Q. What do I do if I want to take my child out of school to homeschool now?
A. First, fill out a Notice of Intent to Provide Home Instruction form (NOI) or write a personal letter to the superintendent. You can find helpful instructions here.
Second, submit your NOI form or letter to the superintendent’s office and request a receipt. There are two ways to submit your NOI: 1) Mail your NOI from the post office by certified, return-receipt, or (2) personally delivered your NOI to the superintendent’s office and request a hand-written receipt from the person who receives the document. Your receipt is proof of the date you complied with the homeschool law (§22.1-254.1) by notifying, and it also shows that you have fulfilled the homeschool option of the compulsory attendance law (§22.1-254).
Next, you can withdraw your child from school. Once you have your receipt showing the date you notified the superintendent, you have proof that you have complied with the compulsory attendance laws so you should not be charged with truancy. You do not have to wait for a response from the superintendent in order to withdraw your child from school because Virginia is not a “permission” state. The law does not require you to ask the superintendent for permission to homeschool; it requires you to notify the superintendent of your intention to homeschool. §22.1-254.1 (B) states if a parent wants to provide home instruction, he shall annually notify the superintendent… “of his intention to so instruct the child…”
Regrettably, some public school personnel are not familiar with homeschool laws; therefore, they may give information that is inconsistent with the statute. If you have followed these steps, respectfully inform them that you have complied with the requirements of the homeschool statute and compulsory attendance laws.