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K-12 student and Parent rights

1002.20 K-12 student and parent rights.—Parents of public school students must receive accurate and timely information regarding their child’s academic progress and must be informed of ways they can help their child to succeed in school. K-12 students and their parents are afforded numerous statutory rights including, but not limited to, the following:


(1) SYSTEM OF EDUCATION.—In accordance with s. 1, Art. IX of the State Constitution, all K-12 public school students are entitled to a uniform, safe, secure, efficient, and high quality system of education, one that allows students the opportunity to obtain a high quality education. Parents are responsible to ready their children for school; however, the State of Florida cannot be the guarantor of each individual student’s success.

(2) ATTENDANCE.—(a) Compulsory school attendance.—The compulsory school attendance laws apply to all children between the ages of 6 and 16 years, as provided in s. 1003.21(1) and (2)(a), and, in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.21(1) and (2)(a):1. A student who attains the age of 16 years during the school year has the right to file a formal declaration of intent to terminate school enrollment if the declaration is signed by the parent. The parent has the right to be notified by the school district of the district’s receipt of the student’s declaration of intent to terminate school enrollment. 2. Students who become or have become married or who are pregnant and parenting have the right to attend school and receive the same or equivalent educational instruction as other students. (b) Regular school attendance.—Parents of students who have attained the age of 6 years by February 1 of any school year but who have not attained the age of 16 years must comply with the compulsory school attendance laws. Parents have the option to comply with the school attendance laws by attendance of the student in a public school; a parochial, religious, or denominational school; a private school; a home education program; or a private tutoring program, in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.01(13). (c) Absence for religious purposes.—A parent of a public school student may request and be granted permission for absence of the student from school for religious instruction or religious holidays, in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.21(2)(b)1. (d) Absence for treatment of autism spectrum disorder.—A parent of a public school student may request and be granted permission for absence of the student from school for an appointment scheduled to receive a therapy service provided by a licensed health care practitioner or behavior analyst certified pursuant to s. 393.17 for the treatment of autism spectrum disorder pursuant to ss. 1003.21(2)(b)2. and 1003.24(4). (e) Dropout prevention and academic intervention programs.—The parent of a public school student has the right to receive written notice by certified mail prior to placement of the student in a dropout prevention and academic intervention program and shall be notified in writing and entitled to an administrative review of any action by school personnel relating to the student’s placement, in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.53(5).

(3) HEALTH ISSUES.—(a) School-entry health examinations.—The parent of any child attending a public or private school shall be exempt from the requirement of a health examination upon written request stating objections on religious grounds in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.22(1) and (2). (b) Immunizations.—The parent of any child attending a public or private school shall be exempt from the school immunization requirements upon meeting any of the exemptions in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.22(5). (c) Biological experiments.—Parents may request that their child be excused from performing surgery or dissection in biological science classes in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.47. (d) Reproductive health and disease education.—A public school student whose parent makes written request to the school principal shall be exempted from the teaching of reproductive health or any disease, including HIV/AIDS, in accordance with the provisions of s. 1003.42(3). (e) Contraceptive services to public school students.—In accordance with the provisions of s. 1006.062(7), students may not be referred to or offered contraceptive services at school facilities without the parent’s consent. (f) Career education courses involving hazardous substances.—High school students must be given plano safety glasses or devices in career education courses involving the use of hazardous substances likely to cause eye injury. (g) Substance abuse reports.—The parent of a public school student must be timely notified of any verified report of a substance abuse violation by the student, in accordance with the provisions of s. 1006.09(8).

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