Compulsory school age refers to the period of a child’s life from the time the child enters school as a beginner, which may be no later than eight years of age, until the age of seventeen or graduation from a high school, whichever occurs first. Students are entitled to a free public education until the age of 21 years of age or until they receive a high school diploma, whichever occurs first. Board Policy 207 governs attendance.
A student will be in attendance if present at any place where school is in session by authority of the Board of School Directors, or at the place where the student is (1) receiving approved tutorial instruction or health care, (2) engaged either in an approved and properly supervised work study or career education program, or (3) receiving approved homebound instruction.
State law requires that all students be in school for 180 days each year during the hours and operations that school is in session. The Board of School Directors sets the calendar for these days.
It is mandatory for all children of compulsory school age having a legal residence in Pennsylvania to attend a day school in which the subjects and activities prescribed by the Standards of the State Board of Education are taught in the English language, except children in the following situations found in sections 1327, 1327.1, 1329, and 1330 of the Pennsylvania School Code:
Receiving approved tutorial instruction or health care.
Engaged either in an approved and properly supervised work study or career education program.
Receiving approved homebound instruction.
Pennsylvania School Code section 1330 states that a 16-year-old student who is regularly engaged in any useful and lawful employment or service during the time the public schools are in session, and who holds an employment certificate issued according to the law is exempt from compulsory attendance. A student who is 16 years of age or older to be exempt from compulsory education must be engaged in useful and lawful employment or service for 40 hours per week or more.