The Home School Court Report
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Certified Tutor Option

A Home School Legal Defense Association member recently contacted the Hanover County Public Schools about home schooling her child under the certified tutor option. The district superintendent’s office requested a meeting with the mother, and stated that she would need to supply a description of her curriculum, a notice of intent, and a test or evaluation annually.

In a letter to the district superintendent, attorney Scott Woodruff explained that under Code of Virginia § 22.1-254(A), when a child is taught by a tutor or teacher of approved qualifications, it is not necessary to meet with the district superintendent or supply any of the items other home schoolers file annually. The certified tutor option is actually listed twice in the statutes, once under the home school statute (§ 22.1-254.1), and again independent of the home school concept under § 22.1-254(A). A parent who home schools his or her child under § 22.1-254(A) need not comply with the requirements that ordinarily apply to home schooling under § 22.1-254.1.

Religious Exemption Questions Revised

Prince William County is one of the few school districts that still require a hearing before granting a religious exemption from public school attendance. In the past, the school attorney attempted to ask a number of objectionable and personal questions during these hearings. Recently, HSLDA attorney Scott Woodruff discussed these questions with the school attorney, and explained the basis for his objection to them. As a result, objectionable questions were not asked at the first hearing of the school year, conducted on August 25. HSLDA hopes to get a final decision on the religious exemption request for that family in the near future.