Q. This is my first year homeschooling in Virginia. Up until this fall, my child has been in public school. Can I get a copy of his school records? I am not sure what my legal rights are.

A. Yes, you have a legal right to a copy of your child’s public school records. You may go to his previous school’s office and request a copy. According to the Freedom of Information Act, referenced in § 2.2-3705.4 (1), a parent or legal guardian has a right to have a copy of this information. It’s possible the secretary may not know the law.

If the secretary does not respond positively, you may need to respectfully help him understand his responsibility by providing a copy of the law. You may be required to show identification and sign a release form in order to obtain a copy of the records.

You child’s permanent record may have helpful information about his progress, learning issues, and educational development. This may help you plan a program of study that will better fit his individual needs.