Join NICHE efforts to simplify our state homeschool law! Iowa homeschooling families have demonstrated a record academic excellence and a huge cost savings to Iowa taxpayers. It's time to simplify our Iowa homeschooling law& rules!
NICHE is promoting a HF 588 in the Iowa Legislature that would introduce a new section in the Iowa Code: Independent Private Instruction. This new section would provide a simple alternative to the current Competent Private Instruction -- with greatly reduced paperwork & regulation. [See HF 588 text below] This bill passed the Iowa House on March 16, 2011 by a 57-37 vote. The bill now awaits action in the Iowa Senate.
NICHE Legislative Liaison Bill Gustoff Holds Governor Branstad's Proclamation of Iowa Homeschool Week at 2012 NICHE Capitol Day
NICHE has also recently released the preliminary results of a research study commissioned by NICHE to quantfy Iowa homeschool student population and to determine the economic impact of homeschooling on Iowa taxpayers. Preliminary results indicate that there are about 16,000 students being homeschooled in Iowa & the net savings to Iowa taxpayers is over $150 million annually! Click here for a preliminary summary.
Iowa Homeschool Families Visit the Iowa State Capitol to Meet with Their Legislators
House File 588
HOUSE FILE 588 BY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION (SUCCESSOR TO HSB 147)
A BILL FOR 1 An Act relating to the establishment of an independent private 2 instruction option for students of compulsory attendance 3 age. 4 BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA: TLSB 1675HV (1) 84 kh/sc
PAG LIN 1 1 Section 1. Section 261E.8, subsection 2, Code 2011, is 1 2 amended to read as follows: 1 3 2. Students from accredited nonpublic schools and students 1 4 receiving competent private instruction or independent private 1 5 instruction under chapter 299A may access the program through 1 6 the school district in which the accredited nonpublic school or 1 7 private institution is located. 1 8 Sec. 2. Section 299.1, subsection 1, Code 2011, is amended 1 9 to read as follows: 1 10 1. Except as provided in section 299.2, the parent, 1 11 guardian, or legal or actual custodian of a child who is of 1 12 compulsory attendance age, shall cause the child to attend some 1 13 public school,or an accredited nonpublic school, or place 1 14 the child under competent private instruction or independent 1 15 private instruction in accordance with the provisions of 1 16 chapter 299A, during a school year, as defined under section 1 17 279.10. 1 18 Sec. 3. Section 299.1B, Code 2011, is amended to read as 1 19 follows: 1 20 299.1B Failure to attend ==== driver's license. 1 21 A person who is of compulsory attendance age, who is not 1 22 exempt under section 299.2, who does not attend a public 1 23 school,or an accredited nonpublic school, who is not 1 24 receiving competent private instruction or independent private 1 25 instruction in accordance with the provisions of chapter 1 26 299A, and who does not attend an alternative school, or adult 1 27 education classes, shall not receive an intermediate or full 1 28 driver's license until age eighteen. 1 29 Sec. 4. Section 299.6A, subsection 1, Code 2011, is amended 1 30 to read as follows: 1 31 1. In lieu of a criminal proceeding under section 299.6, 1 32 a county attorney may bring a civil action against a parent, 1 33 guardian, or legal or actual custodian of a child who is of 1 34 compulsory attendance age, has not completed educational 1 35 requirements, and is truant, if the parent, guardian, or legal 2 1 or actual custodian has failed to cause the child to attend a 2 2 public school,or an accredited nonpublic school, or placed 2 3 the child under competent private instruction or independent 2 4 private instruction in the manner provided in this chapter. If 2 5 the court finds that the parent, guardian, or legal or actual 2 6 custodian has failed to cause the child to attend as required 2 7 in this section, the court shall assess a civil penalty of not 2 8 less than one hundred but not more than one thousand dollars 2 9 for each violation established. 2 10 Sec. 5. Section 299.8, Code 2011, is amended to read as 2 11 follows: 2 12 299.8 "Truant" defined. 2 13 Any child of compulsory attendance age who fails to attend 2 14 school as provided in this chapter, or as required by the 2 15 school board's or school governing body's attendance policy, 2 16 or who fails to attend competent private instruction or 2 17 independent private instruction under chapter 299A, without 2 18 reasonable excuse for the absence, shall be deemed to be a 2 19 truant. A finding that a child is truant, however, shall not 2 20 by itself mean that the child is a child in need of assistance 2 21 within the meaning of chapter 232 and shall not be the sole 2 22 basis for a child in need of assistance petition. 2 23 Sec. 6. Section 299.11, unnumbered paragraph 1, Code 2011, 2 24 is amended to read as follows: 2 25 The truancy officer may take into custody without warrant 2 26 any apparently truant child and place the child in the 2 27 charge of the school principal, or the principal's designee, 2 28 designated by the board of directors of the school district 2 29 in which the child resides, or of any nonpublic school, or 2 30 any authority providing competent private instruction or 2 31 independent private instruction as defined in section 299A.1, 2 32 subsection 2, designated by the parent, guardian, or legal or 2 33 actual custodian; but if it is other than a public school, 2 34 the instruction and maintenance of the child shall be without 2 35 expense to the school district. If a child is taken into 3 1 custody under this section, the truancy officer shall make 3 2 every reasonable attempt to immediately notify the parent, 3 3 guardian, or legal or actual custodian of the child's location. 3 4 Sec. 7. Section 299.12, subsection 2, Code 2011, is amended 3 5 to read as follows: 3 6 2. This section is not applicable to a child who is 3 7 receiving competent private instruction or independent private 3 8 instruction in accordance with the requirements of chapter 3 9 299A. If a child is not in compliance with the attendance 3 10 requirements established under section 299.1, and has not 3 11 completed educational requirements through the sixth grade, 3 12 and the school has used every means available to assure the 3 13 child does attend, the school truancy officer shall contact 3 14 the child's parent, guardian, or legal or actual custodian to 3 15 participate in an attendance cooperation meeting. The parties 3 16 to the attendance cooperation meeting may include the child 3 17 and shall include the child's parent, guardian, or legal or 3 18 actual custodian and the school truancy officer. The school 3 19 truancy officer contacting the participants in the attendance 3 20 cooperation meeting may invite other school officials, a 3 21 designee of the juvenile court, the county attorney or the 3 22 county attorney's designee, or other persons deemed appropriate 3 23 to participate in the attendance cooperation meeting. 3 24 Sec. 8. Section 299A.1, Code 2011, is amended to read as 3 25 follows: 3 26 299A.1 PrivateCompetent private instruction and independent 3 27 private instruction. 3 28 1. The parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child of 3 29 compulsory attendance age who places the child under private 3 30 instruction shall provide, unless otherwise exempted, competent 3 31 private instruction or independent private instruction in 3 32 accordance with this chapter. A parent, guardian, or legal 3 33 custodian of a child of compulsory attendance age who places 3 34 the child under private instruction which is not competent 3 35 private instruction or independent private instruction, 4 1 or otherwise fails to comply with the requirements of this 4 2 chapter, is subject to the provisions of sections 299.1 through 4 3 299.4 and the penalties provided in section 299.6. 4 4 2. For purposes of this chapter, "competentand chapter 299: 4 5 a."Competent private instruction" means private instruction 4 6 provided on a daily basis for at least one hundred forty=eight 4 7 days during a school year, to be met by attendance for at 4 8 least thirty=seven days each school quarter, by or under the 4 9 supervision of a licensed practitioner in the manner provided 4 10 under section 299A.2, or other person under section 299A.3, 4 11 which results in the student making adequate progress. 4 12 For purposes of this chapter and chapter 299, "private 4 13 instruction" 4 14 b. "Independent private instruction" means instruction that 4 15 meets the following criteria: 4 16 (1) Is not accredited. 4 17 (2) Enrolls not more than four unrelated students. 4 18 (3) Does not charge tuition, fees, or other remuneration for 4 19 instruction. 4 20 (4) Provides private or religious=based instruction as its 4 21 primary purpose. 4 22 (5) Provides enrolled students with instruction in 4 23 mathematics, reading and language arts, science, and social 4 24 studies. 4 25 (6) Provides, upon written request from the superintendent 4 26 of the school district in which the independent private 4 27 instruction is provided, or from the director of the department 4 28 of education, a report identifying the primary instructor, 4 29 location, name of the authority responsible for the independent 4 30 private instruction, and the names of the students enrolled. 4 31 (7) Is not a nonpublic school and does not provide competent 4 32 private instruction as defined in this subsection. 4 33 (8) Is exempt from all state statutes and administrative 4 34 rules applicable to a school, a school board, or a school 4 35 district, except as otherwise provided in chapter 299 and this 5 1 chapter. 5 2 c."Private instruction" means instruction using a plan and 5 3 a course of study in a setting other than a public or organized 5 4 accredited nonpublic school. 5 5 Sec. 9. Section 299A.11, Code 2011, is amended to read as 5 6 follows: 5 7 299A.11 Student records confidential. 5 8 Notwithstanding any provision of law or rule to the 5 9 contrary, personal information in records regarding a child 5 10 receiving competent private instruction or independent private 5 11 instruction pursuant to this chapter, which are maintained, 5 12 created, collected, or assembled by or for a state agency, 5 13 shall be kept confidential in the same manner as personal 5 14 information in student records maintained, created, collected, 5 15 or assembled by or for a school corporation or educational 5 16 institution in accordance with section 22.7, subsection 1. 5 17 Sec. 10. Section 321.178, subsection 1, paragraph c, Code 5 18 2011, is amended to read as follows: 5 19 c. Every public school district in Iowa shall offer or make 5 20 available to all students residing in the school district, 5 21 or Iowa students attending a nonpublic school or receiving 5 22 independent private instruction as defined in section 299A.1, 5 23 subsection 2, in the district, an approved course in driver 5 24 education. The receiving district shall be the school district 5 25 responsible for making driver education available to a student 5 26 participating in open enrollment under section 282.18. The 5 27 courses may be offered at sites other than at the public 5 28 school, including nonpublic school facilities within the public 5 29 school districts. An approved course offered during the summer 5 30 months, on Saturdays, after regular school hours during the 5 31 regular terms or partly in one term or summer vacation period 5 32 and partly in the succeeding term or summer vacation period, 5 33 as the case may be, shall satisfy the requirements of this 5 34 section to the same extent as an approved course offered during 5 35 the regular school hours of the school term. A student who 6 1 successfully completes and obtains certification in an approved 6 2 course in driver education or an approved course in motorcycle 6 3 education may, upon proof of such fact, be excused from any 6 4 field test which the student would otherwise be required to 6 5 take in demonstrating the student's ability to operate a motor 6 6 vehicle. A student shall not be excused from any field test 6 7 if a parent, guardian, or instructor requests that a test 6 8 be administered. A final field test prior to a student's 6 9 completion of an approved course shall be administered by a 6 10 person qualified as a classroom driver education instructor and 6 11 certified to provide street and highway driving instruction. A 6 12 person qualified as a classroom driver education instructor but 6 13 not certified to provide street and highway driving instruction 6 14 may administer the final field test if accompanied by another 6 15 person qualified to provide street and highway driving 6 16 instruction. 6 17 EXPLANATION 6 18 This bill establishes under the Code chapter governing 6 19 private instruction an option for independent private 6 20 instruction. 6 21 Under the bill, "independent private instruction" means 6 22 instruction that is not accredited; enrolls not more than 6 23 four unrelated students; does not charge tuition, fees, 6 24 or other remuneration for instruction; provides private or 6 25 religious=based instruction as its primary purpose; provides 6 26 enrolled students with instruction in mathematics, reading and 6 27 language arts, science, and social studies; provides, upon 6 28 written request from the superintendent of the school district 6 29 in which the independent private instruction is provided or 6 30 from the director of the department of education, a report 6 31 identifying the primary instructor, location, name of the 6 32 authority responsible for the independent private instruction, 6 33 and the names of the students enrolled; is not a nonpublic 6 34 school and is distinct from competent private instruction as 6 35 defined in Code chapter 299A(2); and is exempt from all state 7 1 statutes and administrative rules applicable to a school, 7 2 a school board, or a school district, except as otherwise 7 3 provided in Code chapters 299 and 299A, relating to compulsory 7 4 education and private instruction. 7 5 Students who are receiving independent private instruction 7 6 are allowed to access the district=to=community college sharing 7 7 or concurrent enrollment program through the school district in 7 8 which the private institution is located. 7 9 Students who receive independent private instruction are 7 10 not deemed truant unless they fail to attend the independent 7 11 private instruction. A truancy officer may take into custody 7 12 without warrant any apparently truant child and place the child 7 13 enrolled in independent private instruction in the charge 7 14 of the authority providing independent private instruction 7 15 designated by the parent, guardian, or legal or actual 7 16 custodian. Code section 299.12, which provides for attendance 7 17 cooperation meetings and agreements, is inapplicable to a child 7 18 receiving independent private instruction. 7 19 Personal information in records regarding a child receiving 7 20 independent private instruction that are maintained, created, 7 21 collected, or assembled by or for a state agency, shall be kept 7 22 confidential in the same manner as personal information in 7 23 student records maintained, created, collected, or assembled by 7 24 or for a school corporation or educational institution. 7 25 The public school district in which a student receives 7 26 independent private instruction shall offer or make available 7 27 to the student an approved course in driver education. 7 28 A student receiving independent private instruction is not 7 29 required to meet the competent private instruction requirements 7 30 of Code chapter 299A, such as annual achievement evaluations 7 31 and requirements establishing consequences for failure to make 7 32 adequate progress, nor are they eligible to participate in 7 33 dual enrollment and the home school assistance program. A 7 34 child identified as requiring special education is eligible for 7 35 placement under competent private instruction, but not if the 8 1 child is under independent private instruction. LSB 1675HV (1) 84 kh/sc
HF 588 A Bill Establishing Independent Private Instruction [IPI]
The defining section of HF 588 is Section 8 starting at Page 3 Line 26 in the text to the right.
This section creates a new option for Iowa home educators besides the existing option, Competent Private Instruction [CPI].
The new option is called Independent Private Instruction [IPI], which is fully defined starting at Page 4 Line 14 in the text of the bill to the right.
Notice that Independent Private Instruction [IPI] is very simply defined.
The key line begins at Page 4 Line 33 in the bill text to the right.
Independent Private Instruction [IPI] is exempt from all state statutes and administrative rules applicable to a school, a school board, or a school district.
Further, parents using the Independent Private Instruction option only have to provide a simple report identifying the instructor, IPI location, reponsible party, and student names -- only if a written request for such a report is received. [Page 4 Lines 25-30]
Other sections in this bill are merely included to assure that Independent Private Instruction students are recognized properly in various other sections of Iowa Code, such as those dealing with the provision of driver education, the protection from truancy charges, the confidentiality of public records, etc.
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