Tennessee Homeschool Regulations and Requirements
Tennessee compulsory school attendance age
Starting at age 6 and until your child turns 18, your child is required to attend school or comply with the homeschool laws. Exceptions:
- If you believe your child is not ready to attend school at age 6, you may apply to the principal of your local public school for a one-semester or one-year deferral of required attendance.
- If your child is under 6, but has been enrolled in a public school for six weeks or more, he or she must continue to attend school or comply with the homeschool laws.
- If your child is homeschooled under the homeschool statute, in association with a church-related school, or via parent participation as a parent-teacher in a church-related school, your child is not required to attend school after turning 17.
- Early graduation is permitted. If your child has (1) received a high school diploma or a GED, or (2) is enrolled and making “satisfactory progress” in an approved GED program, he or she is not required to continue attending school.
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 Tennessee 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.
A-TeC Families are Eligible for a “Group -HSLDA Membership- Discount”. Please Use Code: 210585
The importance of recordkeeping
You can find Tennessee’s specific recordkeeping requirements, they are listed above. In addition to those requirements, 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.
These records should include attendance records, information on the textbooks and workbooks your student used, samples of your student’s schoolwork, correspondence with school officials, portfolios and test results, and any other documents showing that your child is receiving an appropriate education in compliance with the law. You should maintain these records for at least two years. You should keep your student’s high school records and proof of compliance with the home education laws during the high school years (including any type of home education notice that you file with state or local officials) on file forever. HSLDA’s high school webpage has additional information about homeschool recordkeeping.