North Carolina
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North Carolina

November 10, 2006

DNPE Seeks Meeting at Police Station

On October 9, 2006, the North Carolina Division of Non-Public Education (DNPE) sent a letter to some homeschooling families in the Raleigh/Johnston County area requesting that they meet with a representative of DNPE on November 2 to review their school records. Parents agreeing to meet with the state official were required to bring their children to the police station along with attendance, immunization, and standardized test records to be reviewed. Parents had the option of also bringing a textbook list, a daily log/lesson plan book, and samples of each student’s work for review by the state official.

After an outcry by homeschoolers, led by North Carolinians for Home Education, DNPE sent out a modified letter on October 11, 2006, changing the location of the meeting to a public library and making the children's attendance optional.

State law does not authorize DNPE to conduct such meetings or require homeschooling families to participate in such meetings. Further, state law only authorizes DNPE to inspect standardized test records, not attendance and immunization records. Parents must maintain attendance and immunization records, but they are not subject to routine inspection. Certainly DNPE has no authority to require parents to bring their children to a police station or anywhere else for any meetings.

What does the law require you to do? Sections 115C-549 and 115C-557 of the General Statutes of North Carolina state that for one year after the standardized testing, the records must be made available for annual inspection at the principal office of the school at all reasonable times. This means that a DNPE official may come to your home, but not enter your home, to inspect the test results. Home School Legal Defense Association recommends that any such inspection be done on the front porch, not inside your home.