1. Each child of compulsory attendance age who is receiving competent private instruction shall either be evaluated annually by May 1, using a nationally recognized standardized achievement evaluation or other assessment tool developed or recognized by the department of education and chosen by the child's parent, guardian, or legal custodian from a list of approved evaluations or assessment tools provided by the department of education or be evaluated annually in the manner provided in subsection 7. The department shall provide information on the cost of and the administration time required for each of the approved evaluations. The department shall provide, as part of approval procedures for evaluations to be used under this section, a mechanism which permits the introduction and approval of new or alternate methods of educational assessment which meet the requirements of this chapter.
2. A child, who is seven years of age and is receiving competent private instruction or who is placed under competent private instruction for the first time, shall be administered an evaluation for purposes of obtaining educational baseline data.
3. The director of the department of education, or the director's designee, which may include a school district or an area education agency, shall conduct the evaluations required under subsections 1 and 2 for children under competent private instruction. Evaluation shall occur at a time and a place to be determined by the person responsible for conducting the evaluation. Persons conducting the evaluations shall make every reasonable effort to conduct the evaluations at times and places which are convenient for the parent, guardian, or legal custodian.
4. The parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child receiving competent private instruction may be present when the child is evaluated, but only if both the parent, guardian, or legal custodian and the child are under the supervision of the evaluation administrator.
5. The conducting of evaluations shall include, but is not limited to, purchasing of evaluation materials, giving the evaluations, scoring and interpreting the evaluations, and reporting the evaluation results.
6. Except when a child has been enrolled in a public school district under section 299A.8, the parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the child being evaluated shall reimburse the entity conducting the evaluation for no more than the actual cost of evaluation required by this chapter. However, the parent, guardian, or legal custodian is not required to reimburse the evaluating entity for costs incurred as a result of evaluation under section 299A.9.
7. In lieu of annual achievement evaluations, a parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a child may submit, as evidence of adequate academic progress, all of the following:
a. A book of lesson plans, a diary, or other written record indicating the subjects taught and activities in which the child has been engaged.
b. A portfolio of the child's work, including but not limited to, an outline of the curriculum used by the child, copies of homework completed in conjunction with the curriculum and instruction, and copies of evaluations completed by the child which have been produced by the parent, guardian, or legal custodian.
c. Completed assessment evaluations, other than the annual achievement evaluation, if assessment evaluations are administered to a pupil as part of the competent private instruction by the parent, guardian, or legal custodian.
If a parent, guardian, or legal custodian submits evidence under this section, the information shall be reviewed by a qualified, licensed, Iowa practitioner selected as the evaluator by the parent, guardian, or legal custodian and approved by the superintendent of the local school district or the superintendent's designee. The evaluator shall prepare a report based on a review of the child's work submitted, which shall include an assessment of the child's achievement or academic progress levels, and submit a copy of the report to the child's parent, guardian, or legal custodian, the school district of residence of the child, and the department of education. If the evidence demonstrates, in the evaluator's opinion, that the child is achieving adequate progress, the report shall create a presumption that the child is making adequate progress.
91 Acts, ch 200, § 23; 92 Acts, ch 1163, § 68
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