Saskatchewan Homeschooling FAQ
Is homeschooling legal in Saskatchewan ?
Yes. Children of compulsory school age in Saskatchewan (age 7 to 15 according to the government’s manual) are legally excused from attendance at school if they are “receiving instruction in a registered home-based education program.”
A “home-based education program” is defined in section 2 of the Education Act as an education program that is initiated by the parents, is under the direction of the parents, and the instruction is received at home and from home. The definition also includes it being “provided to a pupil who has attained the age of six years but has not attained the age of 18 years,”
Do homeschooled children in Saskatchewan have to be registered with any official authority?
Yes. Parents must fill out the Notification of a Home-based Education Program form and send it to the school board or conseil scolaire, along with a written education plan, 30 days before starting the program. The home-based education program is considered registered once the registration official provides a signed written response to the notice of intent to homeschool.
Registration includes providing the names, ages, and genders of the children to be homeschooled, along with information about the parent who is responsible for initiating and directing the program, and a declaration accepting responsibility for the child(ren)’s education.
Registration must be renewed annually.
If the parent cancels the home-based education program during the school year, it cannot be renewed until the start of the following school year.
Is there any monitoring of homeschooling programs in Saskatchewan ?
Yes. The board of education or conseil scolaire will not grant registration if the program does not meet all requirements. Parents have an opportunity to adjust their program submission accordingly. Once a home-based education program is registered, parents must submit an annual progress report to their registering authority for each home-based learner, near the end of the school year.
The government’s Home-based Education Questions and Answers document states that, “Monitoring is the responsibility of the school division. A designated school division official ensures that parents are following the regulations and policies. The emphasis in monitoring home-based programs is on educational outcomes. School divisions ensure that children are receiving an education based upon an educational plan rather than concentrating on the methods by which the education program is delivered. School divisions cannot, as a component of monitoring, require home visits or interviews of the students without parental consent. However, monitoring may include a conference when the parents register their home-based education program and when the program concludes.”
The FAQ document also states that “Home-based education is monitored by the Director, Independent Schools and Home-based Education, who ensures that provincial policy and regulations are followed.”
To deal with disagreements between homeschooling parents and the board or conseil, there is a dispute resolution procedure in place, which can involve the Ministry of Education.
Where can I find the Saskatchewan curriculum?
You can search for “curriculum” (or something more specific like “mathematics 3 curriculum” for grade 3 math) on the search page of the government’s Publication Centre.
Do I have to follow the Saskatchewan curriculum?
No. The whole point of submitting a home-based education plan for approval is that it may differ from the public school curriculum but must still meet certain criteria, namely that it be “not inconsistent with the official Goals of Education for Saskatchewan; and not inappropriate for the age and ability of the students on the program.” The government’s FAQ document states that, “A written educational plan includes: the philosophical approach to the program; the learning materials that will be used; broad general learning outcomes for language arts, math, science, and social studies; and the means of assessing student progress.”
Do I have to teach a certain language or in a certain language?
Yes. Instruction must be provided in either English or French. Another language can be used, no more than 50% of the time, if approved by the registering authority during the registration process. If the language of instruction is other than English, English language arts must be included in the homeschool program, starting no later than the child’s 8th birthday.
Do I have to be a certified teacher in order to homeschool my children in Saskatchewan?
Is there any funding for homeschooling in Saskatchewan ?
It depends on the school division. Each one makes its own homeschool policies, including levels of funding, if any. They are compelled by the legislation to provide certain services to homeschoolers, but other services are optional.