How do I track homeschool attendance?

 In Homeschool, Homeschool Help

How do I track homeschool attendance?

This a very common question in homeschool forums. Honestly, the answer is so simple we tend to overcomplicate it.  The short answer is, mark it on a calendar or a printed attendance tracker.

What you really need to know

Really, what you need to be asking is, “Do I need to track attendance in my state or for my umbrella school?” If the answer to that is yes then you need to know if you’re tracking days, hours, or both. Don’t know off the top of your head? That’s ok! You can check out your state’s laws here. 

Check the resources you have access to already

If your umbrella school requires you to track, they likely have a form for you to use. Statheros Academy provides an attendance log to our families to submit your attendance at the end of a year and a free attendance tracker that can be used on your computer or printed and filled out by hand. If you are already enrolled with Statheros Academy, snag yours from the Handbook.

So many options

Many pre-printed, printable, and online planners include ways to track attendance. You can find so many online. Most online planners will mark attendance as you mark school work as being completed, these have the ability to print this off if you need to turn it in or if you just want to keep in your records. 

One option is to keep a learning journal where either you or your kids document the work that is completed each day. At the end of the month you can go back through the month and look at all of your accomplishments and then do a tick-tally for each day completed.

You can also just put a mark, like a smiley face or an x, on a wall calendar when you have completed school for the day.

Nitty-gritty details

In Colorado we must complete 172 educational days averaging 4 hours per day.  For a while, I actually wrote the number of hours for each kid on a separate sheet so I could see how much time I was spending a day on homeschooling our kids.  I would then add up the days and hours at the end of each month.  I wasn’t including all the other educational activities like chores, or pet care, or helping mom with meals, or church, or helping with siblings, or library or grocery trips. After a while I just started marking the days off – each kid did have their own attendance sheet because some days one kid would be sick but the others could do school. Now, we use an online planner because it’s easier with my kids being older and able to mark their own school as completed.

When you pull your kids out of school after it’s started

One more note for those of you bringing your kids home to learn from a public or private school. The days they completed in that school count towards their required number of attendance. Make sure to give the credit for the work they have completed! You do not need to start at day 1 when making the switch from traditional school to homeschool. 

Top tips

We highly recommend maintaining current and accurate attendance records for your homeschool at all times. Take time to think about what system you want to implement so that you will be consistent. Make sure that it suits you and will work for you. Don’t try to fit into someone else’s box and do something just because it works well for someone else. Find the way that you will succeed in order to keep good records! 

Enjoy the Journey!
Rachel Stevens

I would love to work with you and help you in your homeschool journey!

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