Homeschooling Related Statutes
The ultimate authority on Virginia home education law is the Code of Virginia, 1950, as amended. Navigate the following sections for the links to take you directly to the Code of Virginia, maintained by the Virginia General Assembly Legislative Information System in Richmond.
Compulsory Attendance Code and Home Instruction Statute
The most significant laws related to home education in Virginia are the Compulsory Attendance Code (§22.1-254) and the Home Instruction Statute (§22.1-254.1). §22.1-254 and §22.1-254.1 define the legal options for homeschooling in Virginia, including home instruction, the approved tutor option, and the religious exemption, and discuss the annual reporting and testing/evaluation options for home instruction filers. These laws also regulate the ages and conditions for compulsory attendance in Virginia, discuss probationary periods and grievance hearings, and address PSAT/AP testing for homeschooled students.
Penalties for Violating Compulsory Attendance Code
§22.1-263 discusses penalties for violating the Compulsory Attendance Code (§22.1-254).
Virginia law §15.2-926 allows local jurisdictions to establish curfews for minors between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. Local jurisdictions do not have the authority to establish daytime curfews.
Immunizations and Vaccinations
§32.1-46 discusses which immunizations are required for school-aged children under Virginia law, and §22.1-271.4 requires homeschooled children to comply with the immunization requirements of §32.1-46. For more information, see: Vaccination Laws Pertaining to Homeschoolers
Teens who wish to obtain a driver’s license in Virginia must complete a classroom course and a “behind the wheel” course in driver education. Parents of homeschooled teens may teach either or both courses. These laws address driver education and licensing procedures for homeschooled students.
To read the complete text of the law: §22.1-205. Driver education programs.
To read the complete text of the law: §46.2-334. Conditions and requirements for licensure of persons under 18; requests for cancellation of minor’s driver’s license; temporary driver’s licenses; Board of Education approved programs; home-schooled students; fee.
For more information on driver education and homeschooled students, see Driver Education.
In Virginia, local school districts decide whether to offer part-time enrollment to homeschooled students. The law allows public schools to count part-time students in the ADM (Average Daily Membership) for funding purposes. To find out whether your school district allows part-time enrollment, consult the policy manual for your local school division. You can read more about finding your school division’s local policy manual here: Finding Local School District Policies. To find out more about part-time enrollment and related issues, read FAQs about Homeschooler Access to the Public Schools.
To read the complete text of the law: §22.1-253.13:2. Standard 2. Instructional, administrative, and support personnel (scroll to subsection N).
Transfer Credit for Homeschooled Students Entering High School
§22.1-253.13:4 (Subsection A) requires local school boards to make provisions for transfer credit for homeschooled students entering public school for high school. Local policy varies significantly across the state. For more information, read: Returning to School after Homeschooling? and High School Transfer Credit Procedures.
§22.1-254.2 discusses the conditions under which homeschooled students may take the General Educational Development (GED) exam and receive a high school equivalency certificate. For more information on the GED and homeschooled students, see: Homeschoolers and the General Educational Development Exam (GED).
Stanford 9 Testing
§22.1-253.13:3 (Subsection F) states that school districts are no longer required to administer the Stanford 9 Achievement Test, but may opt to provide it to home instructed students for testing/evaluation purposes. Many Virginia school districts are no longer administering the Stanford Achievement Test to homeschooled students.
School Board Related Policies
Locally elected school boards determine school division policy, but must adhere to Virginia laws. For help finding local school division policies, please see: School Division Policies
Although school boards set school division policy, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) offers advice in interpreting how Virginia laws should be implemented. Please refer to the following page for VDOE guidelines about homeschooling, as well as collected statistics: VDOE Guidelines and Statistics
Families who homeschool based on the Religious Exemption (RE) may be interested to read these Attorney General opinions indicating that school boards are entitled to review RE claims periodically: Virginia Attorney General Opinions
This information is provided as a courtesy of The Organization of Virginia Homeschoolers. It is not intended as legal advice. For legal advice, contact a licensed attorney.
VaHomeschoolers is a non-profit public charity with 501(c)(3) status; your donation is tax-deductible to the extent provided by law.