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West Virginia

May 22, 2006

Fayette Threatens to Shut Down Homeschools

The Attendance Director of Fayette County public schools sent a letter in December threatening to shut down any homeschool that did not turn in year-end assessments by the June 30 due date. She said the requirement “must be strictly adhered to.”

She followed up with: “If the assessment results are not turned in on or before June thirtieth of the year in which the student was instructed at home, the parent/guardian shall be denied the right to home school his or her child the following year.”

It is regrettable that she chose to make this belligerent threat. Mutual respect and good will are much more effective in the long run than threats.

Despite the fact that only a judge—not an attendance director—has power to deny homeschooling, and despite the unnecessarily hostile tone of the letter, we urge families to be conscientious about complying with the June 30 due date. An assessment submitted after that date places the family's homeschool program in jeopardy of being out of compliance with the compulsory attendance law, with potentially significant consequences.

If any member family misses the due date, HSLDA will provide legal representation if necessary.