In the interest of the education of all children in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and based upon the laws as they relate to compulsory attendance of school age children and their right to an education, whether in a public or private/home school, the following best practice approach is suggested as a way both public and private/home school personnel may approach the question of insuring that all children are enrolled in a bonafide school.
A. Parents/Guardians of school age children, by law, must notify the public school district of the enrollment of their child(ren) in a private or parochial school within the first two weeks of each public school year. Home school representatives of Christian Home Educators of Kentucky and the Kentucky Home Education Association and the officers of the Kentucky Directors of Pupil Personnel Association agree that in the absence of any mitigating factors the school(s) which have properly notified public school districts should be presumed to be in compliance with the law and operating a bonafide school; thus, necessitating no further investigation.
B. It is the responsibility of the local director of pupil personnel or his/her designee to investigate any evidence which would suggest that a child(ren) is not enrolled in a bonafide school. The investigation is for the sole purpose of determining that a bonafide school does exist and in no way is intended to investigate and approve the education provided by the school. Any investigation could include, but is not limited to, phone calls, home visits (the privacy of the home must be recognized and no visit inside the home may be conducted without the consent of an adult resident or a duly issued warrant), review of academic and attendance documents, etc.
C. Circumstances/evidence which would cause a public school district to have concern about whether or not a bonafide school did exist, thus causing an investigation to occur, would include, but is not limited to:
1. Notification, after the public school year has begun and at any time other than a semester break, by parent/guardian of intent to withdraw their child(ren)from the public school for the purpose of home schooling; (This would not apply to students moving in from out-of-district.)
2. Notification by the parent/guardian of intent to home school their child(ren) when disciplinary action (i.e. truancy, expulsion, notification relative to driver’s license, etc.) was being contemplated or had begun;
3. Request from an agency or individual to determine if the child(ren) are in school. Requests from an agency concerned with child welfare (i.e. juvenile court, Department of Social Service, etc.) should be investigated as a matter of course. Requests made by a private citizen should proceed only as it relates to probable cause and/or legal requirements;
4. Notification (as required by law) by the parent/guardian of their intent to home school their child(ren) was not received by the public school district within two weeks of the start of the public school year;
5. Evidence of a compelling nature which would suggest the inability of the parent or proposed teacher to operate/maintain a bonafide school.
Should there be any disagreement on the part of the directors of pupil personnel and parents/guardians, it is anticipated that common sense rules will be used to ascertain the information requested by either party. Everyone should have a clear understanding of what are the rights and obligations of the directors of pupil personnel and parents/guardians to insure that all school age children are enrolled in a bonafide school.