A dispute over grade school records is threatening to sink a homeschool graduate’s dream of serving in the military.

After completing all 13 years of his home education program and graduating from high school in May of 2020, a young man recently decided to fulfill a longtime goal and enlist in the Navy.

His parents provided his homeschool diploma and transcripts to the recruiter in Maricopa County, Arizona. They also documented that they had submitted homeschool affidavits for their son as far back as the 5th grade.

Since all branches of the military recognize homeschool diplomas and academic records as proof that students have completed high school in compliance with the state law, the graduate thought he was all set. He was shocked to learn from the Department of Navy that they were rejecting his enlistment.

The family contacted HSLDA for help.

But What About Kindergarten?

After looking into their case, I discovered that Navy recruiters were rejecting the graduate because his parents failed to document that he had indeed been homeschooled from kindergarten through 4th grade.

I wrote a letter on behalf of this young man demonstrating that the family had evidence of compliance with Arizona law for over eight years, and that they had provided detailed information about his high school education. I insisted this clearly demonstrated that the recruit can and should be treated as a high school graduate.

His mother reported that this setback has been a severe disappointment to her son. He comes from a long line of soldiers and sailors, and ever since he was a young boy he has talked about serving his country in the military.

We are hopeful that the Navy will see the light and allow this young man to enlist.

If you have questions about the record-keeping requirements for your state, we invite you to check out your state law here and our record-keeping series here.