State Law: Kentucky

Kentucky compulsory school attendance age

Children who will turn 6 by August 1 of the school year and who have not turned 18 or graduated from high school must attend school or be in compliance with Kentucky’s homeschool law.

HSLDA believes that a parent-issued diploma and transcript should be sufficient to demonstrate that a child has completed a secondary education. However, even if your child is beyond compulsory school attendance age, there may be situations where you would want to continue to follow the requirements of a home education option recognized under Kentucky law until your child graduates from high school (filing a home education notice, keeping attendance and other records, etc.). These records may be requested in some situations, such as obtaining a driver’s license if your child is a minor, enlisting in the military, applying to colleges, or demonstrating eligibility for Social Security benefits. If you are a member of HSLDA and would like additional details, please contact us.

Withdrawing your child from his or her current school

If you want to start homeschooling during the school year and your child is currently enrolled in a public or private school, HSLDA recommends that you formally withdraw your child from that school. If you are going to start homeschooling after the school year is over, and your child is considered enrolled for the following year, we recommend that you withdraw your child before the next school year begins, so that the school does not mark your child as absent or truant.

We invite you to become a member of HSLDA to receive specific advice about withdrawing your child from school and starting to homeschool. Local schools may have specific forms or withdrawal procedures. HSLDA members are eligible to receive individualized advice about whether complying with those procedures is advisable or required. HSLDA members can also use the sample letter of withdrawal for Kentucky available in Member Resources to correspond with school officials.

We generally recommend that any correspondence with authorities be sent by “Certified Mail—Return Receipt Requested.” Keep copies of the withdrawal letter and any other paperwork or correspondence, and any green postal receipts, for your personal records.

Note: If your child has never attended a public or private school, this section does not apply.

Complying with Kentucky’s homeschool law

In Kentucky, there is no homeschool statute. Homeschools operate under the private school statute by complying with the following steps.

Homeschooling under the private school statute:

1. Notify the board of education. 

You must annually send a private school notice of attendance to your local board of education within the first two weeks of the start of the school year. Traditionally, this has been interpreted to be within two weeks from the first day of school in the local school district. Typically the notice should be submitted no later than the second week of August. The notice should list the students you have in attendance at your school and include their names, ages, and addresses. (A notice of attendance form is available to HSLDA members on our website.)

2. Keep attendance and scholarship reports. 

You must keep attendance reports and scholarship reports (i.e. report cards) in a similar manner as your local public schools do. Generally, this means the reports must be updated every six to nine weeks, depending on the schedule your district has chosen.

3. Teach for the required number of days. 

A parent must ensure that at least 1062 hours of instruction is provided to their child. This has to be done over at least one- hundred seventy (170) days. While some parents prefer to keep a daily record of the hours of instruction they provide, if the amount of time you spend is fairly consistent you can continue to primarily count days. You will just need to ensure that you provide at least 1062 hours in at least 170 days.

4. Teach the required subjects in English. 

You are required to include reading, writing, spelling, grammar, history, mathematics, science, and civics in your homeschool curriculum, and to teach in the English language.

The importance of recordkeeping

You can find Kentucky’s specific recordkeeping requirements, if any, above. Regardless of what state you live in, HSLDA recommends that you keep detailed records of your homeschool program. These records may be helpful if you face an investigation regarding your homeschooling or your student needs to furnish proof of education.