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Minnesota

January 7, 2008

Public School Official Attempts to Recruit Homeschoolers

Faribault Public Schools’ new Curriculum Director Dave Harwell is “reaching out” to homeschoolers in his local district. Near the end of 2007, he mailed letters to over 50 homeschooling families, inviting them to discuss enrolling their children in the public school part-time for art courses and extracurricular activities.

Director Harwell commented that though he wants to build a strong relationship between the district and resident families, he also recognizes that the district’s approximately 115 homeschooled students are pulling $575,000 of state funding from the Faribault schools. Enrolling homeschoolers part-time would allow the district to reclaim at least a portion the $5,000 per student rate from the state.

While Minnesota law does allow homeschooled students access to public school activities (see “State Laws Concerning Participation of Homeschool Students”), in Public School Activities Home School Legal Defense Association encourages parents to remember that even part-time enrollment in the public school typically requires parents to relinquish at least some control of their children’s education and also increases the potential risk of possible adverse interactions with other state agencies.