WARNING: This article explains the new homeschooling regulation in general and gives suggestions for fulfilling your legal obligations. This is not a legal opinion nor is it legal advice. For information specific to your situation, consult a lawyer. This article does not replace the content of the official guide mentioned in section 459.5.1 of the Education Act, which will be developed by the Minister and will be released no later than July 1, 2019. See AQED’s strategy.
A few remarks and recommendations to keep in mind for all your interactions with the Minister’s representatives:
Documents and written communications
Write short documents and use simple language.
Always keep a copy of your written communications.
If you wish, include AQED in CC on your communications with the Minister at obligations [at] aqed.qc.ca. This will allow us to better identify best practices and to share them with everyone.
You can seek inspiration from our examples and templates to write your documents. (See the appendices or visit our website at www.aqed.qc.ca/en/getting-started.)
Requests for more information
The regulation specifies that the government can ask you for more information if it determines that your documents are incomplete. The request will be made in writing and will contain recommendations. You can base your correction on these recommendations or propose other solutions. You will have 30 days to submit a new document.
Meetings with the Minister’s representative
They may be held “by any means allowing all participants to communicate immediately amongst themselves”, in other words, in person, by phone, or virtually (Skype, Facetime, etc.).
Have someone of your choosing accompany you, to support you should the need arises. The regulation gives you the right to do so.
We suggest that you note the main conclusions of your meeting and send them to the Minister to be assured of your mutual understanding. We also invite you to send a copy to obligations [at] aqed.qc.ca.
Language of communication with the Minister’s representatives
Communication with the Minister’s representatives is not subject to Bill 101; you may communicate with them in the language of your choice (subject to the availability of staff who speak the language). The Ministry of Education has staff that can respond in English.
Language of instruction
You may teach in the language of your choice and submit the child’s work in any language if you choose the portfolio evaluation method, regardless of which school board you are registered with. However, an education at home in English does not constitute in itself an eligibility to an English school education. Your child must attend a French school if they return to public school, unless they have a valid exemption. It must also be noted that the school board’s services are subject to Bill 101 and you cannot request services from an English school board without eligibility.
We encourage families to report global progress on overall learning compared to the previous year.
The regulation specifies that progress reports will be examined “taking into consideration the capabilities and learning project of the child.” You may thus respect the rhythm and needs of your child without following the official progression of learning or grade level, as long as they are progressing and you are able to show or explain their progress.
If you have problems, contact AQED.