How to Homeschool in California for Free & Cheap!

If you reside in California or planning on moving there, you possibly want to know how to homeschool in California while following local laws, right?

Other questions you might have include:

  • ·         Can I homeschool my child in California?
  • ·         What homeschool laws does California have?
  • ·         What kind of homeschool support is available to me?

The answer to the first question is a “YES”. To get answers to the rest of the questions (and many more), you’ll want to browser all the information we offer below:

How to Homeschool in California

Homeschooling authorities in California have five basic options for teaching kids at home, and there are:

  • ·         File an affidavit to function as a private school
  • ·         Use a public-school independent study option.
  • ·         Enroll in a public charter school for homeschoolers.
  • ·         Enroll in a private school satellite homeschool program.
  • ·         Hire a certified private tutor (or become a credentialed tutor yourself).

As a responsible parent, or guardian, your first step as a new homeschool family is to deeply carry out research on each of those optons, deciding which one is right for you, and then follow the homeschool laws that meets your needs.

How to Homeschool in California for Free, by Doing it Yourself

Tired of your kids bringing home some weird ideas? Tired of having to deal with the crap public school schedule shits? Want to keep your kids safe from covid-19? Well, you have options.

Note: This is not legal advice but a piece of information that I have:

·         Purchase a file folder

·         Put the following information on it

An attendance record that has your child’s absence’s only:

Your resume and/or your spouse that includes any training or schooling you have. (There is not an educational requirement, you just need to have some background proof of some).

Add in copy of your diploma or transcripts of your highest level of education

·         Next, file a PSA (Private School Affidavit), also known as R4.

·         Once, you are done, print off a copy and keep your confirmation code (just in case).

ALSO SEE: 20 Reasons to Homeschool

Homeschooling In California Requirements

You’ll have to teach in English (unless your student is currently learning English, in which case it needs to be at least 50%).

You also need to teach at least the “accepted” subjects. To discover what they are, head over to the Content Standards on the Education Department’s site to get grade-level goals (though not required).

You also need to keep a basic course list. Mine is basically a book list.

The subjects for 1st to 6th (there aren’t rules for kindergarten):

  • ·         English
  • ·         Math
  • ·         Science
  • ·         Social Studies
  • ·         Fine Arts
  • ·         Health
  • ·         PE

California Homeschooling Laws and Requirements

Homeschooling in California is legal, but like in every other state, there are certain laws and guidelines parents or guardians need to be aware of.

At the moment, there are more than one-way parents can provide home education to their students.

·         Hire a certified private tutor or get the credential yourself.

·         Participate in public school independent study.

·         File a Private School Affidavit to establish a private school in your home.

·         Enroll in a private school satellite homeschool program.

·         Enroll in a private school satellite program or charter school.

·         Enroll in a public charter school for homeschoolers.

·         The California Department of Education has detailed instructions on how to legally provide an at-home education in California using one of these methods.

  • Credentialed Teacher/Tutor

If you have a teaching credential at your child’s grade level or know a trusted tutor with the right content credentials and grade level, then this option is for you.

Here are the basics:

·         Requires basic subjects: reading, math, science and social studies

·         Gives you power to determine specific content

·         Requires the least amount of record-keeping

·         Needs at least 3 hours of instruction per day for a minimum of 175 days per year

·         Specifies that instruction must occur between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm

  • Private School Affidavit

The PSA is a document that officially withdraws your child from public school, making you the official administrator and teacher of your own private school.

While this may sound daunting, it comes with the gift of flexibility and there are loads of websites online to help you with the record-keeping and requirements.

Here are some details about the PSA option:

·         Requires basic subjects: math, reading, social studies, and science

·         Feel free to determine specific content

·         It involves some record-keeping

·         Requires you to file a PSA with the CA Department of Education between October 1st and 15th every year

For more information about requirements regarding the PSA, follow this link.

  • Private School Satellite Program

The PSP option is mostly determined by the available private schools in your locale/area. With this option, a private school is able to file its own affidavit and will handle the administrative tasks, letting you solely focus on teaching.

In other words, signing up for a satellite program makes you a teacher for the private school of your choice.

The private school then provides some support in curriculum and activity planning, administration, and record keeping.

With the PSP option, it is crucial to remember the following:

·         Tuition fees may apply.

·         You and you alone are responsible for purchasing books and supplies.

·         You will have the support and assistance of the school.

·         You may be subject to certain additional requirements.

Our advise? You should explore the available private school satellite programs in your area. You may find one that is the perfect fit! For a list of available programs, go here.

  • Independent Study Programs

The ISP is yet another cool option for parents who plan to homeschool one child or keep students out for 365 days or two years.

With this option, your child remains enrolled in either a public or charter school but receives instruction from you.

You will be considered a teacher’s aide and have a credentialed teacher assigned to advise and monitor you and your child. It is important to remember the following:

·         Materials may be available on loan.

·         Support systems, structure, and curriculum flexibility will vary across school sites.

·         Religious material may not be taught until after the school day.

·         You must agree to have your child tested in accordance with school policy.

Similar to the PSP program, in the ISP program we recommend you carry out research on the specific options available in your area that are best suited for your child.

With the right teacher supervising your independent study program, this could be the perfect option for you!

How is Online Public School Different from Homeschooling in California?

Although homeschool and online public school have lots of similarities, here are some of the key differences:

A K12-powered online public school:

·         Is tuition-free*

·         Complies with mandatory state assessment requirements

·         Provides guidance and support from a school staff that includes school counselors, administrators, , and Tennessee-licensed teachers

·         Gets rid of the need for parents to shop for curriculum by using K12’s proven curriculum, developed by education professionals

·         Follows a traditional school calendar

How To Get A Work Permit In California Homeschool

Your parents cannot issue work permits to you, but you can get a work permit from an admistrator other than your own parents.


Yes! That is it! Remember, we have all seen the present school system so it can’t be that diffcultt! Good Luck!

Your very first step as a new homeschool family is to thoroughly research each of those options, decide which one is right for you, and then follow the homeschool laws pertaining to your choice.

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