Saturday, June 21, 2014


From facebook, by Melody Orris Collins: For those of us in PA here is a letter you can send to your district to hopefully persuade them to just take the evaluator's letter. There are two districts in the Pittsburgh area that no longer ask for the portfolios  and hopefully there will be more. The worse the district can do is say no but if they see more and more districts doing this hopefully they will change their minds... One of the benefits of House Bill 1013 prompted Maryalice Newborn to write this document. It will help many in PA and if it changes the school districts minds and helps us turn in less, that would be great.

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[Your Phone # (optional)]

[Superintendent's Name]
[Your School District]
[District's Address]

[Today's Date]

Dear Superintendent __________________,

I am writing to request a change in the way the District handles legal requirements involving homeschoolers which, I believe, would save time, energy, and effort for everyone involved. 

Currently, homeschoolers are required to provide what amounts to as double documentation - both an “annual written evaluation of the student’s educational progress as determined by a licensed clinical or school psychologist or a teacher certified by the Commonwealth or by a nonpublic school teacher or administrator,” as well as a “portfolio of records and materials.” (Both quotes are from the PA Home Education Law.) Having both of these requirements is redundant and costly, particularly in terms of the time it takes to review portfolios, which often contain many pages of material.

Ms. Suzanne Tallman of the PA Department of Education has been instructing superintendents that portfolios are optional. (She may be reached at 717-214-8212 or via e-mail at Pittsburgh Public Schools and Apollo-Ridge School District are two area districts that no longer require portfolios.

Please consider joining these districts in requiring only the evaluator's letter as sufficient proof of educational progress for homeschoolers in our school district. Thank you in advance for your kind attention to this matter.


[Your Name Here]

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