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The Legal Ins and Outs of Homeschooling: Be Informed

Written by Education Lead
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legal 1143114 1280Homeschooling is legal in all 50 states. But specific home education laws vary from state to state- and country to country- so be informed and know your rights. Check your country or state’s laws to be sure you know what is required. The Homeschool Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) has compiled a list of the U.S. state requirements (click here).

High and Moderate Regulation States

In the United States five states have high regulation: Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Variation in requirements include such things as notification of intent to homeschool, submission of certain test scores, and curriculum approval.

Low Regulation States

Most states have low to moderate regulation, and some have no regulation at all. States with the greatest homeschool freedom are Alaska, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, Oklahoma, and Texas. These homeschool-friendly states have zero requirement for parents to initiate contact with state or school officials. Be on guard though. Some state and school officials in these states over-step their legal bounds and try to coerce parents into complying with their demands for records or contact.

Regulations Regarding Travel During the School Year

If you travel out of the country for more than one month during the school year be sure to know your legal rights. Contact HSLDA (click here).

If you reside in another state for more than one month it is recommended by HSLDA that you follow the requirements of that state during the time you are there. If you are away less than one month, follow the laws of your home state as per usual.

International Homeschooling Laws

Not all countries allow parents to homeschool their children. When considering moving to or living in a foreign country for part of the school year, check their policies on education. The freedoms we too often take for granted, the freedoms many of us strive to protect in the United States, are not so easily found abroad. HSLDA has a list of nations and their requirements (click here).

Knowing your legal rights regarding homeschooling your children is imperative.