Are you considering homeschooling your child? You can do it! As you get started, it’s important to make sure you comply with the education laws where you live. This page helps you understand how to homeschool legally—step by step.


Compulsory school attendance age

When your child reaches his or her 7th birthday, you must begin complying with Kansas's compulsory attendance law.

Once your child reaches his or her 18th birthday, your child is no longer required to obey the school laws. A child can be exempted at age 16 if a simple process is followed, mostly involving the consent of the parents.

Please note: when you enroll your child in a public school, he or she is subject to compulsory attendance law immediately, no matter what age he or she is, until you withdraw him or her from public school.


Withdrawing your child from his or her current school

If you want to start homeschooling during the school year and your child is currently enrolled in a public or private school, HSLDA recommends that you formally withdraw your child from that school. If you are going to start homeschooling after the school year is over, and your child is considered enrolled for the following year, we recommend that you withdraw your child before the next school year begins, so that the school does not mark your child as absent or truant.

We invite you to become a member of HSLDA to receive specific advice about withdrawing your child from school and starting to homeschool. Local schools may have specific forms or withdrawal procedures. HSLDA members are eligible to receive individualized advice about whether complying with those procedures is advisable or required. HSLDA members are also eligible to use the sample letter of withdrawal for their state, available in Member Resources, to correspond with school officials.

We generally recommend that any correspondence with authorities be sent “Certified Mail—Return Receipt Requested.” Keep copies of the withdrawal letter and any other paperwork or correspondence, and any green postal receipts, for your personal records.

Note: If your child has never attended a public or private school, this section does not apply.


Complying with your state’s homeschool law

In Kansas, your homeschool will be treated as a private school. There are two ways to do this.

Homeschooling as a non-accredited private school:
To homeschool as a non-accredited private school, you’ll need to follow these legal requirements:

Choose a name for your school. Register the name and address with the State Board of Education, and keep a copy of that registration for your personal files.

You must only register your private school’s name once, when you start homeschooling.

Note: Always refer to your homeschool as a private school when dealing with officials.

Your child’s teacher(s) must be “competent.” That includes you, if you are teaching your child directly.

You are required to teach your child for about the same period of time as the public schools. That’s usually 186 days.

There are no specific subject requirements in Kansas law. However, most schools teach (at a minimum):

  • reading,
  • writing,
  • arithmetic,
  • geography,
  • spelling,
  • English grammar and composition,
  • civil government,
  • United States and Kansas history,
  • patriotism and the duties of a citizen,
  • health, and
  • hygiene.

The law requires that your instruction be planned and scheduled.

 

Homeschooling as a satellite of a private school:
In the case of In Re Wilms, a Shawnee County court ruled that a family operating their homeschool program as a satellite of—and accountable to—a local private school board was in compliance with the compulsory attendance laws. This suggests that it would be possible for families in other counties to operate in a similar manner.

Members can contact HSLDA for more detailed guidance about this potential option.


Records

If your state has any specific recordkeeping requirements, they are listed above. Regardless of your state’s recordkeeping requirements, HSLDA recommends that you keep detailed records of your homeschool program. These records may be helpful if you face an investigation regarding your homeschooling or your student needs to furnish proof of education.

These records should include attendance records, information on the textbooks and workbooks your student used, samples of your student’s schoolwork, correspondence with school officials, portfolios and test results, and any other documents showing that your child is receiving an appropriate education in compliance with the law. You should maintain these records for at least two years. You should keep your student’s high school records and proof of compliance with the home education laws during the high school years (including any type of home education notice that you file with state or local officials) on file forever. HSLDA’s high school webpage has additional information about homeschool recordkeeping.



Home School Legal Defense Association is a national advocacy organization that supports the right of parents to educate their children at home. We are dedicated to protecting the legality of your homeschool while equipping you to successfully teach your children.

HSLDA members have 24/7 phone and email access to our staff of attorneys and legal assistants, who can help you understand the homeschool law in your state and will go to bat for you if a school official or other authority challenges your homeschool. Our 80,000 members—families like you!— also receive personalized advice on everything form homeschooling a high schooler to teaching a child with speical needs from our team of education consultants.


Please note: The information on this page has been reviewed by an attorney, but it should not be taken as legal advice specific to your individual situation.


Last updated July 15, 2015