When I enroll with HPA, whom do I have to tell? Do I have to notify the county? Do I notify my local public school?

Frequently Asked Questions

You do not have to notify anyone about your decision to enroll your child in a private school unless your child is already registered in another school or homeschool program. If enrolled in another school, they must formally withdraw from that school. The process will be determined by the school in question, as all schools will vary in their withdrawal requirements; please contact the school and withdraw accordingly.

If registered with your county as a homeschooler, you would need to send them a letter of termination of the homeschool program. All this is explained in detail below:

If your child is enrolled in a public or private school and wants to change to Hillcrest Private Academy, you MUST formally withdraw from the other school within 30 days of registering with HPA. You must contact the school to find out what they require. If you stop showing up at the public school without withdrawing, you start the truancy process, and a truancy officer may show up at your door. We recommend enrolling with HPA before withdrawing from your current program so there is no lapse in coverage.

When the public or private school wants to know where you are transferring your child, the answer is either “I am homeschooling” or “I will be enrolling in a non-public “cover” school as my homeschooling option.” If you would like a copy of your child’s school records, you can request them. You, the parent, have legal rights to view your child’s records. By law, they must give them to you, but school officials do not make many school office personnel aware of this. There is a records request form located on the “documents” page for you to fill out and email to us. We will send it to the student’s previous school if needed. Here is the state statute in case you need it:

1002.22 Education records and reports of K-12 students; rights of parents and students; notification; penalty. —

(a) Students and their parents shall have the right to access their education records, including the right to inspect and review those records.

(4) PENALTY. —if any official or employee of an institution refuses to comply with this section, the aggrieved parent or student has an immediate right to bring an action in circuit court to enforce his or her rights by injunction. Any aggrieved parent or student who brings such action and whose rights are vindicated may be awarded attorney’s fees and court costs.

If you filed a notice of intent to homeschool, thereby establishing your Home Education Program with your local school board, and want to change to the private school option, you MUST send a letter of termination to the county within 30 days of enrollment in a private school. It should be something like this: “This is to notify you that the Home Education Program for (Student Name) has been terminated. (S)He is now enrolled in a private school.” You will send this termination letter to the Superintendent or the person on the school board you sent your letter of intent. You must do this! If you stop turning in your annual report, you start the truancy process, and a truancy officer may appear at your door. Please be aware, as per the FL State Statutes, they may require you to have your student complete an evaluation before they allow the termination. Here is a Notice of Termination you may use if you choose.

Yes, you’re still homeschooling; you’re just doing it using the private school option instead of the HEP option. Using this option, your students are legally considered private school students, not homeschooled students. This does not mean that you will be any less of a homeschooler from a practical standpoint, simply that the law recognizes a difference between private school students and home education students and applies different rules and privileges to each.