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Independent Study

There may be a need for students to participate in an independent study program. Our district provides Short Term Independent Study as well as Long Term Independent Study. This chart can provide a quick view of the differences between these programs for families and help determine which program may be best suited for your child’s unique needs. 

Home and Hospital 

Home and Hospital is a function of our Student Services Department. If you believe your child qualifies for HH you can find that information here: Home and Hospital

Long Term Independent Study 

 Independent Study provides an alternative academic learning opportunity (Ed Code 51225).

  • Independent Study is initiated by a written agreement between the certificated representative, student, parent/legal guardian, and any other person who has direct responsibility to support instruction. 

  • Independent Study provides the opportunity for a student to study at his or her own pace, create a bridge between the school and the community, accept the challenge to excel in areas of special interest, and/or take time away from the on-campus environment. 

  •  Through Independent Study, students and parents become active participants in the learning process, with the general supervision of a certificated teacher representative.

  • Decisions are made collaboratively between the parent, site administration, and district office administration


Students will be enrolled in a remote classroom with a teacher who will oversee their progress through the duration of the student’s time in Independent Study. When a student enters the program, the family must participate in an orientation with the teacher. The teacher will review the family guidelines for participation. 

For transitional kindergarten through 3rd grade, there will be a plan to provide pupils opportunities for daily synchronous instruction.

For grades 4 through 8, there will be a plan to provide opportunities for both daily live interaction and at least weekly synchronous instruction.

For grades 9 through 12, there will be a plan to provide opportunities for at least weekly synchronous instruction.

Live interaction means interaction between the pupil and the teacher, aide or other personnel and may include peers; this interaction may be in person, by internet or phone.

Synchronous instruction means classroom-style instruction, or small group, or one-on-one instruction delivered in person or by internet or phone and involving two-way communication between the pupil and teacher.

If you are interested in the Independent Study Program for your pupil or pupils, or wish to schedule a conference with staff, please contact your child’s principal. 

Students in Independent Study will be given access to textbooks, supplementary materials, computers, and any resources available to all students i.e. health screenings, special education assessments, access to counseling, etc. They are expected to participate in all state assessments as required. Subjects are assessed  Pass/No Pass. 


Good attendance is an essential part of student success.  Only positive attendance is recorded; there are no excused absences.  Should attendance become a problem, the student may be dropped from Independent Study. 

Sequence of Placement

  1. Parents complete the Full Time Independent Study Request Form and return to their school’s front office.  (Parents new to the school district who wish to participate in Independent Study must first register with the school before being considered for Independent Study.)

  2. A meeting is held within 5 School Days with the site Administrator, Parents, and the student to determine if Long Term IS is an appropriate fit for the family’s needs. 

  3. Students must commit to attendance requirements and work completion. 

  4. District Personnel determine approval or denial, and services after receiving recommendations from the site administrator.  Factors for consideration include, but are not limited to: Program capacity, behavior, ability to succeed in the program, prior grades and attendance.

  5. Parents and sites are notified of the decision by the SVUSD District Office. The family completes the Independent Study Master Agreement. Once this is signed, the student is transferred to the IS program. 

Full-Time Independent Study is offered for students K-8 

K-8 Full-Time Independent Study Request Form


  1. The student is prepared to meet the district’s requirements for independent study,

  2. The student is likely to succeed in independent study as well as or better than he/she would in the regular classroom, and

  3. All assigned work will be turned in when it is due.

Short Term Independent Study 

While we encourage families to save travel for holidays and vacations, there are times that it is unavoidable and students must miss school. Short-term independent study is provided for families who will be absent 5-10 days during the school year. Parents should contact their school administrator as SOON as they are aware of planned travel. 

Application for Short Term I.S.