November 27, 2013

College Financial Aid Problem Resolved

Scott Woodruff answers questions and assists members regarding legal issues in Maine. He and his wife homeschooled their children. Read more >>

A Maine homeschool graduate starting her fourth year at Hampshire College in Massachusetts was told that her financial aid would be discontinued. The assistant director of financial aid said she must submit either a “state-issued certificate of completion” or a “letter from your public school system certifying that the homeschool program qualified as an exemption” from compulsory attendance law.

He said the letter should be written by “the staff member responsible for tracking homeschool students” in the local public school. He claimed this requirement was due to a “new federal regulation.” The Home School Legal Defense Association member family did not know how to comply with the assistant director’s demand.


HSLDA was heavily involved in the 2012 changes to the laws that affect the ability of homeschoolers to obtain federal college financial aid. The changes actually made it easier for homeschoolers to get federal aid—not harder. The assistant director was misinterpreting the changes.

HSLDA Senior Counsel Scott A. Woodruff challenged the assistant director to explain his rationale based on the actual wording of the federal regulations. He replied to Woodruff and said the student’s financial aid had already been reinstated.

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