Homeschool Family’s Appeal Hits State Supreme Court

A family’s fight for their homeschooling rights has reached Virginia’s Supreme Court.

In 2017, Kirk and Kristen Sosebee submitted their intent to homeschool to their local school board without proof of residency or a copy of their children’s birth certificates, requirements that the local district requested in addition to the documents listed in the state of Virginia’s official homeschooling laws.

School administrators view the additional paperwork as their due diligence rather than opposition to homeschooling.

“They set a policy to protect children,” Superintendent Mark Church told The Roanoke Times in December 2018 when the family’s appeal was denied by a Circuit Court judge.

However, HSLDA believes that the requirements set a dangerous precedent of school districts creating their own homeschool conditions.

“The law that lets local school officials change up the lunch menu does not also empower them to tamper with truancy regulations in a way that puts homeschool families at risk of criminal prosecution,” wrote Jim Mason, Vice President of Litigation and Development at HSLDA.

If the justices agree to hear the case, it’s a decision that could have a wide-range of implications to homeschool families across the country.

“Should this ruling stand, every other school district in the state could impose additional requirements on parents who wish to homeschool,” Mason wrote, “and if school boards in Virginia are granted unfettered power to change their state’s homeschooling requirements, how many school boards in other states will try to claim that same power?”

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