California Homeschool Laws

Homeschooling in California

How do I start homeschooling?

California has 5 schooling options for homeschoolers.

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

Download the Modify™ app for tracking and record keeping.  

Enjoying learning together! 

Homeschool Laws

According to the California State Education Code, there are several ways that parents can educate their children at home:

  1.   Attend a public school offering an independent study program
  2.   Attend an existing private school that has a satellite program (or PSP)
  3.   Attend an existing public charter school that has an independent study program
  4.   Open a private home-based school by filing a Private School Affidavit with the California Department of Education

All children between the ages of 6 and 18 years of age fall under a compulsory education requirement in California.  Children attending a private full-time day school and children taught by a certified tutor are exempted. Switching from public school to homeschool requires filing a California homeschool affidavit, known as a Private School Affidavit, with the California Department of Education.  The public school district listed in the Affidavit then “makes a determination of whether a home-schooled child has met statutory requirements and therefore is exempt from public school attendance.”

Homeschool Requirements

California’s homeschool requirements are not as stringent as in some other states.  California’s Education Department “does not provide guidance on how to homeschool.”  California is one of three states requiring a level of competence for a parent choosing to homeschool (must be “capable of teaching”), but there is no minimal educational requirement.

There are also no written California homeschool curriculum requirements.  However, the California Department of Education states that “a student being schooled at home in California should receive instruction in the various branches of study required in the public schools of the state.”  California’s standards and curriculum frameworks should be used as guides for curriculum.

There are no California laws or regulations regarding graduation or diploma requirements for homeschoolers and other private school students.  Parents are recommended to research admission/entry requirements for college, military, and employment opportunities prior to homeschooling and to examine various methods of record keeping toward meeting those admissions/entry requirements.

For more information on homeschooling in California view the list of resources in the reference guide. 

Record keeping in California:

Education law for private schools in California designates that each must maintain the following records in their files:

  • A copy of their completed Private School Affidavit (PSA)
  • Attendance records, which can be as simple as a marked calendar
  • Courses of study offered in your homeschool
  • Faculty addresses and qualifications, which is left up to the homeschooling parents whether or not they are capable of teaching their own children
  • Immunization Records or Waivers

Modify™ has made keeping these records convenient and easy. 

Graduation requirements

California diploma requirements.
Parents homeschooling under the private home study option determine when their student has fulfilled graduation requirements and can issue their own homeschool diploma.

California high school testing requirements.
Homeschool students are not subject to testing requirements for graduation.

California high school transcripts.
Homeschool parents may create their own student transcripts, and may include any information they deem pertinent to colleges, military, and/or future workplace organizations. Download the Modify™app to create official transcripts.

California high school course credits.
Parents determine when their student has fulfilled graduation requirements; for the purpose of creating transcripts, some homeschool parents do assign credits to individual courses.

GED eligibility.
The same requirements for eligibility apply to homeschoolers as to public school students.

Modify™ has made keeping these records convenient and easy. 


Homeschool laws can change often, so please check for updates at the  California State Education Code website.

Schooling at home in California
Independent Study Program
Private School
Public Charter School
Private School affidavit
Private School Affidavit Form 
Private School Affidavit Instructions
District Transfers
Schooling at home FAQ’s

Content Standards and Common Core Content Standards
Curriculum Frameworks
General Education Development (GED) Test 
High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE)
Additional private school resources

Note: All information on this site is provided with no guarantee of accuracy. Modify™ is not responsible for any errors, omissions, or outdated information, or for the results yielded through use of this information.

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