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If you are new to homeschooling or just considering homeschooling in New Mexico, it can look a little overwhelming, but it is really not! New Mexico makes it pretty easy for parents to homeschool their children, you just need to make sure that you have your ducks in a row so to speak before you get started.
New Mexico Homeschool Laws
Before you can begin homeschooling in New Mexico you will need to notify the New Mexico Public Education Department (NMPED) within 30 days of withdrawing your student from public school and beginning a homeschool program. If you are homeschooling from the start (your child has never been enrolled in public school) you will need to notify the NMPED on or before August 1st of each year that you intend to homeschool.
New Mexico will allow parents or legal guardians to homeschool their own children provided the parent providing the education has a high school diploma or GED.
New Mexico is very lenient when it comes to its curriculum requirements provided that it includes reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies, and science. Beyond that, you can include, or not any other subjects that you would like or that your students have taken a special interest in.
Homeschool students in New Mexico are required to attend school for 180 days or reach a set number of minimal instructional hours. For students in grades Kindergarten through sixth grade, the minimum instructional hours are 5 ½ hours per day or 990 total hours per year. For students in grades 7 -12, the requirements are six hours per day or 1080 instructional hours for the year.
Testing and Record Keeping
Besides up-to-date immunization records, there are no record-keeping requirements for homeschooling in New Mexico. That doesn’t mean that it’s not a good idea to keep some of your student’s work throughout the school year so that you and your students can see and evaluate their progress.
There are also no testing requirements in New Mexico since the law was repealed in 2001. Note, that this could change, and that is why it is important to be aware of the homeschool laws in your state and to find homeschooling resources that can help keep you up to date.
There are no specific high school graduation requirements in New Mexico. Your student can graduate by receiving a parent-provided diploma, or by receiving a non-New Mexico diploma from a correspondence course or distance learning school.
You can also have your students graduate by taking the New Mexico High School Equivalency Credential, either the General Education Development Test (GED) or the High School Equivalency Test (HiSET). If your child plans to pursue an undergraduate education taking the GED or HiSET may make them eligible for funding through the New Mexico Legislative Lottery Scholarship.
Resources for Homeschooling in New Mexico
Homeschooling is always easier when you know what resources you have available to you, and in New Mexico, there are several that you might find helpful to you. The Christian Association of Parent Educators or CAPE is a non-profit Christian homeschool organization that provides resources to parent educators throughout the state regardless of religious affiliation.
ABQ Homeschoolers is a support group that offers help for homeschoolers across the state as well as field trips, enrichment activities, and social gatherings for families in the Albuquerque area or for those who can travel there.
In addition to these resources, you can also look on social media for homeschooling groups or co-ops in your area. Just type what you are looking for in the search bar and multiple options will appear.
Homeschooling in New Mexico is relatively easy, just make sure that you file the proper paperwork at the beginning of each school year. You can find ample resources, and support from other homeschooling families in New Mexico and they are a very friendly group, so reach out, make some new friends and start your homeschooling journey!
I’d love to hear from you: are you homeschooling in New Mexico? Give a shout out to your favorite groups, co-ops, or field trip locations in the comments. We’d love to hear about them!
And if you’d love to have a printable resource to use to keep track of state homeschool requirements, key organizations, activities and field trip plans, and curriculum notes, grab a copy of my Curriculum & Activity Planner below (it’s free!):
Interested in learning about homeschooling in another state? Check out the Homeschooling in 50 States Series.
- 15 Homeschool Planners That Will Simplify Your Planning
- Homeschooling Programs: How to Decide Which is Right For You
- Homeschooling a Preschooler: Here’s How to Get Started
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