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Homeschooling? Here’s What the Law Really Says

by Mike Smith • February 21, 2020

en español >>

With some public schools only now reopening in Puerto Rico after recent earthquakes, many parents are considering homeschooling—but they’re confused by conflicting information about the law.

Allow us to set the record straight.

You do not need permission from public school officials or any other authority in order to homeschool in Puerto Rico.

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.

We have developed a sample letter that you can adapt to inform your local school that you are withdrawing your child. The information on this letter is all you are required by law to provide.

What You Don’t Have to Do

Meanwhile, feel free to disregard some of the bad information that has been spread to families who wish to homeschool.

For example, officials at the Pachin Marin Intermediate School in San Juan sent a letter to parents saying they must obtain permission before beginning to homeschool. This is incorrect.

Many other requirements listed in the letter are simply untrue. Here’s a quick summary of the facts:

  • Neither parents nor their students need to meet with social workers, counselors, or the school director before homeschooling.
  • Parents of students with special needs do not need to meet with special-education teachers or notify the Department of the Family before homeschooling.
  • Parents who wish to homeschool do not need to present a list of books and subjects for approval—from anyone.
  • Homeschool students are not required to take an assessment test from the Department of Education or anyone else.

Private Education

Homeschools in Puerto Rico operate as “nongovernmental schools,” which have no regulations. In this manner, homeschools are like private schools—they are not overseen by the Department of Education or the Department of the Family because private schools issue transcripts to measure educational achievement rather than award diplomas.

And should you have a problem withdrawing your child to homeschool, contact our office at info@hslda.org.

Mike Smith


Mike Smith is an attorney, speaker, and homeschool movement leader with over 30 years of passionate advocacy for homeschooling families. Read more.

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