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Equivalent Instruction - Participation in School Programs


Maine School Administrative District No. 31


The school board acknowledges the provisions for equivalent instruction under Maine law and recognizes that the term "equivalent" is intended to mean "alternate" or "other" and is not intended to mean equal or same.  The school board's intent is to provide for the needs of all children whose parents reside within the boundaries of the school system and intends that services and resources of the school system be made available to equivalent instruction (home-schooled) students within the provisions outlined in this policy, as space permits.

In order to maintain an efficient and orderly school program, the board directs the administration to develop procedures, as appropriate, in support of equivalent instruction programs that have been approved by the Commissioner.  The procedures shall be in accord with the following provisions:

    Required Participation

        A.  Maine Educational Assessment:  If a parent of a student in an equivalent instruction program decides to have the student
             participate in the Maine Educational Assessment (MEA), there must be compliance with all rules and procedures governing
             testing conditions in this public school system.

        B.  Special Education Services:  Such services will be available for eligible special education students in accordance with applicable
             laws and regulations.

    Permitted Participation

        A.  Participation in Regular Classes:  Home instruction students may enroll in specific classes, provided that the student's
             attendance is regular, the student completes all assignments and tests that are required of other students in the class, the
             class is deemed to be age and grade appropriate, and all prerequisite course requirements are met.

        B.  Participation in Co-curricular Activities:  Students may participate in co-curricular activities, such as field trips, assemblies,
             and academically related fairs provided that prior written permission is obtained from both the parent and the principal, and
             that the student has agreed to abide by the same code of conduct as other participating students.

        C.  Participation in Extracurricular Activities:  Students may participate in extracurricular activities provided the student meets
             the same academic, physical examination, insurance, age, and eligibility requirements as regularly enrolled students, the
             student maintains the same code of behavior as other participating students, the student travels to and from team events
             with the team, and the student is not enrolled in another school.

        D.  Use of Facilities and Equipment:  Home schooled students may use school facilities and equipment on the same basis as
             regularly enrolled students provided the use does not disrupt regular school activities, the use has been approved by the school
             principal, the use will not create additional expense to the school system, the use is directly related to the education program,
             and the use does not involve removing furniture or equipment from the school premises.

        E.  Use of School Texts and Library Materials:  Home schooled students may use school texts and library materials, as available,
             provided they are appropriate to the age and grade of the student, they are signed out for the same length of time as for other
             students, and the parent agrees to pay the school system for all lost, damaged or unreturned materials.


        A.  Annual Assessment of Academic Progress:  The school system may allow inclusion of home schoolers in the annual standardized
            assessment programs, provided that there is no interference with, nor disruption of, the regular program, and that there is full
            compliance with all established testing conditions.

        B.  Course Credit and Diploma Eligibility:  No high school credit will be awarded for course work completed through home instruction
             except in such cases where the school principal and guidance counselor have determined that the course work meets all school
            requirements.  Specific course credit requirements, as specified in board policy, must be met prior to the awarding of a high
            school diploma.

        C.  Re-admission to the School Program:  Placement of home schooled students who wish to be (re)admitted to the school program
             will be determined by the school principal who shall consult with members of the professional staff to the extent appropriate. 
             The principal may direct that a test or tests be administered to help determine grade level.  The decision of the principal may
             be appealed to the superintendent whose decision will be final.

                         REGULATIONS, CHAP. 125.1 TITLE 20A MRSA SEC. 5001-A.3

First Reading:     08/17/1994  
Adoption:           09/21/1994