Homeschooling in Washington


Compulsory attendance in WA is from ages 8-18. You are required to comply with the homeschool laws beginning on your child's 8th birthday. WA homeschool law includes: meeting the homeschool parent qualifications, withdrawing your student from their current school, filing a letter of intent, teaching the required number of days or hours, teaching the required subjects, conducting an annual assessment, and maintaining records.

Meet the WA homeschool parent qualifications

In WA there are four ways you can qualify to homeschool your child in Washington:

  • Have earned 45 quarter units (30 semester units) of college-level credit.

  • Have attended a Parent Qualifying Course, courses can be found through the Washington Homeschool Organization (WHO).

  • Work with a certificated teacher who works with the student for a minimum of one hour per week.

  • Be approved by the school district superintendent as suitably qualified.

Withdraw your student from their current school*

If your child has not been enrolled in a public or private school, this does not apply to you.

If you want to start homeschooling your child during the school year, you must formally withdraw your child from the school your child is currently enrolled in. If you are going to homeschool your child after the current school year is complete and your child is considered enrolled for the following year, HSLDA recommends you formally withdraw your child before the new school year begins, so the school does not mark your child as absent or truant.

File a letter of intent

You must submit an annual signed letter of intent to homeschool by September 15, or within the first two weeks of the first day of your local public school. The letter should be submitted to the superintendent of the public school district within which the parent resides or the district that accepts the transfer, and the student shall be deemed a transfer student of the nonresident district. You can print off a sample declaration of intent here.

Teach for the required number of days or hours*

*Note: The homeschool law also states that the legislature recognizes that home-based instruction is less structured and more experiential than the instruction normally provided in a classroom. Therefore, the provisions relating to the nature and quantity of instructional and related educational activities shall be liberally construed.

Washington state requires 180 days per year, or an average of 1,000 hours per year, of instruction.

Teach the required subjects*

*Note: The homeschool law also states that the legislature recognizes that home-based instruction is less structured and more experiential than the instruction normally provided in a classroom. Therefore, the provisions relating to the nature and quantity of instructional and related educational activities shall be liberally construed.

Not all subjects are required to be taught in one year. Studies can overlap and be combined, depending on the age, level and interest of your child(ren). Your homeschool curriculum should include: math, reading, writing, spelling, language, history, social studies, science, health, and occupational education.

Conduct an annual assessment

A standardized test should be given annually to your child by a “qualified” person, or have your child evaluated by a certificated person. The Firmly Planted Homeschool Resource Center in Vancouver, WA provides annual assessments with a state qualified administrator.

Maintain records

You should keep records of your homeschooling including annual assessment scores and/or reports, immunization records, and any other documents you deem important to your child(ren)'s education. These records are for you personally but may be requested in the event of an audit or if your student enrolls in the public school system in the future.


Homeschooling in Oregon


Compulsory attendance in OR is from ages 6-18. You are required to comply with the homeschool laws beginning on your child's 6th birthday. OR homeschool law includes: withdrawing your student from their current school, notifying your local Educational Service District (ESD), testing your child in grades 3, 5 8, and 10, and addressing any disabilities.

Withdraw your student from their current school*

If your child has not been enrolled in a public or private school, this does not apply to you.

If you want to start homeschooling your child during the school year, you must formally withdraw your child from the school your child is currently enrolled in. If you are going to homeschool your child after the current school year is complete and your child is considered enrolled for the following year, HSLDA recommends you formally withdraw your child before the new school year begins, so the school does not mark your child as absent or truant.

Notify your local Education Service District (ESD)

You must send in a notification letter to your local ESD to legally homeschool your student. This letter must be re-submitted if you move into a new ESD district. You should notify your local ESD within 10 days of the beginning of homeschooling, within 10 days of withdrawing the child from public school, or if you have relocated to Oregon from another state, within 10 days of arriving, if it is during the school year.

The following ESDs allow online registration: Clackamas ESD, Intermountain ESD (Baker, Morrow, Umatilla, Union counties), Multnomah ESD, Northwest Regional ESD (Clatsop, Columbia, Tillamook, Washington counties), Willamette ESD (Marion, Polk, Yamhill counties), and Linn-Benton-Lincoln ESD. We recommend you print out a copy of your confirmation letter at your convenience for your child's records. For the districts that require a written notification, you can print off an example letter from Oregon Home Education Network (OHEN) here.

Test your child in grades 3, 5, 8, and 10

A child should be tested with an approved test by the State Board of Education and be administered by a qualified neutral person. Your child is to be tested when he or she turns 9 (3rd grade), 11 (5th grade), 14 (8th grade), and 16 (10th grade) by September 1. If your child has never attended a public or private school, the test should be completed by August 15 upon the completion of 3rd grade. Parents can test their child earlier at their discretion if they believe the student has completed grade 3, 5, 8, or 10.

The administrator must score the test and provide the results to you for your records. The results are not reported to the ESD unless specifically requested. The Firmly Planted Homeschool Resource Center in Vancouver, WA provides annual assessments with a state qualified administrator.

Address any disabilities

If your child has a disability, you must have that child evaluated for satisfactory educational progress according to the method recommended in your child’s individualized education plan (IEP) or privately developed plan. No testing of your student is required unless recommended in the plan. Contact HSLDA for more information


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