Michigan Homeschool Laws
Minimal oversight makes Michigan homeschool requirements some of the most lenient and straightforward in the country. Compulsory school attendance laws require any child ages 6 to 17 to attend school full time, but families have two options for meeting this requirement while educating at home.
Below, you will find information on Michigan’s two homeschool options and the requirements to homeschool in Michigan under each one of them. Learn what items you should track while teaching your child at home, understand what your homeschooler needs to do to graduate, and even discover how to transfer from homeschool to public school if you decide to end your home education adventure prior to graduation.
- Two Options for Homeschooling in Michigan
- Access to School Services as a Homeschooler
- Homeschool Recordkeeping in Michigan
- Michigan Homeschool Graduation Requirements
- Enrolling in Public School after Homeschooling
- Additional Resources Related to Homeschooling Michigan
*This should by no means be interpreted as legal advice. It is your responsibility to interpret and understand the laws that you will be homeschooling under.
Two Options for Homeschooling in Michigan
What are the requirements for homeschooling in Michigan? There are two ways to legally teach your child at home in Michigan:
- As a non-public school – the non-public school option in Michigan has significantly more requirements associated with it. Subjects can only be taught by a certified teacher (or claim a religious exemption to this requirement) and must be comparable to the curriculum taught in the local district for your child’s age and grade level. If the Superintendent of Public Instruction’s office requests it, you must be willing to provide information regarding “enrollment of pupils, courses of studies and the qualifications of teachers.”
- As a home education program – teaching your child under a home education program does not require any type of reporting to a school official. You also do not need to go through an enrollment process; you simply begin homeschooling when you feel that you are ready to do so. However, you must include instruction in the subjects of Reading, Spelling, Mathematics, Science, History, Civics, Literature, Writing and English Grammar.
More information relating to the home education rules for Michigan can be found at A2ZHomeschooling.com.
Full Details of Michigan’s Homeschool Laws
Access to School Services as a Homeschooler
By law, homeschoolers in Michigan have access to certain services provided by the public school system, even while they are not enrolled in those schools. For example, homeschoolers may participate in yearly state testing at their local school for no cost. Some local school boards in the state also allow homeschoolers to participate in athletics, but you must contact the school board in the area where you reside to confirm availability. Extracurricular activities such as band, physical education, and drivers ed may also be available to homeschoolers in specific regions, if approved by the local school board. (Note: If using the non-public school option, homeschoolers are also eligible for special education services from their local school system.)
Homeschool Recordkeeping in Michigan
Although Michigan does not require home educators to maintain any specific records by law, it is a good idea to create a homeschool portfolio of your child’s progress year to year. That information can be helpful if your homeschooler needs to return to school for any reason and also when creating a high school transcript for future college or career needs. The types of things you might want to keep records of could include:
- scores on any standardized tests taken
- report cards or grades by subject
- samples of subject work at each grade level
- extracurricular activities and achievements
- volunteer service
Michigan Homeschool Graduation Requirements
Michigan has no laws relating to graduating your homeschooler. Compulsory attendance is required for students until the age of 17, but there are no Michigan guidelines on what your high schooler must achieve prior to graduation. Instead, homeschool parents determine their own criteria for when their homeschooled high schooler is prepared to receive a diploma.
You can certainly follow the Michigan Merit Curriculum guidelines for graduation if you wish, but only you and your student know exactly the curriculum path that is the best fit. If college is on your student’s radar, it’s a good idea to look at the recommendations for any school they may apply for and align your homeschool goals with those. But if your high schooler has an alternative to college in mind, it’s totally fine to align their goals with that path instead.
If you are curious about how a homeschool high school completion differs from traditional school graduation, the below chart outlines some of the comparisons between the two.
|Michigan diploma requirements||The Michigan Merit Curriculum outlines 18 credits that high schoolers must achieve to be eligible for graduation.||Parents determine when their student has fulfilled graduation requirements and can issue their own homeschool diploma; students of private/online schools may receive diplomas from those institutions.|
|Michigan high school testing requirements||The Michigan Merit Examination is administered to 11th graders in MI and includes the College Board SAT, WorkKeys® job skills assessment and Michigan-developed Science and Social Studies; the scores of these tests are included on the high schooler’s official transcript.||Homeschool students are not subject to testing requirements for graduation.|
|Michigan high school transcripts||Created by individual schools and available through an e-transcript service. Transcripts will include all attendance information, MME scores, GPA, and any other pertinent information.||Homeschool parents may create their own student transcripts, and may include any information they deem pertinent to colleges, military, and/or future workplace organizations.|
|Michigan high school course credits||In Michigan, the pathway to graduation requires 18 credit hours, with an educational development plan that outlines how those credits may be earned.||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||Individuals who are at least 16 years of age and have been out of a regular school program for one calendar year may be tested.||The same requirements for eligibility apply to homeschoolers as to public school students.|
Homeschool High School Transcript Template
Track your homeschooler’s credits, courses, and accomplishments with this free homeschool high school transcript template.
Enrolling in Public School after Homeschooling
Some families begin homeschooling with the knowledge that they will only be utilizing the option for one year. Others plan to homeschool indefinitely. Either way, it’s good to be prepared for the possible circumstance of enrolling in public school after a period of homeschooling. If that becomes the case for your family, you should be aware that each school will have unique guidelines for enrollment and grade placement. Some may simply let you register your child for the grade you wish him/her to attend. Others may request information on your student’s homeschool curriculum and progress or even require your child to take assessment tests to establish their appropriate grade level.
Additional Resources Related to Homeschooling in Michigan
Have other questions about homeschooling in Michigan? You may find the following pages helpful.