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Before you can begin to homeschool, parents must file a Notice of Intent to Homeschool form with their county school board liaison. This form, required under Maryland regulations, must be filed 15 days before a parent can begin to homeschool their child.
Some important points to keep in mind about the Notification Form.
- You must file the form by mid-August, if you intend on homeschooling Kindergarten AND your child turns 5 years old by September 1 of that year. NOTE: Parents who plan to homeschool their children but wish to wait until their child turns 6 must file a maturity waiver with their school district.
- If you choose to begin homeschooling in high school, be familiar with how the compulsory school age will be changing between now and 2015.
- You are not a legally recognized homeschooler in Maryland if you have not signed and submitted this form. If your local county does not have a signed form on file for you, then your child is considered truant from school.
- You must elect on this form to have your annual reviews conducted by either the county homeschool liaison or a specific umbrella group.
- Your umbrella group administrator MAY NOT sign this form on your behalf.
- If you elect to have your reviews conducted through the county, you are legally obligated to submit an annual written verification that you are continuing to homeschool. If you review under an umbrella group, that group's administrator must file paperwork that you are under their supervision.
- You are not obligated to submit information on the Notification Form relating to any previous school your child may have attended or if they have ever had an IEP or 504 plan.
- This form is NOT requesting "permission" to homeschool. A county school board cannot deny a parent the right to homeschool their children. This form is a required notification of your choice to invoke your right to provide instruction at home for your children.
- If you chose to begin homeschooling in the middle of the school year, your child is not required to stay in school before your 15-day notification period is up. As a parent, you may unenroll your child from public school at any time and take a vacation from "school". Alternatively, some families have elected to take "sick days" from public school during this two week waiting period.
- You are not required to tell your county liaison about a specific curriculum you will be using with your child when you file your Notification of Intent Form. Maryland regulations do not mandate any specific curriculum to be used by a homeschool parent. County liaisons have no authority to "approve" your curriculum before you begin homeschooling. Curriculum and instruction, however, will be reviewed per COMAR regulations twice a year, after homeschooling has begun.
- Once your child turns 16, you are no longer legally subject to the Compulsory School Attendance laws, nor are you required to continue to submit to county homeschool reviews. Read more about the debate around whether homeschool parents should continue to review until their child has graduated from high school. NOTE: Your obligation to continue county and/or umbrella reviews will change as the new compulsory school age law takes full effect in 2015.
The information on this page is provided for informational purposes only. It is not considered legal advice.
April 30, 2017
E-mail: Hand In Hand Education
Last Updated July 02, 2012