Laws & Policies

“Is homeschooling legal in Ontario, Canada?” Yes!

In this section of the website, we help you find the answers to all your questions about the legalities of homeschooling in Ontario, including what the education law says, what the government’s current homeschooling policy is, and special case scenarios like homeschooling while you’re on ODSP or Ontario Works. See the full Laws & Policies menu at the bottom of this page.

Know Your Rights

When finding out what your legal rights are, it’s always best to refer to the original source. In each relevant page you will find some excerpts of laws and policies that are relevant to homeschooling, as well as links to the full text of each source document. Also relevant are the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms:

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Canada is among the signing nations of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights of the General Assembly of the United Nations. While it states [article 26(1)] that elementary education shall be compulsory, it also states [article 26(3)] that

Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children. [emphasis added]

Because the public school system represents a gathering of people (schoolchildren and schoolteachers, etc) under a particular set of internal rules and regulations by which one is bound only if one is associating with it (- and not, for instance, if one is associating with a private school), one might also argue that it constitutes the equivalent of an association. In which case, article 20(2) applies:

No one may be compelled to belong to an association.

When there is a dispute concerning the legitimacy of the claim to be providing “satisfactory instruction,” the principle underlying article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights applies:

Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him. [emphasis added]

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms has a similar article:

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

When there is a dispute concerning the legitimacy of the claim to be providing “satisfactory instruction,” the principle underlying article 11 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies:

11. Any person charged with an offence has the right (d) to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to law in a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal; [emphasis added]

To read the full text of the laws, policies, and documents on human rights that are referred to in this legal section:

To find out more about home education legislation in other provinces:

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