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Home Instruction

At TST BOCES, we understand that learning takes place in a variety of ways and in different environments. Through our Home Instruction service, we work with districts to ensure that home-schooled students are meeting the academic requirements set forth by the New York State Commissioner of Education.

In addition to monitoring compliance with the commissioner’s regulations, TST BOCES coordinates the receipt and review of required documentation, such as letters of intent, individualized home instruction plans, quarterly reports and assessments. We compile this information and maintain databases of all home-schooled students as well as individual files for each student.

The Home Instruction service assists parents with questions pertaining to home instruction and helps them understand requirements (see our overview of responsibilities). BOCES regularly notifies districts of the compliance status of home school programs.

School districts that subscribe to the TST BOCES Home Instruction service include Candor, Dryden, Ithaca, Groton, Lansing, Newfield, South Seneca, Trumansburg and Morrisville-Eaton.



All youth who become six years of age on or before December 1st in any school year are required to attend upon full-time instruction. All minors are required to remain in attendance during any given school year until the last day of session in the school year in which they turn sixteen years of age except as otherwise provided in EL §3205(3).  In other words, young adults who turn sixteen on or after July 1st must continue full-time instruction through June 30th after their sixteenth birthday.

The substantial equivalent of 180 days of instruction shall be provided each school year. In the event that less than 80% of the coursework planned for any quarter has been completed, a written explanation is required.

  • Grades K-6: 900 hours of instruction per school year (approximately 225 hours per quarter)

  • Grades 7-12: 990 hours of instruction per school year (approximately 250 hours per quarter)

Please include the following information on every document that you submit:

  • Your child’s name, grade, and physical address

  • Name of School District in which you reside

  • Parent or guardian name(s), phone number(s) and email address(es)

  • Heading to identify type of document (Letter of Intent, IHIP, 1st Quarterly Report, etc.)

You are responsible for keeping copies of ALL paperwork sent to this office. If your paperwork will be late, please notify us via email or with a phone call to 607-257-1555.

Document Requirements

  • A Notice of Intent is due on July 1 or within 14 days after commencing home instruction. 

  • An Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP) is due August 1 or within four weeks after commencing home instruction, whichever is later. Please visit NYSED Commissioner's Regulation 100.10 and review the required topics according to the student's grade level. 

  • Four Quarterly Reports are due throughout the school year spaced in even and logical periods.

  • An annual assessment is due at the time of filing the fourth quarterly report. Students completing their education through home instruction do not earn an accredited “diploma” but may pursue a Letter of Equivalency.

Please visit our Documents and Resources page for templates of these required documents.

Annual Assessments

Assessment requirements vary by grade. New York State Education Law requires that students in grades 9-12 be tested every year and that students in grades 4-8 be tested at least every other year. It is recommended that a New York State certified teacher administer the test, although the parent may do so. You are responsible for purchasing the test and arranging for it to be given. Allow ample time for ordering and shipping. For more information, including links to test publisher websites, please visit the Documents and Resources page.

Graduating/Letter of Equivalency

Regular submission of complete documentation as per the Home Instruction regulation is required for all four years of high school if you wish to request a Superintendent’s Letter of Equivalency for college, dual credit at a community college, or Tuition Assistance (TAP program). On-line diplomas earned while residing in New York State are not valid. For more information, please visit our Transcripts/Graduation page.

Home Instruction Information


FreeRyde with TCAT

Attention home instruction families! The TCAT is offering an opportunity that you're not going to want to miss! Beginning on May 29, 2022, the TCAT is offering its FreeRyde program for all school-aged students (including seniors through Summer 2022.

This program will take learning on the road! With the FreeRyde program, your students can:

● Gain confidence by riding public transit.

● Enjoy the summer-only route 22 service and travel to the parks on the outskirts of town.

● Engage with members of their communities.

● Learn how to plan for taking a trip.

● Other trip training that may be useful.

To sign up, please fill out this form. Upon receiving your response, our department will reach out to you to confirm the pickup date/time you've indicated.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to our department!

Visit here to learn more!

Contact Us

Dori Biata Headshot

Dori Biata
Senior Typist / Homeschool Instruction
(607) 257-1551 x. 7210

Our Location

Home Instruction Office
555 Warren Road, Building J
Ithaca, NY 14850