Legal/Homeschool Laws
Laws that regulate home education vary from state to state. It is important to understand the legal requirements in your state and to be aware of legislative and other legal issues that affect homeschoolers in your community. We've compiled resources that will help you become informed. Although homeschooling is legal in all 50 states, and the vast majority of homeschoolers face no problems, you may find that you need legal assistance at some point in your homeschooling career. We've compiled a list of resources to help you find the support you need. And if you'd like to become more involved in working towards homeschooling freedoms, we discuss some of the issues facing homeschoolers that we hope you find compelling.
State Laws
Read the laws regulating home education in Virginia and browse through the case law and legal opinions relating to those laws, along with government publications relating to homeschooling and summaries of the laws.
Forms
Which forms do you need to fill out? Where can you get them? Here is a list of useful forms for homeschooling in Virginia.
Legal Support
If you need legal information or have run into a legal situation regarding your decision to homeschool, these resources will be helpful.
Lobbying Groups
A listing of local and national lobbying groups and information on how you can become involved in the political process to ensure the freedom to homeschool is protected.
Attorneys
When searching for an attorney, it is helpful to know whether he or she has experience working with homeschoolers and is interested in protecting the right to homeschool.
Legal Issues
Is homeschooling legal? Which laws pertain to homeschoolers and which don't? How do homeschoolers protect their rights to freely educate their children and to preserve their privacy?
Government Resources
A listing of local and state government resources, including your state's Department of Education, school districts, and Senate and House of Representative information.
What's Popular
Virginia Home School Laws from HSLDA
The Home School Legal Defense Association provides a brief summary of the homeschooling laws in Virginia. Includes a link to a legal analysis of laws relating to homeschooling in Virginia.
Attorney General Balilies May 1984 Opinion
Families who homeschool based on the Religious Exemption may be interested to read a few Attorney General opinions that a school board has the right to review a family’s claim for Religious Exemption every few years or even annually. Religious beliefs, however sincere at a point in time, may change. Thus the school board’s recognition of an exemption could theoretically change as well. If so asked, the family could simply write to the school board, informing them that their status was unchange...
22.1-255. Nonresident children.
Any person who has residing with him for a period of sixty days or more any child within the ages prescribed in § 22.1-254 whose parents or guardians reside in another state or the District of Columbia shall be subject to the provisions of § 22.1-254 and shall pay or cause to be paid any tuition charges for such child that may be required pursuant to § 22.1-5 or shall return such child to the home of his parents or legal guardians.
Handling It Ourselves
With a little support and encouragement from each other, homeschoolers can effectively respond to superintendents’ offices that overstep their bounds.
The Religious Exemption: Past, Present, and Future
Virginia offers a unique option to families who have religious objections to complying with the compulsory attendance statutes: the religious exemption. Explore the history of this exemption and consider the possibility of it being under threat today.
Johnson vs. Prince William County School Board
This court decision involved a dispute between Prince William County School Board and a family who homeschooled via the Religious Exemption.
VaHomeschoolers
VaHomeschoolers is the Old Dominion's only fully inclusive, member directed, and volunteer driven state association. VaHomeschoolers is neutral in matters of religion and partisan politics.
Option 1 Notice of Intent (NOI) - Sample from Arlington County School District
Sample of an option (i) NOI that has been accepted by Prince Arlington County Public Schools.
22.1-254.1. Declaration of policy; requirements for home instruction of children.
A. When the requirements of this section have been satisfied, instruction of children by their parents is an acceptable alternative form of education under the policy of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Any parent of any child who will have reached the fifth birthday on or before September 30 of any school year and who has not passed the eighteenth birthday may elect to provide home instruction in lieu of school attendance if he (i) holds a baccalaureate degree in any subject from an accredited ins...
Option 1 Notice of Intent (NOI) - Sample from Prince William County School District
Sample of an option (i) NOI that has been accepted by Prince William County Schools.
Homeschooling and Child Abuse: No Connection
Recent news stories have highlighted several isolated cases of child abuse and presented them as indicative of problems in the homeschooling community, because they happened within families who claimed to be educating their children at home. Some of these reports have suggested that federal or state regulations requiring background checks and monitoring of homeschooling families would minimize such cases of child abuse. However, there is no need for intrusive regulation of the homeschooling comm...
Option 1 Notice of Intent (NOI) - Sample from Albemarle County School District
Sample of an option (i) NOI that has been accepted by Albemarle County Public Schools.
Virginia Department of Education
This is the official website for the Virginia Department of Education.
Answering the CPS (Child Protective Services) Questions
Transcript of a talk given by Edwin Schuster of the Virginia Child Protective Services about the relationship between homeschoolers and CPS. The text is presented in question and answer format. Includes the rights that families have when contacted by CPS.
Sample Notice of Intent to Provide Home Instruction
Generic NOI you can customize for submission.
Featured Resources

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Cognitive Styles and Learning Strategies: Understanding Style Differences in Learning and Behaviour
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The First Year of Homeschooling Your Child: Your Complete Guide to Getting Off to the Right Start
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