease Into It

Homeschooling for new parents can be a big shift, so it’s crucial to not apply excessive pressure from the start. It is best to ease into this transition and move forward at a steady pace.

Homeschooling parents can begin with just a few basic supplies and then build on their resources as they get more confident with the homeschooling process.

When it comes to homeschooling, there are numerous options, so you should find one that works best for your family. Don’t be afraid to venture out and experiment with different techniques; the less stressed you feel, the more successful your learning experience is likely to be.

Regardless of the educational level of their parents, homeschooled students score between 80% and 90%.

Involve Your Child in Setting Learning Goals

Involving your child in homeschool assignment planning and curriculum scheduling is important for several reasons:

  • Offering students a sense of importance and ownership in their education will provide them with motivation and boost engagement.
  • Involving them in the homeschool process will help them feel that they are part of it, rather than it being done to them.
  • Getting your child involved in the homeschooling decision-making will give you a better understanding of their likes, talents, and shortcomings; allowing you to modify the learning environment to better accommodate them.

Generally, having your kid involved in homeschooling planning is key to a successful experience for everyone.

Mom and children looking at a globe.

Explore Other Ways of Learning Outside the Classroom

Homeschooled kids have an advantage as they can explore many educational possibilities not found in a regular school. This helps them gain a diverse range of knowledge and experience, resulting in a more comprehensive education.

In many cases, homeschoolers benefit from strong connections in the community. These relationships can open doors to new learning opportunities, such as classes and workshops taught by experts or members of the community.

Parents who homeschool their children should seize these chances to broaden their kids’ education.

Homeschooling families can give their children a very enriching education by exploring different learning techniques.

Children learning at a museum

Reach Out to Other Homeschool Families

Homeschooling can be difficult, especially for families without a support system. Luckily, there are various ways to make connections with other homeschoolers and build a community. One way is by connecting with local homeschooling organizations.

Homeschool groups can provide emotional support, practical advice from experienced homeschoolers, and opportunities for field trips and social interactions.

Joining an online forum or Facebook group is an excellent way to network with other homeschool parents.

Joining a parenting group can be helpful for exchanging resources, asking questions, and obtaining advice from parents who have the same experiences.

Making connections with other homeschooling families can help parents lessen the feeling of isolation and build a supportive environment for their kids.

When educated at home rather than in public schools, boys do 44% better on reading examinations.

Can Homeschooled Students Play Sports in New York?

In New York, homeschooled children cannot join public school athletics. However, they can take part in sports through private schools or home-based cooperatives. The New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) requires the athlete to be a “true student” of the public school team they are on.

Private schools are not required to follow the same regulations as public schools, allowing them to make the decision whether to accept homeschooled students onto their sports teams.

Homeschooling co-ops are groups of homeschooling parents that create educational and recreational opportunities for their kids.

Certain homeschooling cooperatives provide sports programs, though not all.

If you want to play sports as a homeschooled student in New York, your best option is to contact local private schools and homeschool cooperatives.

Homeschooled boys playing soccer

How to Homeschool When Both Parents Work

New York parents who opt to homeschool their children have to be creative with balancing work and school, as it is a difficult task.

With some ingenuity, it’s possible to work and homeschool at the same time. Let’s examine some pointers to help you achieve it.

Prior to February 2020, just 68% of parents who had homeschooled their children said it had been a success.

Get Your Childcare Involved

Some parents are lucky enough to have assistance in homeschooling while they’re away at work due to childcare.

When it’s not achievable or budget-friendly for all households, one should think outside the box to devise a plan that fits everyone’s needs.

Boy doing schoolwork

Delegate Chores

Involving your children in household tasks is an effective method to reduce the strain you may be facing between work and homeschooling. It also provides them with an opportunity to learn about responsibility.

It’s prudent to be mindful of your child’s abilities. A five-year-old probably won’t be able to do the laundry, but they can lend a hand with things like dusting or laying the table.

As they age, give your children more chores. By involving them in household tasks, you can reduce your work while teaching them essential life skills.

Before the epidemic, 69% of homeschooled children expressed a desire to continue their studies in this manner for the upcoming school year.

You and Your Spouse Work Alternate Shifts

Balancing homeschooling with both parents working can be difficult, especially if you and your partner have alternating shifts. Here are some strategies to help make it work:

  • It’s important to organize your week in advance by creating a schedule that includes all of your work hours and other responsibilities. This will help you plan effectively for homeschooling.
  • Make use of online materials: Utilizing online components like lesson plans, videos, and virtual excursions can be a great way to supplement your kid’s schooling when you are not able to be with them in person.
  • Be flexible with your homeschooling: If your daytime commitments don’t make 9 to 3 schooling feasible, think outside the box. For instance, you can do lessons at night or at the weekend. Or, break up the day into shorter chunks of time for educational activities.
  • Ask for assistance: Don’t be scared to look for support when you need it. This could involve employing a tutor or nanny to aid with home-based instruction while you are busy, or requesting the aid of relatives and friends.
  • Homeschoolers should be aware that it’s okay to take breaks. Finding a balance between work and homeschooling will help ensure that commitments are met on both fronts.

Homeschooling can be a tricky task if both parents are working. But it can be done with the right amount of planning and creativity, making it an enriching experience for the whole family.

Girl doing schoolwork on the computer

Take Advantage of Online Curriculums

Homeschooling is a great option to personalize your child’s education, yet it can be difficult to fit work and school into one schedule. To make it easier, why not opt for an online curriculum?

Structured learning programs can assist your child in their development and ensure concentration while you are away.

Furthermore, online learning can be tailored to your child’s individual requirements, making it convenient to discover a course that suits their distinctive learning approach.

In their children’s upcoming academic year, 54% of parents who were homeschooling before February 2020 were likely to do so full-time.

Assign the Child Solo Activities to Do While You’re at Work

Parents in New York who teach their kids at home must find ways to keep their children entertained while they are working. One way is to assign independent curriculum projects.

Tasks such as reading assignments, research projects, and math and writing exercises may be included.

It’s essential to select activities that are suitable for your child’s age and skill level.

If your child attends childcare, ask your provider to remind them to complete their homeschooling tasks daily.

Proper planning can help your child become independent and accomplish tough tasks during the workday.

Homeschooled girl doing school work

Allow Yourself Flexibility and Grace

Balancing a job and homeschooling can be difficult for parents, so it’s vital to give yourself some leniency and kindness while managing these duties.

Striving for perfection is an unattainable goal that can lead to disappointment. Focus on the successes, no matter how small, and congratulate yourself on your achievements.

Keep in mind that your kids are observing you, and will take after you. By displaying a positive outlook and openness to change, they’ll be more likely to do the same.

Balancing work and homeschooling can be difficult, but it also presents an excellent opportunity to impart valuable lessons to your children. Show them how to be adaptable and graceful in any situation, setting them up for victory down the line.

The typical cost of homeschooling is between $350-$750 per year for the parent(s).

New York Homeschool Curriculum Requirements 

Parents of homeschooled children in New York are given the freedom to choose their curriculum but must provide instruction in core academic subjects such as:

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Math
  • Science
  • Social studies
  • Physical education

Homeschooling can be tailored to individual families’ needs, whether that means a focus on certain subjects or learning styles.

Homeschooling is an efficient way to educate New York’s children, as parents are able to customize the curriculum to fit their child’s specific needs.

Parent writing a letter of intent to homeschool

Letter of Intent to Homeschool in New York

Homeschooling in New York requires filing a Letter of Intent with the local school district, demonstrating parents’ plan to educate their child at home.

This letter contains crucial details regarding the family’s homeschooling strategy and ensures compliance with applicable regulations.

Each year, the Letter of Intent should be submitted prior to the beginning of homeschooling classes.

Along with the Letter of Intent, families must provide the school district with a yearly Report of Progress. This document outlines the student’s academic achievements and the curriculum used.

Complying with these regulations will ensure that families are fulfilling the necessary homeschooling standards for New York.

The federal government saves $24 billion in taxpayer money thanks to homeschooling.

Is the New York Homeschool Curriculum Free?

In New York, more and more families are turning to homeschool due to various reasons. The cost of curriculum and educational resources is an issue that requires special attention for those who have chosen to go down this route.

Finding free homeschooling curricula and resources online is possible through many different methods.

A quick search can uncover a lot of sites that provide free homeschooling materials, such as lesson plans, worksheets, and full-curriculum packages.

Homeschooling families are often eligible for discounts or free memberships from educational organizations.

With dedication, you can homeschool your children effectively without spending too much money.

Older girl sitting holding a jar of money

How Much Does It Cost to Homeschool in New York?

The curriculum is often the most costly for homeschooling families and can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on what is required. Books, materials, and extracurricular activities are also common expenses.

Homeschooling entails a considerable financial investment, yet it can provide life-long rewards for both children and parents.

A safe environment was cited as the main motivation by 50% of parents who homeschool their children.

How Many Days Are Required for Homeschool in New York?

The New York State Education Department requires that homeschooled students receive 900 hours of instruction per year for grades 1 through 6, and 990 hours of instruction per year for grades 7 through 12.

These hours must be cumulative, meaning that they must be accumulated over the course of the entire school year.

This requirement ensures that homeschooled students receive a comparable education to their peers who attend traditional schools.

While the specific curriculum is up to the parents or guardians, the state does provide guidelines for what must be covered in order to meet the instructional hour requirements.

Homeschooling months of the year

New York Homeschool Record Keeping 

As a homeschooling parent in New York, you are required to keep records of your child’s educational progress. While this may seem like a tedious task, it is actually an important part of homeschooling.

Recordkeeping helps you to track your child’s progress and ensure that they are receiving a high-quality education.

It also provides a way for you to communicate with your child’s teachers and administrators.

In addition, record keeping can help you to identify any areas where your child may be struggling.

Here are some things that are important to keep a record of during the homeschooling years:

  • Test results
  • Samples of your student’s academic work
  • Documentation of the type of curriculum being provided to your child
  • Dialog with state and/or school officials
  • Attendance records

A good rule of thumb is to save these records for at least two years or longer if required.

By maintaining accurate and up-to-date records, you can ensure that your child is receiving the best possible education.

Test results, extracurricular activities, and socialization were mentioned as reasons for homeschooling by 14% of the parents.

New York Homeschool Graduation Requirements 

The state of New York does not have a specific homeschooling requirement in place for a student to graduate. Graduation standards are set by the parents as the facilitators of their child’s education. Once the student accomplishes the expected milestones set forth by the parents, they will graduate.

HS diploma

New York Homeschool Diploma 

For homeschooled students in New York, earning a diploma can be an even greater accomplishment. Homeschooled kids don’t have the structure of a regular school schedule, so they have to be self-motivated and disciplined to do well. A high school diploma is a symbol of hard work and dedication.

Earning a diploma shows that they have what it takes to set goals and achieve them.

In addition, a diploma for New York homeschoolers can open up new opportunities, such as colleges and scholarships.

For homeschooled students, a high school diploma is an important milestone on the road to success.

As of February 2020, at least 9 million Americans had been homeschooled at least once.

How Does a Homeschooled Student Get a Diploma?

Parents in New York who homeschool their children have the unique opportunity to be the sole provider of their child’s high school diploma. This means that they get to decide what criteria must be met in order for their child to earn the diploma.

Of course, parents will want to ensure that their child meets all the necessary requirements for graduation, such as taking required courses and passing exams.

However, they also have the freedom to tailor the curriculum to their child’s interests and learning style.

As a result, homeschooled students often emerge with a well-rounded education that prepares them well for success in college and beyond.

Before COVID-19, 42% of parents said they wished their kids had more freedom to pursue their hobbies.

Are Homeschool Diplomas Valid?

The homeschooling movement has been growing steadily in recent years, as more parents opt to educate their children at home. While homeschooling can provide a number of benefits, there is one potential drawback: homeschool diplomas may not be as recognized by colleges or employers.

Some institutions may require additional testing or coursework for homeschooled students, so students should be prepared to take some tests to show their level of academics.

It’s not uncommon whatsoever for homeschooled kids to be more academically advanced than their peers who attended a public school, so in the long run, homeschoolers are quite capable of holding the advantage.

However, it is important to note that homeschool diplomas are becoming increasingly common and should be accepted by most colleges and employers.


Although the information in this article was researched with the utmost integrity and sincerity, it cannot be held legally liable or expected to take the place of legitimate legal advice for your specific situation.

Trina Greenfield, Author
SmackDown Media LLC

About the Author:
Trina Greenfield, the owner of SmackDown Media LLC, is passionate about providing information to those considering their educational options. Trina is a seasoned writer, content creator, and website owner with a passion for unbiased research, educational platforms for children and adults, as well as all things family-related.