Annual Assessments – Tips and Resources

Early spring is the time of year many homeschoolers begin to schedule their children's annual assessments. We have several articles -- see the featured articles below -- to help you through this process which may be particularly reassuring and instructive for new(er) homeschoolers.

Thanks to the passage of a homeschool freedom bill in June 2022, the home education law recognizes that students must demonstrate individual progress commensurate with "age, ability, and/or disability." This small change to the language in RSA 193-A makes a huge difference for thousands of home-educated children. Our kids are not judged on an artificial standard or compared to anyone else, and there are many options to show your child's progress.

The law also changed to explicitly state that the annual assessment and portfolio remain the private property of the family, further underscoring that home education is independent and not subject to the review, judgement, or approval of public officials.


We have an Assessments FAQ and video to help make the whole process easy to understand and painless.

We also have suggestions about how to compile your children's portfolios, which may be the basis for a teacher evaluation. All homeschoolers are required to maintain a portfolio, regardless of the selected annual assessment method. GSHE leader, Amanda Weeden published this fantastic video about portfolios which can help you through the process and make it easy and simple.

Take a look at our Testing & Evaluations page for an overview on your options for the annual assessment. We have details and links throughout the page, including lists of providers you may consider. Families have three broad options for the annual assessment: 1) a national student achievement test of your choice, 2) an evaluation completed by a teacher of your choice, or 3) something else agreed upon with your Participating Agency that shows your child's progress.

Also, there is also no specific due date -- you determine when it is appropriate as long as the assessment is done annually. Maybe your child started homeschooling mid-year and you are using work done at the other environment as part of the portfolio to show progress. Administer the assessment when it is reflective of your child's academic year

Regardless of your assessment method, homeschoolers keep the results private and do not share them with their local public school, Participating Agency, or any other official. Add the assessment to your children's portfolios as part of their educational records and keep it all in a safe place for a minimum of two years.

Three Broad Options

Option #1: National Student Achievement Test
Home educators may choose from a number of national achievement tests such as Basic Achievement Skills Inventory (SASI), the California Achievement Test (CAT), the Stanford Test, the Iowa Basic Skills Test (ITBS), the Personalized Achievement Summary System (PASS), the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), the Classic Learning Test, the TerraNova, and others. There are different types of tests -- some are online and others are paper/pencil; some are timed and others aren't; some require a proctor but many don't; some are aligned to Common Core while others are not; and the range of subjects covered vary by test. Consult the providers' website for more information. While the array of choices may be a bit overwhelming, it allows you to select what best reflects your child's progress and individual learning experiences. Many test service providers offer samples or practice exams for your review.

Option #2: Teacher Evaluation
New Hampshire certified teachers, someone with reciprocal certification, or a teacher currently teaching in a NH nonpublic (private) school may perform a homeschool annual evaluation. These assessments typically include a review of the portfolio including work-product samples from the year such as worksheets, writing samples, videos, computer programs, tests, creative pieces, field trip records, and fine-arts performances. We recommend families have a discussion with potential evaluators to determine if the person is a good "fit" for your assessment needs. Families should contact evaluators well in advance to discuss the teacher's experience and specialties, evaluation process, cost, availability, and to confirm credentials. It is also an opportunity to have any particular questions addressed which may be particularly important if your child has a learning disability.We have curated an extensive list of teachers who offer evaluation services to homeschoolers; check it out to find one right for you.

Option #3: Individualized Measurement of Achievement
Independent homeschoolers have a third "other" option for showing "progress commensurate with age, ability, and/or disability." If you don't wish to do a national student achievement test or a teacher evaluation, you may elect to do something else, agreed upon with your Participating Agency. Examples of alternatives are the Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT), the SAT for a grade level other than 11th grade, a report card or transcript from a third-party education provider, or a capstone project or presentation. If you go this route, get the agreement in writing so there is no confusion later.

As you prepare for the assessment, be assured that you know your children best and are fully empowered and capable of making educational decisions for them. Try not to worry about them behind "behind" their peers. Unfortunately, many students have struggled the last few years, including public-school students. This has been an unprecedented time for everyone and our kids will progress at their own pace, as best they can.

Deep breath... You've got this!