Homeschool Record Keeping -- What to Save

There are three areas of homeschool record keeping that we need to be diligent in. Some papers we need to save because of state requirements. Other information can help our children attend college. Day to day papers can help us plan our next school year.

Important Papers

Each state is different in their requirements for homeschool record keeping. To find what your state requires look on the HSLDA web site or find out from your state homeschool organization. Here is a list of important papers that you might be required to save;

  • Intent to homeschool is a letter that says you plan to teach your child. Some states require you to file a letter with your school district. It is a good idea to ask for a signed copy to keep with your records.
  • The test scores from standardized tests.
  • Save your child's immunization records.
  • Emergency contact information is important to keep up to date especially if your child goes on field trips with your co-op or another group of people.
  • A daily log of homeschooling hours is required by some states. You will need to list the days the child is homeschooled and the hours for each day.
  • A list of the textbooks and books your child reads.

High School

When your child is in high school your homeschool record keeping is more detailed. If your child plans to go to college you will want to know what the college requires for entrance.

At the very least you will want to make a transcript of the classes that your child has taken. A transcript is a list of classes that your child has taken at each grade level. It also includes the grade and credits that the child has received.

In high school is also important to note anything your child is involved in such as;

  • jobs and volunteer work
  • leadership positions
  • awards that your child has received
  • extracurricular activities

What you list can help your child attend college.

Other Important Papers

Homeschool record keeping can also include a scrapbook or portfolio of your child's work. Each month pick out the best papers to set aside for the portfolio. Date each paper. Then at the end of the school year pick out the best papers to put in a notebook or file folder. The information should show the progression of learning that took place.

In your notebook you and your child might like to write down field trips that you went on during the year. Glue in brochures of places you go.

You and your child might also like to have a record of books that they read and liked. Some colleges like to see a list of classics that your child has read during the high school years.

You don't have to save every paper that your child has done since kindergarten. You will want to keep some papers though. Keep enough papers from each year to show that your child is progressing.

Why Homeschool Record Keeping

When I review papers that my child has done I can see the areas where my child is doing well and where he needs more instruction. Keeping records of what we have done helps me plan.

Records are also important if you ever plan to place your child into a school setting.

The information that you save during your child's high school years can help your child go to college.

Where to Store Information

Some people like to store everything on the computer. There are even some online programs that will keep track of your school schedule and grades. You can also download forms from the internet.

If you store your records on an online file or in a document file on your computer remember to make a printed copy. Or make a copy on a CD. You will want to have a copy if your computer crashes.

Other people use file folders for information.

Other families use day planners for organizing important information.

Homeschool record keeping is useful in planning your school year and is necessary if you ever need to make an accounting of your homeschooling.

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