January 11, 2005

New District Policy Adds Unlawful Requirements

On January 11, 2005, the St. Johns county school board voted on a revised homeschool policy that included the following two provisions: (1) every new homeschool family in the district must meet with school officials to discuss the state homeschool requirements, and (2) the portfolio must include a daily log of instructional and study hours.

HSLDA reviewed the policy and determined that these two provisions are not part of Florida law. Therefore, the school district has no authority to impose them upon homeschoolers. After local HSLDA members expressed their concern over these new provisions the St. Johns school board agreed to remove the requirement that parents meet with school officials, but continued to insist upon the expansion of the portfolio requirement.

HSLDA attorney Chris Klicka wrote to the school board and explained that they do not have the authority to add a daily log requirement, insisting that it be removed before the board's vote. After copies of Attorney Klicka's letter were distributed to the board members they reversed their position by removing the entire homeschool policy from consideration, acknowledging that homeschoolers need only follow the state laws for homeschooling, not local requirements.