Special Needs Department

Overview of the Special Needs Department

The SCAIHS Special Needs Program is for any student, in grades K-12, who is functioning substantially above or below grade level or has a disability that causes educational difficulties. This student usually requires an educational plan that varies from that which is traditionally followed by students. Accommodations for assignments and testing, as well as frequent remediation, are often needed. All of these things are permitted when the student is enrolled in this program. In many ways, the Special Needs Program is also for the parent. You will be facing many new challenges as you home school this student. Whether it is choosing curriculum, finding a new way to re-teach a concept, or working around deficit areas, our trained staff is here to assist you. Their encouragement will help you to succeed in this challenging, but rewarding, endeavor.

Testing Requirements:

You can find our testing requirements HERE.

SAT & ACT Test Accommodations

SAT Test Accommodations

2018-2019 Test Dates Accommodations Request and Documentation Must Be Submitted to the Special Needs Department by:
August 25, 2018 June 23, 2018
October 6, 2018 August 4, 2018
November 3, 2018 September 1, 2018
December 1, 2018 September 29, 2018
March 9, 2019

May 4, 2019

June 1, 2019

January 5, 2019

March 3, 2019

March 30, 2019


ACT Test Accommodations

2018-2019 Test Dates Accommodations Request and Documentation Must Be Submitted to the Special Needs Department by:
December 8, 2018 September 29, 2018
February 9, 2019 December 1, 2018
April 13, 2019 February 2, 2019
June 8, 2019 March 30, 2019
July 13, 2019 May 4, 2019

Students need to register for the specific ACT date they wish to test.  Somewhere on the actual registration, it will ask if they need accommodations to which they should answer yes. It may ask for some information.

Our State Code is 41

SCAIHS Code is 411104

Organization:  South Carolina Association of Independent Home Schools

Contact:  Nancy Willoughby, Director of Special Needs Department


Once you have registered and requested accommodations, you will receive an email from ACT that has the testing date and the student’s ACT ID #.  You will then forward that email to us at SCAIHS. We will send you a Consent to File form that must be signed and sent back to us.  When we have received the consent to file form, we will then be able to upload the support documentation for the accommodation request directly to ACT.

Brigance Achievement Test

Each year, SCAIHS members participate in various forms of standardized testing. SCAIHS counselors strive to present our members with the best testing options from which to choose, in order to provide them with the results that will be most useful in planning for next year’s goals, as well as identifying areas of strengths and weaknesses.  After carefully examining many tests and scores, we feel that the Brigance Inventory of Basic Skills, if scored without the use of the Norm Reference Tool, does not meet the qualifications of a standardized test.  If you have any questions or concerns, please email Nancy Willoughby, nwilloughby@scaihs.org.

Reporting Requirements: (All reporting is done online.)

  1. Enter course information online
  2. Complete January 7th progress report and attendance
  3. Complete June 7th progress report and attendance
  4. Send or upload a copy of standardized test scores.


Grading Scale

You can read more about our Grading Scale HERE.



How do I enroll my student in the Special Needs Program?
When filling out the application to SCAIHS, indicate on the Student Enrollment that you desire to enroll the student in the Special Needs Program.

What fee is charged for this service?
In addition to the regular SCAIHS fees, there is an annual special needs fee for each child enrolled in the program. Your membership application will automatically calculate the fees.

Will the student be labeled “Special Needs” and have to permanently remain in the program?
No. The student is never labeled. When you have determined that the student is functioning at grade level and the more flexible educational plan allowed by this enrollment is no longer needed, enrollment in the Special Needs Program is not necessary.

How do I know which materials would be the best for my student?
Finding the best materials for a special needs student can be overwhelming! That is why our trained and experienced staff is available to help you. Curriculum consultations are available, by request, after a SCAIHS application is submitted. SCAIHS also has a Bookstore equipped with hundreds of books you may view.

Do I need an outside consultant for my special needs student?
The SCAIHS Special Needs staff meet Home School Legal Defense’s requirements and recommendations for educational consultants. Another consultant is not required; however, every special needs student is unique. Depending on the nature of your child’s needs, a local educational consultant/therapist may be helpful.

Can a special needs student earn a college prep or general studies high school diploma?
It depends on the academic level of the student. If the student is able to successfully complete the content and work for the courses required for these diplomas, one may be earned. (See SCAIHS high school department.)

What is offered for a student that cannot do high school level work?
Some special needs high school students may earn an Occupational Certificate. There are more details about the Occupational Certificate on the High School Department page.

May special needs students participate in graduation?
Any student who earns a diploma, Occupational Certificate, or Certificate of Attendance may participate in the annual SCAIHS graduation ceremony.