October 15, 2001

West Virginia Superintendent Acknowledges Mistake

When Jackson County Schools misinterpreted the law and tried to convince a home schooling family that they were subject to a remedial program, Home School Legal Defense Association immediately wrote the school district, pointing out that they had incorrectly applied the law. As a result, Jackson County recently contacted us and acknowledged their error.

Mr. and Mrs. S. submitted test scores for their son at the end of the 200001 school year. Although scoring well on most areas, he fell below the 40th percentile on one area of the test. However, his overall mean test score was well above this mark.

West Virginia law states that if a student's mean test score is below the 40th percentile, the parent must develop an improvement plan for the student, and the home schooling program is subject to remediation with oversight by the public school.

Based on a misreading of this law, Jackson County Schools wrote to the S. family, telling them that they had to put their son on an improvement plan. When Mr. and Mrs. S. called HSLDA, we immediately wrote the district to inform them that their interpretation of the law was erroneous.

HSLDA recently received a letter back from the superintendent of Jackson County Schools, thanking us for our letter and agreeing that the S. family's son was not required to be on an improvement plan. In addition, he sent a new letter to the family overruling his original letter requesting a remedial program.