West Virginia Homeschool Laws & Requirements
Compulsory school age in West Virginia is between the ages of six and sixteen, and home education is one legal option for fulfilling that obligation. Homeschooling in West Virginia begins by filing a one-time letter of intent to homeschool with the superintendent of your county’s Board of Education.
You are likely wondering what other West Virginia education laws apply to homeschoolers. Let’s take a look at the various West Virginia homeschool requirements, how families go about switching from public school to homeschool, what kind of records you may want to keep, and even how to complete your homeschooling experience–either through graduation or by returning to the public school system.
- West Virginia Homeschool Letter of Intent
- Homeschool Recordkeeping in West Virginia
- Homeschool Graduation Requirements in West Virginia
- Returning to Public School after Homeschooling
- Additional Resources Related to Homeschooling in West Virginia
*This information should by no means be interpreted as legal advice. It is your responsibility to interpret and understand the laws that you will be homeschooling under.
Option 1: Getting Approval From a School Board for Homeschooling
While this option is the least popular in West Virginia, those families that choose to homeschool by seeking approval from their local school board will be required to:
- Have their curriculum and instruction approved by the local school board
- Provide instruction at least 180 days per year
- Instruct in a location approved by the school board
- Provide attendance, instruction and progress information when requested
- Use a method of assessment determined by school board
Please note that a school board can deny the request for “good and reasonable justification”.
Option 2: West Virginia Homeschool Letter of Intent
The first action for families who choose home education in West Virginia under this option is to submit a letter of intent to either their county’s Board of Education or Superintendent of Education. For each child being homeschooled, families should include:
- Educational credentials for the homeschool parent that are equivalent to a high school diploma or higher
- Name, address, and age of child
- An attached outline of their instruction plan
- Assurance that the child will receive instruction in reading, language, mathematics, science and social studies
- Assurance that the child will participate in an annual educational assessment of either a nationally normed standardized achievement test, a standardized test offered within the local school system, or an evaluation by a certified teacher of your child’s portfolio with samples their school work
If your child is currently enrolled in a school, it is a good idea to formally withdraw him or her from that school once you begin homeschooling to prevent any truancy complications.
More information relating to the home education rules for West Virginia can be found at A2ZHomeschooling.com.
Details of West Virginia’s Homeschool Laws
Homeschool Recordkeeping in West Virginia
West Virginia homeschool laws stipulate that parents or guardians of homeschooled children must maintain copies of of each student’s academic assessment for three years. In grades 3, 5, 8, and 11, parents must submit the results of the academic assessment to their county superintendent no later than June 30 of the year the assessment was completed.
One of the most effective ways to keep track of all that your homeschooler is accomplishing within a given school year is with a homeschool portfolio. The portfolio should accurately reflect not only what instruction you’ve covered, but how your student is retaining what they are learning. Items to add to your portfolio could include:
- The results of any standardized tests your student has taken
- An outline of what curriculum subjects and topics you have covered (Time4Learning makes this easy with customized, printable reports)
- For high schoolers, a homeschool transcript
- Samples of your student’s work
Homeschool Graduation Requirements in West VirginiaPublic school students in West Virginia are required to complete a Five Year Academic/Career Plan, referred to as a Personalized Education Plan (PEP) as per WVDOE Policy 2510.
|West Virginia diploma requirements||24 credits are required for graduation including 18 prescribed credits and 6 personalized credits.||Per West Virginia state education code (§18-8-12), parents determine when their student has fulfilled graduation requirements and can issue their own homeschool diploma; students of private/online schools may receive diplomas from those institutions.|
|West Virginia high school testing requirements||Public school students are not subject to testing requirements for graduation.||Homeschool students are not subject to testing requirements for graduation.|
|West Virginia high school transcripts||Transcripts are created for public school students by the high school in which they graduate from.||Homeschool parents may create their own student transcripts, and may include any information they deem pertinent to colleges, military, and/or future workplace organizations.|
|West Virginia high school course credits||As of the class of 2020, prescribed credit requirements in WV include 4 credits of English Language Arts, 4 credits of Mathematics, 3 credits of Science, 4 credits of Social Studies, 1 credit of Physical Education, 1 credit of Health Education, and 1 credit of Fine Arts. In addition, students must complete 6 elective credits.||Parents determine when their student has fulfilled graduation requirements; for the purpose of creating transcripts, some homeschool parents do assign credits to individual courses.|
|GED eligibility||West Virginia currently uses the TASC Test Assessing Secondary Completion™ to demonstrate that students have achieved skills equivalent to those at the high school completion level.||Homeschoolers are eligible to take the high school equivalency test once they are 17 years of age. As of 2018, WV law does not require homeschoolers to obtain a GED to be eligible for the state Promise Scholarship.|
Enrolling in Public School after Homeschooling
If your family decides for any reason not to continue your adventure of homeschooling, you must notify your county Superintendent of Schools that you are terminating home instruction for any child who is within compulsory ages for education.
Most every family considers the decision to homeschool a year-to-year one. Some families will homeschool from kindergarten through graduation, but many other families will use homeschooling as an alternative for specific grades or in specific circumstances. If, after a period of teaching your child at home, you realize that it is not the right choice for your family anymore, you’ll need to know how to transfer from homeschool to public school.
The process for transfer in West Virginia is according to the determination of each individual school district. Your child may be tested by their school district for the purpose of placing the child in the grade level deemed most appropriate. Acceptance of high school credits while homeschooling will also be completely at the discretion of individual schools and districts.
Additional Resources Related to Homeschooling in West Virginia
Have other questions about homeschooling in West Virginia? You may find the following pages helpful.