Home Instruction (Home Schooling)

What is Home Instruction (Home Schooling)?

Parents/guardians may choose to educate their children at home rather than enrolling in a traditional public or private school. The parent provides regular and thorough instruction during the school year in the subjects usually taught in the public schools to children of the same age. The parent or guardian selects and purchases the home school curriculum and materials to be used. Home instruction must be supervised by the FCPS home school office or by a private organization registered with the Maryland State Department of Education. Evidence of instruction in all of the following areas is required: English, mathematics, science, social studies, art, music, health and physical education.

Resources to build knowledge about Maryland home instruction regulations:

Contacts

Home Instruction Office
33 Thomas Johnson Drive
Frederick, Maryland 21702
homeinstruction@fcps.org
Phone: 301-644-4000
Fax: 301 644 5246

Joseph Burau
Home Instruction Monitor

301-644-5244

Maribel Gonzalez
Home Instruction Monitor

301-644-4012

Karen Smith
Administrative Secretary

301-644-4000

Access to FCPS Programs for Home-Schooled Students

Home Instruction Reviews, Semester 1, 2022

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A REVIEW: The purpose of a review is for families to report on the required topics of study (English, Math, Science, Social Studies, Art, Music, PE, Electives), curriculum, online programs, course selections and other pertinent information describing what your child is/has/will be completing through the course of the first semester of school year 2022-23. 

REVIEW DUE DATE:  Please choose one of the review options below and submit review materials no later than December 22, 2022. We strongly recommend that you submit your review materials anytime, and as soon as possible, before December 22, 2022. All review materials should be emailed to portfolioreviews@fcps.org with the student’s full name in the subject line.

Option 1: Google Portfolio Form: Access the Google form here. Your use of this form will automatically send a copy to portfolioreviews@fcps.org  with your students name in the subject line. In addition, you will automatically receive an emailed copy of your review submission.  

Option 2: Portfolio Summary or Learning Plan Form: Email/scan/mail a completed First Semester Portfolio Summary Review and Learning Plan Form. Simply click to acess and download the First Semester Portfolio Summary Review and Learning Plan Form. The same form is also available in traditional PDF format. All review materials should be emailed to portfolioreviews@fcps.org with the student’s full name in the subject line.  

Option 3: Transcripts/Grade Reports: Email/scan/mail a copy of a transcript/grade report/progress report which you have received from the organization/college/program/co-op (i.e. Penn Foster, Liberty, Keystone, ABEKA etc.) your child is working with.  All review materials should be emailed to portfolioreviews@fcps.org with the student’s full name in the subject line.

Option 4: Digital Portfolio - Work Samples: Email/scan/mail samples of your student’s work for each required subject (English, Math, Science, Social Studies, Art, Music, PE, Electives). Please, send no more than 3-5 work samples per subject. Work samples should be formatted as jpegs, docs or pdfs.  All review materials should be emailed to portfolioreviews@fcps.org with the student’s full name in the subject line.

Option 5: GED: Email/scan/mail review materials (the Name of GED program/ book, etc. that your child is using to prepare for the GED. You can easily send this information using Option 1 or 2 above.

Option 6: Face to Face Review: A Home Instruction Monitor will be available in a Frederick County Library Study Room (ask the Librarian where the study room is located) on the dates and times listed. Review visits will be on a first come first serve basis. Please note the Home School Office follows the FCPS Inclement Weather Policy, thus if FCPS schools are closed due to inclement weather our office is also closed and any appointments canceled on the same day.

Brunswick Library Study Room
Monday, December 5, 2 pm – 6 pm

C. Burr Artz Library Study Room
Monday,  December 5, 2022, 2 pm – 6 pm

Emmitsburg Library Study Room
Tuesday, December 6, 2022, 2 pm – 6 pm

Middletown Library
Tuesday, December 6, 2022, 2 pm – 6 pm

Myersville Library Study Room
Wednesday, December 7, 2022, 2 pm – 6 pm

Thurmont Library Study Room
Wednesday, December 7, 2022, 2 pm – 6 pm

Urbana Library Study Room
Thursday, December 8, 2022, 2 pm – 6 pm

Walkersville Library Study Room
Thursday, December 8, 2022, 2 pm – 6 pm

WHAT IF NONE OF THE REVIEW OPTIONS ABOVE WORKS FOR ME: If none of the options above works for your family, please contact the home instruction office at homeinstruction@fcps.org as soon as possible.

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I HAVE SUBMITTED MY REVIEW MATERIALS: You will receive a response from our office and be removed from subsequent Review Reminder emails which will be sent in the future.    

WHAT IF I DO NOT SEND IN REVIEW MATERIALS BY December 22, 2022: Families that have not complied by this review due date will be notified of their non-compliance status and will be referred to the Pupil Personnel Worker assigned to their child’s school.  

Video Series: The Home Instruction Process in Maryland

How is this different than Virtual Learning?

Students who transfer to home schooling are no longer considered an enrolled student with FCPS, therefore they will not have access to the learning materials, equipment and programs that FCPS provides. This means there will be no access to Schoology or other online resources, participation in sports or extracurricular activities or special programs like the Career and Technology Center or high school academies for students transferred to home schooling.

Virtual Learning is one of the current delivery models of instruction for FCPS enrolled students. Students are offered the option to participate in a FCPS sponsored on-line distance learning program and do not have to physically attend school. Students are accountable for attendance and coursework. They receive grades, credits and/or report cards. These students may participate in the regular sports and extracurricular programs offered to other FCPS students. 

How do I transfer or enroll in Home Instruction?

FCPS accepts homeschooling notification forms for students who are 5 years old or older on September 1st up to the student’s 18th birthday.

Complete a Home Instruction Notification form.

Be sure to note your oversight options: either FCPS oversight or select a Non-public Entity Registered to Supervise Home Instruction. A list of these programs can be found here:

Non-public Entities Registered to Supervise Home Instruction (Umbrella)

Submit your form via email to homeinstruction@fcps.org

If you are current FCPS student, please return any equipment (computer, Chromebook, Mobile Hotspot) to your child’s school.

Can I return to FCPS schools if I decide that home schooling does not work for my child?

Students may return to their public school, however, be sure to contact the school’s front office in advance to obtain re-enrollment and re-entry information. Homeschool students who want to transfer back to a public school will have their homeschool portfolio materials, etc., evaluated by the school principal to determine placement and transfer credits. Please refer to FCPS Regulation 400-49 for details on this process.

I am home schooling under FCPS oversight, what can I expect from a portfolio review?

Generally, a portfolio review is an opportunity for a parent or guardian to share a portfolio of materials which demonstrates regular and thorough instruction in studies usually taught in the public schools to children of the same age. The portfolio includes relevant materials, such as instructional materials, reading materials, and examples of the child’s writings, worksheets, workbooks, creative materials and tests. Parents may also choose to provide a grade report or transcript from an accredited or unaccredited school in lieu of a portfolio.

Samples of a portfolio summary form or learning plan, grade report, transcript or digital portfolio can be found below:

How does my child graduate from high school?

High school students participating in home instruction do not earn course credits or high school diplomas from Frederick County Public Schools. Home schooled students are eligible to take the GED at the age of 16 to earn a Maryland State High School Diploma. Families may choose to follow the guidelines set forth by MSDE and referenced by FCPS under Graduation Requirements.