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Information on returning to Public School from Private/Home School Setting

Students who have been in Independent Home School or have attended a Category 4 private school (church related satellite school [Gateway, Home Life Academy, etc.] or church related day school that is not accredited by Advance Ed) must be tested before returning to public school. Students who have been attending a Category 1,2, or 3 school do not need to test.

Here are the categories from the State of Tennessee Department of Education website:

Category 1 schools are approved by the State Department of Education

Category 1-SP (previously Category 7) schools are Special Purpose schools encompassing some pre-K programs and transient care facilities serving DCS students.

Category 2 schools are approved by a private school accrediting agency which has been approved by the Tennessee State Board of Education.  Schools holding full accreditation status with an approved agency are approved by the State Department of Education.  Currently the following agencies have been approved by the State Board of Education:

  • Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI)
  • Catholic Diocese of Knoxville
  • Catholic Diocese of Nashville
  • Mississippi Private School Association
  • Southern Conference of the Seventh Day Adventist
  • Tennessee Association of Christian Schools (TACS)
  • Tennessee Association of Non-Public Academic Schools (TANAS)
  • Association of Classical & Christian Schools
  • National Lutheran School Accreditation

Category 3 schools are regionally accredited (by, for example, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)).

Category 4 schools are Church-Related Schools as recognized by associations mentioned in TCA 49-50-801.

Category 5 schools are Acknowledged for Operation.

Schools in Categories 1, 2, 3, and 1-SP are considered to be approved schools for pupils transferring from one school to another and transfer of credits and transcripts.

Students who transfer from Categories 4 and 5 schools back to public school must be tested to determine grade level and number of credits.

Credits can be transferred from out of state online schools if the school is Advance Ed accredited. If it is not, the student will have to test.

Here is the link to access the listing of non-public schools that tells the category of each school in Tennessee: