In Florida, switching from public education to home education (homeschooling) can happen at any time of year. Parents don't have to wait for a specific time of year to withdraw their students, and they can choose to begin homeschooling whenever is convenient or necessary for them to do so.
We often hear from parents concerned about doing this incorrectly. They may worry about students needing to complete certain classes or receive credits before withdrawing them from school. Some ask if it is important to complete an entire semester or the whole year first, before leaving the school.
In Florida, however, waiting for specific things to occur is not necessary. Home education legally begins with the filing of a Notice of Intent, even in the middle of an academic year. Parents are not required to wait until courses, credits or a semester/year has ended before withdrawing a student and filing the notice of intent.
Rest assured that students who begin homeschooling in the middle of an academic year have the same potential for success as any other homeschooled student. Even those who've completed a portion of the year in a public school and the remainder in a homeschool program have no difficulty meeting the requirements of the annual homeschool evaluation. Since the evaluation for homeschoolers is based on progress (not grade level) and is not due for another 12 months, new families have plenty of time to assemble a successful portfolio -- even when the student's grade level overlapped between years.
To learn more about Florida homeschooling, we recommend How to Homeschool in Florida and browsing our website. To meet parents who are already homeschooling and to ask questions in a supportive community, join the Florida Homeschool Association or its online forum.