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District of Columbia Homeschool State Laws


The official purpose of Chapter 52, Section 5200.3 of the District of Columbia’s State Education Office Establishment Act of 2000 (SEOEA) is “to establish procedures for home schooling in accordance with the District of Columbia’s school attendance and reporting laws….to ensure that children participating in a home schooling program receive thorough, regular education that will enable them to function as productive members of society in the 21st century.” The same act defines home schooling as “an education program conducted, in compliance with [Chapter 52], by the parent or legal guardian.”

The office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) administers and implements the District of Columbia’s home schooling regulations.

In the District of Columbia, a home schooling program must “Provide instruction that includes, but need not be limited to, language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, art, music, health and physical education.” (SEOEA 2000, Chapter 52, Section 5200.3)   At the same time, Section 5204.2 of the SEOEA clearly states that home schools are not required to “include programs or methods used by the District’s public schools. Nor shall any home schooling program be required to adhere to specific curricular frameworks or any other program of instruction adopted by the District’s public schools.”

Section 5207 of the law also requires that parents or legal guardian(s) who will be providing home school instruction to a child or children in their own family “must have a high school diploma or its equivalent.” However, a parent or legal guardian that does not have a high school diploma or its equivalent does have the option of requesting a waiver of the requirement by filing a petition with the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) that provides clear evidence of their ability to provide “a thorough, regular education.” (Section 5207.2.)

To begin home schooling in the District of Columbia, the parent or guardian running the school must provide written notification of intent to home school on an “official form developed by the OSSE” which:

  • indicates the parent or guardian’s consent to the requirements of Chapter 52 of the District’s home schooling regulations;
  • must be submitted to the OSSE and filed annually no later than August 15th and at least 15 days before the start of home instruction (not including Saturdays, Sunday or District holidays); and
  • identifies each child being home schooled.

Updated March 2018

District of Columbia Homeschool State Laws Links:

District of Columbia Colleges:

NOTE: HomeschoolFacts does not endorse any of the links or organizations listed above. All of the information provided is intended for research purposes only and is not given as legal advice. REMEMBER: The most important thing you can do to prepare for homeschooling your child is to become familiar with your state’s laws about homeschooling.




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