October 30, 2009

HSLDA Helps New Homeschoolers Avoid Truancy Charge

When Mrs. Patton’s son (name changed to protect privacy) developed swine flu and pneumonia, and the local school district was less than helpful in accommodating his illness, she decided to begin homeschooling him.

However, she didn’t immediately notify the school district of her intent. Under Georgia law she has 30 days to file a notice of intent after commencing a homeschool program. She was contacted several times by a truant officer who wanted to meet with her, and she told him that she was homeschooling. Before her 30 days were up, she filed her notice of intent. On the same day, she also received a summons to appear in court four days later to answer truancy charges.

Three days before she was to appear in court, Mrs. Patton contacted HSLDA for help. We reviewed her problem, and with our assistance the charges were dismissed at the initial appearance.

HSLDA recommends that if parents withdraw their children mid-year to homeschool, that they submit letters of withdrawal before they begin home education. If you have any questions about how this is done, please visit our website or contact our national office. Members have access to a sample withdrawal letter on our website.