Home School Court Report
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No. 5

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Two Districts Demand Records

Homeschooling families in Martin and McCreary counties were recently surprised to receive a letter from their local director of pupil personnel (DPP) just as the 2006-2007 school year came to a close. These letters demanded that the families come to the district office and provide copies of attendance records, report cards, and curriculum.

Home School Legal Defense Association Staff Attorney Thomas Schmidt immediately contacted both school districts, informing them that homeschooling parents are not legally required to provide any of the documentation sought by the districts. Schmidt further clarified that a homeschooling family’s curriculum is not subject to approval by the local DPP.

While Kentucky law does require homeschooling families to maintain attendance records, the state’s “Best Practice Document” does not require parents to regularly submit these records. Parents should be required to submit homeschool records only if they fail to submit their notice of intent within two weeks of the beginning of the school year, or if there is some evidence that the family is not conducting a bona fide homeschool program.

After receiving the letters from HSLDA, both school districts dropped their demands. HSLDA regularly receives contact from Kentucky members dealing with letters such as the one sent by Martin and McCreary counties. Many times the cause of the mailing is simply an overzealous district attempting to harass homeschooling families. If you receive a letter from your school district demanding that you submit records, please call HSLDA.

— by Thomas J. Schmidt