Getting Started Homeschooling in Tennessee

We know the process of understanding how to begin homeschooling can be an extremely overwhelming process.  We hope this information will help you begin to see how you can get started today.
 
There are 3 primary considerations when planning to homeschool.
  • What is required of the parent to homeschool?
  • What methods of homeschooling are available?
  • What are my responsibilities?

Legal Requirements*

The laws relating to homeschooling can be found in Tennessee Code Annotated § 49-6-3050.
 
In Tennessee, you are required to give a minimum of 180 days of instruction for at least 4 hours per day for each school year.  Once a student reaches the High School level, they must also earn credits by completing courses in specific subject areas as defined by the Department of Education in order to earn a valid High School diploma.
 
The parent's level of education can also play a part in which methods are available to a family.

Tennessee Homeschooling Methods

Tennessee recognizes 6 types of non-public school options.  Two (2) of which pertain specifically to homeschooling.

Independent Homeschool

This method requires a parent to submit a "Notice of Intent" directly to their local education agency (LEA).  The LEA is the entity responsible for public education where you would be zoned to attend a public school.  You will contact your local public school system office or board of education for assistance with this process. 
While parents are required to have at least a High School diploma or GED to homeschool, certain allowances are made in the law where instruction can be given by someone other than the parent that meets this requirement.

 

Umbrella Homeschool (through a church-related private school)

The Tennessee Code Annotated defines a Category IV: Church-related Private School.  Many of the Category IV schools in Tennessee offer a homeschool program allowing parents to homeschool under the "umbrella" or authority of said school.  These Category IV schools are frequently referred to as simply Umbrella Schools.  Each umbrella will offer unique programs to meet the varying needs of families.  Some can assist those with special needs.  Some offer sports, extra curriculars or technology courses.  Some require end-of-year testing and some do not.
 
Approximately 80% of families that homeschool in Tennessee choose an umbrella school for the flexibility offered and for testing requirements are better align with the families educational goals in addition to the ease of transition from the public school system.
 

Choosing Axis Academy as your Umbrella School

Enrollment with Axis Academy is a 2-step process. 

Step 1 - Apply

During the application process you will provide some information about you and your family and describe your general homeschooling goals for each student.  With the application, you will also provide a brief education plan which will include which curriculum or instruction you intend to use for each subject.  If you don't know at the time you apply and need assistance or would like some direction in selecting suitable curriculum, our advisors will be happy to assist during this process. 

K-8th Application Fee:

A one-time fee of $25.00 for each new family.

9th-12th Application Fee

A one-time fee of $50.00 for each new** high school student.  This fee is for credit management preparation and transcript review.
 

Step 2 - Enroll

Once the application process is complete and you have been accepted, it is time to enroll!  Enrollment will include the process of completing and submitting the rest the necessary forms.  These include:
  • The Policy Manual & Student Handbook Review Form
  • Student Transfer Forms
  • Immunization Records or a signed waiver form.
  • Completed Education Plan
  • Support Organization Form
 
K-8th Enrollment Fee:
$100.00 for the first student
$30.00 for each additional student (up to 3)
Families with more than 3 children are welcome to enroll all children.  There is a maximum enrollment fee of $190.00 per family.
 
9th-12th High School Fees:
$250.00 per student
$50.00 senior fee for graduating seniors.  This includes transcript and diploma preparation.
 
 
*The information on this site is not intended to offer or imply any legal advice.  Any legal concerns should be directed to qualified legal counsel.
**High school students that unenroll and reenroll with Axis Academy will be considered new and the new student fee will apply.  This fee does not apply to existing high school students simply enrolling for the next year.