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Thousands of Virginia students aren't required to get an education

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 4 2015 10:31 a.m. MDT

Our take: A study by the University of Virginia may result in that state refining a law that allows a religious exemption from public school attendance. The study found that thousands of families are granted a religious exemption under state law that allows them to take their children out of public school for religious reasons. But the law doesn't require those families to exercise the exemption to provide their children an education.

"Nearly 7,000 Virginia children whose families have opted to keep them out of public school for religious reasons are not required to get an education, the only children in the country who do not have to prove they are being home-schooled or otherwise educated, according to a study.

"Virginia is the only state that allows families to avoid government intrusion once they are given permission to opt out of public school, according to a report from the University of Virginia's School of Law. It's a law that is defended for promoting religious freedom and criticized for leaving open the possibility that some children will not be educated."

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