Recognition of Completion

There are also differences between the states in graduating children from homeschools. In states in which homeschools must be or can be operated as any other private school, graduation requirements for all private schools in that state generally also apply to the homeschools. Some state education laws have no graduation requirements for private schools, leaving it up to the private schools to determine which students have met the graduation requirements, and thus allowing homeschoolers the same privilege (for example, as stated above, Texas considers home schools to be equivalent to unaccredited private schools). And in yet other states, homeschoolers receive no official recognition that is equivalent to graduation. Independent homeschoolers in Florida, for example, cannot truthfully claim to have "graduated", even after completing twelve years of homeschooling (however, Florida does grant such students equal access to the state's system of public colleges and universities).

Homeschooling is increasingly becoming recognized as a viable alternative to institutional education, and fewer families are being targeted for prosecution. In an unintended demonstration of the increasing acceptance of homeschooling, the outgoing Superintendent of Public Instruction for the state of California, Delaine Eastin, caused a furor by telling the state legislature that homeschooling was illegal and that families could not form private schools themselves or teach their children without credentials. She called for a legislative "solution" to the growing "problem" of homeschooling. The legislature balked at taking any action. Then, Ms. Eastin's successor, Jack O'Connell, instructed his legal staff to review the state laws. Homeschooling advocates were informed by one of the Department of Education attorneys that the state was reversing the position it had taken under Ms. Eastin's tenure. Statements that parents could not teach their own children or form their own private schools were removed from the state Department of Education website. Although some officials still maintain traditional views, truancy prosecutions in California are much rarer now than they were under Ms. Eastin's leadership. Those prosecutions that are still pursued routinely fail, and district attorneys now usually refuse to file such cases.

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