Summary Outline of Illinois School Laws
that Pertain to Private Homeschools
Specific Home School Statutes:
Alternative Statutes Allowing for
1. Section26-1: "Any child attending a private or a parochial school
where children are taught the branches of education taught to children
of corresponding age and grade in the public schools, and where the
instruction of the child in the branches of education is in the English
language" is in compliance with the Illinois compulsory attendance law
and is therefore not truant.
According to People vs. Levisen,
a homeschool is a private school if it does those things that private
schools are required to do.
Requirements: None, other than you must teach
those branches of education taught to children of corresponding age and
grade in the public schools and in the English language.
NOTE: Students using American
Sign Language (ASL) are considered as being taught in
English. Children for whom English is a second language must still be
taught in English. Of course, in addition to teaching the branches of
education in English you may teach anything else including the branches
in any language(s) you choose.
According to the Illinois Annotated Code Section27-22 the branches of education are Language Arts, Social
Studies, Math, Fine Arts, Physical Science, Physical Education, and
Attendance: Compulsory attendance begins upon a child's 6th birthday (changed by Public Act 98-0544, effective July 1st, 2014) and continues until their 17th birthday (unless the child has already graduated from high school). This is according to Illinois Annotated Code Section 26-1.
Note - Attendance:
Attendance does NOT mean sitting at a desk for five hours.
Homeschooling, by its very nature, incorporates a wide variety of
experiences. There are no mandated numbers of hours per day or days per
year of attendance for private schools in Illinois.
Certification: Only public school teachers must be
certified according to Section 21-1.
Testing: Not required by statute.
recognition of your program or registration of your school:
NOTE: If contacted by the Regional Superintendent or truant officers
homeschoolers should verify, preferably with a written letter of compliance,
that you are in compliance with Section 26-1 because you teach the
required branches of education in the English language.
No other official has authority to ask anything about your homeschool.
For more information please read "What
do I do if a truant officer comes to my door?"
You may be asked to sign a "Statement
of Assurance" and/or a "Home School Registration Form" form. There is NO reason why anyone should
fill these forms out. If you receive one, you can send it back blank with
a letter of compliance.
You may be asked to fill out the "Non-Public
School Registration Enrollment and Staff Report". This
assumes you are a Non-Public School, which is true. The form is
voluntary for all Non-Public Schools, but we urge you not to fill it
out. Bureaucrats like a piece of paper for their files
though, so you may wish to send them a letter of compliance
Arguments against registering as a homeschool can be read here:
Accreditation: Not required.
Requirements: Each Illinois private school develops their
own and gives their own graduation diploma. For reference,
State of Illinois graduation requirements can be found at: http://www.isbe.net/news/pdf/grad_require.pdf.
OUT of the public school procedures: Please visit our page
explaining how to withdraw a student from public schools.
INTO the public school procedures: Please see our page
explaining how to re-enroll a
homeschooled student into the public schools.
analysis does not constitute
the giving of legal advice.