Homeschooling in Iowa

Instructor: Shelby Golden
You have many options if you're interested in homeschooling in Iowa. Check out this article to learn about the regulations governing these options and find out how you can begin homeschooling your children.

Homeschool Options in Iowa

The state of Iowa offers several different options for homeschooling, allowing you to select the level of independence you'd like to achieve. All options keep you in compliance with Iowa's school attendance laws, which require students to attend school from the ages of 6-16. You can choose from:

Independent Private Instruction

The Independent Private Instruction (IPI) method of homeschooling allows you to teach up to 4 unrelated students. You don't have to file any forms to report your child's participation in this program, though the state does advise that you let your local school district know of your intentions to homeschool. Additionally, school districts may request information about the names of students and instructors participating in this form of school. You will need to provide instruction in:

  • Mathematics
  • Reading and language arts
  • Science
  • Social studies

You are not required to provide standardized tests scores every year if you choose this option. However, this option does not offer students the ability to take advantage of activities offered by public schools, except for driver's education.

Competent Private Instruction with a Licensed Practitioner

You will need to file a Form A with the school district in order to make use of a supervising teacher in the home instruction of your children. You can find this form on the Iowa Department of Education Website (

If you use this option, you will need to provide your children with instruction for 148 days over the course of a school year. The teacher who is assisting you will also need to monitor your students' progress as they work on their studies. This option gives you the ability to duel-enroll your children, giving them greater access to classes and various activities at public schools as well as special options for enrollment at community colleges.

Competent Private Instruction with a Non-Licensed Instructor

This option allows you to teach your children without the oversight of a licensed teacher. Your children will still need to be taught for at least 148 days in a school year. There are annual assessment options with this form of homeschooling. You can opt to have your children complete standardized tests, submit a portfolio of their schoolwork or submit report cards related to the work they've accomplished throughout the year.

If you choose to submit student assessments on an annual basis, your children will be eligible for dual enrollment. You will need to complete a Form A if you intend to take advantage of dual enrollment.

Home School Assistance Program

The Home School Assistance Program (HSAP) was set up by the state of Iowa to give students access to public school resources even though they are homeschooled. This program is available to students who take part in competent private instruction. Children enrolled in this program are able to access text books or take advantage of services offered by licensed teachers in their local school district.

Homeschool Help in Iowa

No matter what homeschooling option you choose, you can find a complete curriculum through's homeschool courses. These self-paced resources cover the core subjects your middle and high school students need to study. Younger children can work on courses specially designed to help them understand science, language arts and math.

You can also find study guides designed to help kids who opt to complete standardized tests, such as the ACT and the SAT. These courses use easy-to-understand video lessons to help your children review the subjects covered by these exams. Kids can get the practice they need applying their knowledge through interactive quizzes and tests. They can even get in contact with expert instructors if they need any help.

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