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March 7, 2016

New Jersey Threat to Investigate for Truancy Evaporates

Truancy Threat Evaporates

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A central New Jersey homeschooling family received a letter from their school district demanding to know whether the family was homeschooling their child.  The school district warned the family that they might be investigated for truancy if they ignored the letter.

SCOTT WOODRUFF Contact attorney for New Jersey

Since they were members of HSLDA, the family asked us for help. Senior Counsel Scott Woodruff investigated the situation and learned that the school system had a policy permitting the superintendent to ask a family for a letter of intent to homeschool if “there is credible evidence the parent … is not causing the child to receive equivalent instruction elsewhere than at school.”

Woodruff wrote back to the school representative explaining that his initial request was essentially a call for a letter of intent to homeschool. Woodruff asked whether the representative was in possession of evidence the family was not educating the child legally, which is what school policy requires before school officials can seek a letter of intent to homeschool.

The representative never replied to Woodruff’s letter, and the family has heard nothing further from the school system.