Home Study / Virtual Education

Education Planning

If you are thinking of homeschooling your child, there are many choices. You can elect to work with one complete curriculum, or you can blend a variety of curricula to meet your child's needs.

  • Home Study Educational option refers to an age/grade appropriate complete academic program that uses virtual school, home school, private instruction or combination thereof.
  • Reimbursements are limited to items, directly aligned to the chosen curriculum which do not have a broader use other than the course being studied and are normally provided at no cost by public schools in the District of Columbia, or one of the adjacent counties in Maryland or Virginia (hereafter referred to as the DMV).
  • Become aware of and comply with the country requirements for home-based education. Some countries do not allow home-based education. The sponsor can contact the Judge Advocate General (JAG) office or legal counsel at your installation for more information.
  • Select a home study educational program.

Core Courses and Electives


Parents should be mindful of purchasing only one program to meet educational requirements for a particular content area (e.g., for a foreign language instruction, choose a local group class OR homeschool curriculum OR a specific virtual school, but not all three).

Note: Parents may not mix educational options by utilizing a tuition charging school at post and homeschooling.


For art, music, and P.E., parents may seek out group lessons in the community. Group lessons are lessons already established in the community for groups of children. No private lessons are authorized. For K-6, a maximum of 2 hours a week per subject area may be utilized for P.E., music, or art. For grades 7-12, up to 4 hours a week can be utilized per subject area for P.E., music, or art.

Virtual Education

Review the  Virtual Education document to learn more about virtual learning. Online courses can be used as a stand-alone curriculum, as part of a home study program.

    Allowable Expenses

    • Tuition Charges from an accredited virtual school
    • Course specific textbooks and instructional curriculum guides
    • Consumable course materials.
    • Shipping costs and U.S. tax associated with the educational materials.
    • Costs or fees for course-required or end-of-year examinations/tests, and PSAT for 8th-10th Grades, as consistent with U.S. public school requirements.
    • Surcharges for international fees associated with SAT and ACT.
    • Group lessons for music, art, and non-team related PE.
    • Grades K-6: Two (2) hours a week for each content area.
    • Grades 7-12: Four (4) hours per week for each content area.
    • Access fees charged by libraries, recreation facilities and schools, which provide resources for home study, PI, or VS students including:
    • Libraries (both online and at post) to conduct research for projects and other coursework.
    • Recreation facilities for group PE.
    • At-post schools that allow students not enrolled in the school to participate in education-related curriculum activities, school athletic or extracurricular teams, school group music activities, school group PE activities, or debate team activities.
    • Access to digital learning resources: For a recognized and accredited program of study, an accredited virtual schooling program or other authorized program. The term “digital learning” refers to “any instructional practice that effectively uses technology to strengthen a student’s learning experience and encompasses a wide spectrum of tools and practices,” such as:
    • Interactive learning resources that engage students in math, science, languages, and social studies.
    • Access to online databases, other primary source documents, and eBooks subscriptions for core curriculum courses.
    • The use of data and information to personalize learning and provide targeted supplementary instruction.
    • Online and computer-based assessments.
    • Electronic devices and other rentals such as a computer, laptop, and/or other electronic devices of curriculum-related equipment, and other items such as band instruments, provided the fee does not constitute a lease to own or purchase of any device or instrument.
    • Required testing materials.
    • Fees for a needs-based private instructor associated with a recognized and/or accredited home study program. Sponsors are required to request pre-approval by submitting a request which must identify the specific course and the amount of time necessary for the private instructor to teach the content.

    Non-Allowable Expenses: 

    • Computer equipment/accessories, telescopes, furniture/furnishings.
    • Training for parents.
    • Field trips/school excursions/camps/athletic events regardless of whether the trips are predominantly academic in nature or if participation is mandatory or voluntary.
    • Any form of compensation to the sponsor, parent, or legal guardian.
    • Travel or transportation costs.
    • Personal expenses including, but not limited to, telephone, internet, satellite, cable, or other communication services.
    • Fees for museums, culture events, or performances.
    • U.S. test/registration fees for SAT/ACT or any other college entrance exams.
    • Private and/or specialized lessons for PE, music, and art.
    • Membership in gymnasiums, cultural and/or athletic clubs, spas, or other private clubs.
    • Competitive, community-based sports/teams.
    • Supplies normally purchased by sponsors, parents, or legal guardians.
    • Specialty materials/collectable items.
    • Items shipped to an end-destination/location not supported by NDSP.
    • Transfer fees assessed by banks. Third Party service provider fees (umbrella school/cover schools not providing direct instruction, course, or accredited virtual education)
    • Supplemental instruction allowance
    • Pre-kindergarten enrollment/coursework

    Home Study Education Plan

    This option refers to an age/grade appropriate academic program that uses home study, Private Instruction, Virtual School, or a combination thereof for students in grades KN-12.

    Reimbursements are limited to items directly aligned to the chosen curriculum which do not have a broader use other than the course being studied and are normally provided free of charge in public schools in the District of Columbia, or one (1) of the adjacent counties in Maryland or Virginia, hereafter referred to as the “DMV.

    • Part I of the Home Study Education Plan (fillable PDF) is for documenting to what state standards you will align your curriculum.
    • Part II (an Excel Spreadsheet) of the plan is for detailing what that curriculum is, and what materials that you plan to use/purchase. If you don't have Excel, you can use Google Sheets. Be sure to save that document as an Excel (xlsx) file prior to uploading to the Sponsor Portal or sending to the NDSP via the Home Study Mailbox (NDSP.Homestudy@dodea.edu).

    Educational materials must have a demonstrable connection to the student’s course of instruction. The NDSP will fund materials that specifically build capacity in a specific subject area. However, educational materials that do not directly support or inform that curriculum and instruction may not be reimbursable. To provide an example, games or manipulatives that have a clear connection to the curriculum or subject matter would be reimbursable while other games like Connect 4, Monopoly, or games that are designed specifically for family gameplay or entertainment may not be reimbursable.

    If unsure whether an item is reimbursable you can ask for pre-approval on the Home Study Education Plan Part II. Our program will review and advise whether that item is reimbursable.

    Note: The Home Study Plan Part II is a “living document” meant to be updated as the school year progresses.

    • After you submit your initial HSEP Part II the Home Study team will review your plan and then return that updated, reviewed document to you. The Home Study Team will note on the document that it has been reviewed, and any pre-approvals either approved or denied, and any comments that we have related to that review.
    • Keep the returned HSEP Part II. This returned document will become your current HSEP Part II. If you need to add additional items, update the new form, adding additional items below those that have already been reviewed. Please do not delete previously reviewed items.
    • Submit that updated HSEP Part II to the Home Study team with any new items requested. The team will review and return, and that returned form will become the current HSEP Part II.

      Payment / Reimbursement Requirements

      Submission of Invoices and/or reimbursement requests by the sponsor must adhere to certain formatting criteria for processing by the Resource Management team. It is a sponsor responsibility to assemble the invoice and receipts in a manner and format that clearly identifies the action requested, and, if requesting reimbursement, the correlation of the invoice and corresponding receipt to the Sponsor Claim form document. Formatting should to the maximum extent practicable be presented in a PDF format, or in an Office or similar format. Submitting photographs of (jpg, gif, bmp) receipts and other documents is discouraged, and may delay processing.

      Sponsors should be sure to check with the local NDSP Liaison point of contact to determine if there is a preferred practice at your location for the submission of invoices. If in doubt, please contact the NDSP Resource Management Team . Be sure to include the sponsor’s country of assignment in the subject line of your email.

      Note: Be aware that the NDSP cannot make payments or process reimbursements until the sponsor and family are present at the overseas assignment location.

      Key Points to Remember:

      • Claims for expenses incurred should be submitted by the end of each fiscal year (30 September).
      • All invoices must be in English or have been translated into English. Active-duty sponsors may request translation services via Military One-Source or by calling (800)342-9647.
      • When completing a personal reimbursement claim, please use the exchange rate on the day of service that the invoice was paid.
      • Personal reimbursements will be paid in U.S. dollars via the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) using the EFT information you provided at registration.
      • For currency conversions, please use the Oanda Currency Converter website to find the conversion rate.
      • Allow 30 to 35 business days for processing purposes.
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