homeschooling in ohio

Homeschooling in Ohio – 8 Tips, Tricks & Resources

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Last Updated on October 10, 2023 by Sarah McCubbin

Homeschooling in Ohio is an adventure I would recommend to anyone who wants to try it! Ohio is centrally located to so many amazing educational opportunities and the cost of living is much lower than most of the country, which makes it great for families who might be living on a single income. Let me tell you about some of the things that make this a great place to live and homeschool! State Requirements for Homeschooling in Ohio

Homeschool Options in Ohio

Ohio homeschool families have 2 choices for traditional homeschooling. They can fill out a Notice of Intent form and send it to their local superintendent to let them know that their family will be homeschooling. Or a family can register as an non-chartered and non-tax exempt “08 School.” In either case, a child must be registered as a homeschooler if they are ages 6 to 18 unless a parent has already chosen to graduate their student. All parents may homeschool in Ohio, but if a parent did not graduate from highschool or get a GED, there are a few extra steps that are explained on the Notice of Intent form.

Ohio requires that 900 hours of education be given in a school year. They do not define “school year.” It is required that students receive instruction in Language Arts, Science, Fine Arts, Social Studies, Math, PE and Health. As a parent, you have complete control over what and how a subject is taught. You can use any method you would prefer whether that is unschooling or very structured classical…however, you want to teach is fine!

Tips for Homeschooling in Ohio

Record Keeping for Homeschooling in Ohio

There is no specific list of records that must be kept for homeschooling in Ohio. However Ohio Homeschool Regulations do require that the family fill out and submit a Notice of Intent Form (NOI) within the first week of school in that district. After receiving the NOI, the superintendent will send the family a letter saying that they have been notified by the parent. That letter can then be used as “proof” of homeschool status which can be useful for obtaining discounts from businesses and for field trips.

HSLDA recommends that even though Ohio does not require record keeping, that 2 years of the following be kept:

  • attendance records
  • work samples or a portfolio of your child’s work
  • any communication with school officials
  • information on textbooks or other resources you used
  • test results
  • other records that demonstrate your child was being homeschooled

My Favorite Homeschool Books!

Graduating a Student in Ohio

In order to graduate a student in Ohio, there are no formal requirements. Parents may graduate their students when they are ready…or they may follow their own criteria for graduation. Many parents choose to follow the state guidelines for graduation followed by public and private school students but that is not required.

It is recommended that parents create a transcript of a students skills and coursework to create a record of their high school education. Higher education opportunities usually require a transcript of high school couresework. In addtion, many universities in Ohio ask for a copy of a student’s last “Exclusion Letter.” Attaching this to a transcript is a means of verifying that a student was indeed homeschooled.

Need to plan a graduation for your homeschooler, here is how!

Ohio Field Trip Opportunities

A great option for field trips is to get a family pass to a zoo or museum and look at the reciprocal benefits. My favorite museum with reciprocal benefits is the McKinley Museum in Canton.

Field Trip Ideas include:

homeschooling in ohio

Ohio School Choice Movement

Ohio has a strong School Choice movement. Not all homeschoolers agree with it or want to partcipate in it because they are concerned that it may erode educational freedoms. It offers homeschoolers a $250 tax credit. Additionally, there is a program called ACE Ohio or Ohio ACE which provides educational savings accounts of $500 a year per student for children ages 6-18.

Important Homeschool Organizations in Ohio

There are several organizations that assist homeschoolers in Ohio with making informed and legal decisions in their homeschool.

CHEO – Christian Home Educators of Ohio

For 35 years, CHEO has been helping homeschool families educate their children and make informed decisions based on current homeschool law. They are a Christian organization but offer homeschooling advice to families from all backgrounds. They are very active in helping homeschool families be aware of legislative issues in Ohio that affect homechool freedom. In addition, they offer a ton of support to families through:

  • a commencement ceremony for graduting homeschool Seniors
  • a homechool convention (Teach Them Diligently)
  • college fairs
  • and more

Ohio Homeschool Parents

Another great organization for helping homeschoolers is Ohio Homeschool Parents. They offer advice and information on all stages of the homeschooling journey and their approach is more secular in nature.

Ohio Seal at the Ohio State Capitol Building

Conferences & Conventions for Ohio Homeschoolers

There are 2 main homeschool conventions in Ohio, although there may be smaller ones as well.

Great Homeschool Conventions – Cincinnati, OH

In April, the Great Homeschool Convention comes to the Duke Energy Center in Cincinnati, OH. It is HUGE. There are tons and tons of vendors…both faith-based and secular. In addition, there are some really fantastic classes for homeschool parents to learn how to teach different subjects. I especially like that they have activities for teens and children. They can be registered for those activities while their parents go to classes.

Teach Them Diligently Convention

In conjunction with Christian Home Educators, Teach Them Diligently often brings a conference to Sandusky, OH. It is not in Sandusky every year. But you can check the Teach Them Diligently website for more information.

Homeschool Groups in Ohio

Whether you are looking to connect online or in person, Ohio has a ton of opportunities to connect with other homeschoolers. Places to connect include:

Ohio is a Great Homeschool State

If you are new to homeschooling in Ohio, you will soon find out that this is a great place to educate your children. As a parent who has homeschooled in Ohio for 15 years…and used many of the School Choice options and scholarships to send my kids to private schools as well, I can vouch for the fact that this state is supportive of education.

Homeschooling families in Ohio are very diverse. People homeschool for all kinds of reasons. Because homeschooling has become so popular, it is really possible to find community with people who want to homeschool the way you do.

If you are just getting started on your homeschool journey and are overwhelmed with figuring it out, contact me. I offer homeschool consulting to help you confidently start your homeschool journey!