In March of this year, the Department of Education (DOE) released the online Home Instruction Portal. Since then, home instruction parents all over the state have begun to utilize the new portal, and have reported that the new process is less burdensome than the former paper-only process, which required double-reporting and greater expense and time due to mailing and requesting proof of receipt.
Many have also provided valuable feedback about what was confusing, or concerning, from a parent perspective. As a result, the DOE revisited the online forms to make some technical improvements, and has released an updated Home Instruction Portal as of July 9, 2019. If you submitted your Notice for 2019-2020 prior to this date, please be assured that it is still properly filed, and there is no need to repeat the submission.
If you have not yet filed your Notice, please check out the updated online portal. Other ways to file include submitting the revised Notice of Intent to Provide Home Instruction, or other form or letter, to either the Superintendent of Schools in the public school administrative unit where you reside, or to the DOE. You no longer need to file paperwork in both places. You may provide Notice in a different format, provided it contains all required information:
- Applicable School Year
- Parent/Guardian Full Name
- Physical Address, City, Zip Code; and Mailing Address (if different)
- Child’s Full Name
- Child’s Date of Birth
- Indicate First or Subsequent Year of Home Instruction
- Date Home Instruction Will Begin (if First Year)
- Assurance (if First Year): FIRST YEAR HOME INSTRUCTION PARENT ASSURANCE : The home instruction program will provide at least 175 days annually of instruction and will provide instruction in the following subject areas: English and language arts, math, science, social studies, physical education, health education, library skills, fine arts and, in at least one grade from grade 6 to 12, Maine studies. At one grade level from grade 7 to 12, the student will demonstrate proficiency in the use of computers. The home instruction program will include an annual assessment of the student’s academic progress that includes at least one of the forms of assessment described in 20-A M.R.S. § 5001-A (3)(A)(4)(b).
- Prior Year Assessment (if Subsequent Year)
- Statement of Intent to Continue Providing Home Instruction (if Subsequent Year): SUBSEQUENT YEAR HOME INSTRUCTION PARENT STATEMENT: I intend to continue providing home instruction and enclose the prior year annual assessment of the student’s academic progress as outlined in 20-A M.R.S. 5001-A(3)(A)(4)(b).
- Date of Signature
- A valid email address if parent would like an acknowledgment
As a reminder, the updated process will allow parents to provide first/subsequent year notice “simultaneously to the school officials of the administrative unit in which the student resides and to the commissioner” in one of three ways:
- Enter information once annually directly on the new Home Instruction Portal, uploading any required prior year assessment information;
- Complete the form or letter on paper once annually and take it, with any required prior year assessments, to the resident superintendent’s office; or
- Complete the paper form or other form/letter once annually and mail it with any required prior year assessments to the Department of Education or to the Superintendent’s Office.
Submission using any of the methods described will result in the automatic generation of an acknowledgment to the parent/guardian via email, provided a valid email address is provided.
More information is available at https://www.maine.gov/doe/schools/schoolops/homeinstruction.
Please direct any questions or concerns to Pamela Ford-Taylor at firstname.lastname@example.org or 207-624-6617.