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Number of Maryland Homeschool Children

During the first quarter of the 2020-21 academic year, Maryland saw an unprecedented increase in the number of families who filed the Notice of Intent form to homeschool.  Between June and November 2020, more than 13,000 children transitioned from pandemic school-at-home to officially homeschool.

While the total number of Maryland homeschool children now exceeds 40,000, increase in numbers were not uniform across the state. Baltimore City saw the smallest change, with less than a 15% increase in numbers. Garrett and Harford counties, on the other hand, experienced triple digit jumps in the total number of homeschoolers. Somerset County was the only school district to actually experience a small loss in homeschoolers.

Where the Data Comes From

Each year, Maryland’s 23 counties and Baltimore City report the total number of homeschoolers registered in their jurisdiction to the Maryland State Department of Education. The reported numbers are gleaned from the Notice of Intent paperwork submitted by new families beginning to homeschool, as well as families who affirm their intent to continue educating their children at home. Reported data includes children who review with their county homeschool liaison, as well as families who use umbrella groups.

Counties report their annual homeschool statistics in June. Due to the anecdotal reporting of large numbers of families unenrolling from public school due to the pandemic, MSDE conducted a special census count of homeschoolers in October 2020.

Over the last 19 years, prior to the pandemic, the number of homeschooled children in Maryland has fluctuated nominally year to year. Generally, Maryland homeschool children account for no more than 3.0% of the K-12 public school student population in any academic year. According to MSDE’s November 2020 report, homeschool children now account for 4.6% of the public school K-12 population.

The following chart incorporates MSDE homeschool statistics dating back to 2003.

maryland homeschool statistics

Last modified on March 23, 2021

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