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Digest of Education Statistics
2020 Tables and Figures All Years of Tables and Figures Most Recent Full Issue of the Digest


Table 234.10. Age range for compulsory school attendance and special education services, and policies on year-round schools and kindergarten programs, by state: Selected years, 2000 through 2020
State Compulsory attendance Compulsory
special education
services, 20041
Year-round schools, 2008 Kindergarten programs, 2020
2000 2002 2004 2006 2010 2015 2017 2020 Has policy on year-round schools Has districts with
year-round schools
School districts required to offer Attendance required
Program Full-day program
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
Alabama 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16 2 7 to 16   7 to 17   6 to 17 3 6 to 17 3 6 to 17   6 to 21       Yes   X X    
Alaska 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16 2 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 4 3 to 22       Yes          
Arizona 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16   3 to 21   ---   ---   X      
Arkansas 5 to 17 2,3 5 to 17 2,3 5 to 17 2,3 5 to 17 2,3 5 to 17 2,3 5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 21   X   Yes   X X X  
California 6 to 18 2 6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   Birth to 21 5 X   Yes   X      

Colorado
---   ---   7 to 16   7 to 16   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17   3 to 21       Yes   X X    
Connecticut 7 to 16   7 to 18 2 7 to 18 2 5 to 18 3 5 to 18 3 5 to 18 3 5 to 18 3 5 to 18   3 to 21       ---   X   X  
Delaware 5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16 2 5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16   Birth to 20       Yes   X X X  
District of
    Columbia
---   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   ---   ---   ---   X X X  
Florida 6 to 16 6 6 to 16 6 6 to 16 6 6 to 16 6 6 to 16 6 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   3 to 21   X   Yes   (7)      

Georgia
6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   Birth to 21 8     Yes   X      
Hawaii 6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   Birth to 19       (9)   X X X  
Idaho 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   3 to 21       Yes          
Illinois 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 17   7 to 17   7 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17   3 to 21   X   Yes   X (10)    
Indiana 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 18 2 7 to 18 2 7 to 18   7 to 18   7 to 18   3 to 22       Yes   X (10)    

Iowa
6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16 11 6 to 16 11 6 to 16 11 Birth to 21   X   Yes   X   (7)  
Kansas 7 to 18 2 7 to 18 2 7 to 18 2 7 to 18 2 7 to 18 2 7 to 18   7 to 18   7 to 18   3 to 21 12     ---   X   (7)  
Kentucky 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16 2 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 18 13 6 to 18   6 to 16 13 Birth to 21       Yes   X      
Louisiana 7 to 17   7 to 17   7 to 17 2 7 to 18 2 7 to 18 2 7 to 18   7 to 18   7 to 18   3 to 21 14     Yes   X X X 15
Maine 7 to 17   7 to 17   7 to 17 2 7 to 17 2 7 to 17 2 7 to 17   7 to 17   6 to 17   5 to 19 14,16     ---   X   (7)  

Maryland
5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16 3 5 to 17   5 to 18   5 to 18   Birth to 21   X   ---   X X X  
Massachusetts 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16   6 to 16 17 6 to 16 17 3 to 21 8 (18)   ---   X   (7)  
Michigan 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   Birth to 25   X   Yes          
Minnesota 7 to 18 2 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 17   7 to 17   7 to 17   Birth to 21   X   Yes          
Mississippi 6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17 19 Birth to 20       ---   X X (7)  

Missouri
7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 17   7 to 17 2,3 7 to 17 2,3 7 to 17 2,3 Birth to 20       Yes 20 X      
Montana 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 3 to 18 14     ---   X (10)    
Nebraska 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   Birth to 20       Yes   X   X 15
Nevada 7 to 17   7 to 17   7 to 17   7 to 17   7 to 18 2 7 to 18   7 to 18   7 to 18   Birth to 21 5     Yes   X   X  
New Hampshire 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   3 to 21       ---          

New Jersey
6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   5 to 21       ---     (21) (21)  
New Mexico 5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18 2 5 to 18 2 5 to 18 2 5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   3 to 21   X   Yes   X   X  
New York 6 to 16 2 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16 22 6 to 16 22 6 to 16 22 6 to 16 22 6 to 16 22 Birth to 20       ---          
North Carolina 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   5 to 20   X   Yes   X X (15)  
North Dakota 7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   7 to 16   3 to 21       No   X      

Ohio
6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   3 to 21   X   ---   X   X  
Oklahoma 5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   Birth to 21 14     Yes   X X X 23
Oregon 7 to 18   7 to 18   7 to 18 2 7 to 18   7 to 18   7 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   3 to 20       Yes   X      
Pennsylvania 8 to 17   8 to 17   8 to 17 2 8 to 17 2 8 to 17 2 8 to 17   8 to 17   6 to 18   6 to 21   X 20 --- 20     X  
Rhode Island 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 18 2 5 to 18 2 5 to 18   3 to 21       ---   X X X  

South Carolina
5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 16   5 to 17 3 5 to 17 3 5 to 17   5 to 17   5 to 17   3 to 21 24     ---   X X X  
South Dakota 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 18 2 6 to 18 2 6 to 18 2 5 to 18   Birth to 21   X   ---   X   X  
Tennessee 6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17 3 6 to 17 3 6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   3 to 21 5 X   Yes   X X X  
Texas 6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 19   6 to 19   3 to 21   X   Yes   X (10)    
Utah 6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   3 to 22       Yes   X      

Vermont
7 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 6 to 16   3 to 21       --- 20 X      
Virginia 5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18 2 5 to 18 2,3 5 to 18   5 to 18   5 to 18   2 to 21   X   Yes   X X X  
Washington 8 to 17 2 8 to 17 2 8 to 16 2 8 to 18   8 to 18   8 to 18   8 to 18   8 to 18   3 to 21 24     Yes   X X    
West Virginia 6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 16   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 17   6 to 16   5 to 21 25 X   Yes   X X X  
Wisconsin 6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   6 to 18   3 to 21       Yes   X   X 26
Wyoming 6 to 16 2 6 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16 2 7 to 16   3 to 21       ---   X (27) (7)  
---Not available.
X Denotes that the state has a policy. A blank denotes that the state does not have a policy.
1 Most states have a provision whereby education is provided up to a certain age or completion of secondary school, whichever comes first.
2 Child may be exempted from compulsory attendance if he/she meets state requirements for early withdrawal with or without meeting conditions for a diploma or equivalency.
3 Parent/guardian may delay child's entry until a later age per state law/regulation.
4 If a parent or legal guardian of a 6-year-old child enrolls the child in first grade, the child is subject to compulsory education provisions.
5 Student may continue in the program if 22nd birthday falls before the end of the school year.
6 Attendance is compulsory until age 18 for Manatee County students, unless they earn a high school diploma prior to reaching their 18th birthday.
7 Not specified in statute, rules, or regulations.
8 Through age 21 or until child graduates with a high school or special education diploma or equivalent.
9 Some schools operate on a multitrack system; the schools are open year round, but different cohorts start and end at different times.
10 District must offer either a half-day or full-day program.
11 Children who are 4 or 5 years old and enrolled in a school district are considered to be compulsory attendance age unless their parent or legal guardian notifies the school district in writing of their intent to remove the child from enrollment.
12 To be determined by rules and regulations adopted by the state board.
13 All districts adopted a policy to raise the upper compulsory school age from 16 to 18. The policy took effect for most districts in the 2015-16 school year.
14 Children from birth through age 2 are eligible for additional services.
15 Attendance is required unless the student otherwise satisfactorily passes an academic readiness screening upon enrollment in grade 1. In North Carolina, the initial entry point into school is kindergarten, but a principal may override this for an exceptionally mature student and place the child in grade 1.
16 Must be age 5 before October 15 and not age 20 before start of school year.
17 Each school committee is permitted to establish its own minimum age for school attendance, provided that it is not older than the mandatory minimum age established by the state.
18 Policies about year-round schools are decided locally.
19 Compulsory school age includes any child who is 5 years old or will be 5 years old on or before September 1 and has enrolled in a full-day public school kindergarten program.
20 State did not participate in 2008 online survey. Data are from 2006.
21 Abbott Districts are required to offer full-day kindergarten, and students are required to attend.
22 Local boards of education can require school attendance until age 17 unless employed. In Syracuse, New York City, Rochester, Utica, Buffalo, Cohoes, Watervliet, and Yonkers, districts are required to offer full-day kindergarten and children are required to attend full-day kindergarten.
23 Minimum half-day attendance is required.
24 Student may complete school year if 21st birthday occurs while attending school.
25 Children with severe disabilities may begin receiving services at age 3.
26 Children must attend in districts that offer kindergarten.
27 School districts must establish and maintain relationships with a district that offers full-day kindergarten.
NOTE: The Education of the Handicapped Act (EHA) Amendments of 1986 make it mandatory for all states receiving EHA funds to serve all 3- to 18-year-old disabled children.
SOURCE: Council of Chief State School Officers, Key State Education Policies on PK–12 Education, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, and 2008; Education Commission of the States (ECS), ECS StateNotes, Compulsory School Age Requirements, retrieved August 9, 2010, from http://www.ecs.org/clearinghouse/86/62/8662.pdf; ECS StateNotes, Special Education: State Special Education Definitions, Ages Served, retrieved October 13, 2021, from http://www.ldonline.org/article/5609/; ECS StateNotes, Compulsory School Age Requirements, retrieved May 19, 2015, from http://www.ecs.org/clearinghouse/01/18/68/11868.pdf; ECS StateNotes, 50-State Comparison: Free and Compulsory School Age Requirements, retrieved April 2, 2021, from https://www.ecs.org/50-state-comparison-free-and-compulsory-school-age-requirements/; ESC StateNotes, Does the state require the district to offer kindergarten and if so, full day or half day? What exemptions exist for districts?, retrieved April 2, 2021, from https://internal-search.ecs.org/comparisons/state-k-3-policies-07; ESC StateNotes, Does the state require children to attend kindergarten?, retrieved April 2, 2021, from https://internal-search.ecs.org/comparisons/state-k-3-policies-06; and supplemental information retrieved from various state websites. (This table was prepared April 2021.)

2020 Tables and Figures All Years of Tables and Figures Most Recent Full Issue of the Digest