State laws change from time to time and though we try to keep the laws up-to-date at all times please check with the department of education for any changes that may have occurred.
There are many reasons to seriously consider homeschooling: you’re in control of what your children are learning, you get to decide how much time you want to spend on different subjects, you can adapt the material to suit your children’s needs, and you don’t have to worry about your children dealing with schoolyard bullies.
Whether you’ve already made this decision or you just plan to, we’re here to show you how to start homeschooling in ND. We’ll help you make full use of the educational potential of North Dakota, let you in on the North Dakota homeschool laws, and offer you a diverse range of useful online homeschool resources that will guarantee your homeschooling success. Use the infographic and video below to create a homeschool that thrives.
Though not too populated nor extremely famous, North Dakota is a beautiful state – its nickname should tell you that much – and the recent worldwide recession has left it with a booming economy and very low unemployment. Not the worst economic prospects to your children, right?
As the name suggests, North Dakota offers great natural views and wonderful nature parks. Go hiking along the Oxbow Overlook or the Caprock-Coulee Trail, or spend a few days camping and fishing on the Grahams Island State Park.
Your children can learn a lot about history, too. The Frontier Village in Jamestown will take you back to the old days of the early settlers, and the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame in Medora will entertain your little western fans.
The art museums in North Dakota are well worth a visit. The North Dakota Museum of Art in Grand Forks offers a small but beautiful collection, and the Plains Art Museum in Fargo is a great place to see some of the best local and international art.
The North Dakota homeschool statute is one of a kind for a number of reasons. While it’s more demanding than the average, it does offer a few benefits that might make up for the many specific requirements that you’ll have to meet.
The first thing you need to do if you plan to start homeschooling in North Dakota is to file a notice of intent with the local school district, at least 14 days before the beginning of the new school year, and annually, in the subsequent years. You can find more details on what to include in this letter here.
To homeschool your children, you’ll need at least a high school diploma or GED, or else you’ll have to work with a supervising teacher. You’ll have to keep progress records, and your children will have to undergo standardized tests once every two years, beginning with grade 4.
What’s interesting about the ND legal requirements is that they allow you to invoke moral, philosophical or religious reasons to not have your children undergo the standardized testing mentioned above. You can only do that if you have a bachelor’s degree, though.
You’ll have to provide your children with at least 175 days of instruction per year, and you’ll have to cover the equivalent public school subjects. Again, you can find out more by clicking on the link above.
Once your children finish the 12th grade, they can be granted a high school diploma by a private school, if you prove that their level of instruction is adequate. North Dakota is the only state to offer such a possibility.
Finally, you will be able to enroll your children part-time in the local public school, to have them join extracurricular events, and to benefit from public school special needs services.
We’re giving North Dakota a C in terms of homeschool friendliness, but that’s only because it requires a relatively large amount of paper work. However, the fact that it allows you to go through homeschool K - 12 and offer your children a high school diploma is a bonus in itself.
You’re about to begin one of the most important journeys of your life – educating your own children, your own way.
Before you begin, make sure you understand the North Dakota homeschool requirements, as they might be a bit demanding, remember to file a notice of intent, and to test your children every other grade.
Get in touch with local homeschool groups, share ideas and resources, and be a part of one of the most exciting communities of all.
Good luck homeschooling in the Peace Garden State!
Here’s a selection of websites related to homeschooling in ND:
https://www.homeschool-life.com/nd/ndhsa/ - the North Dakota Homeschool Association is a support group offering plenty of useful information, from the letter of intent to homeschool articles
http://www.hslda.org/hs/state/ND/ - the official HSLDA page has everything you need to know about North Dakota homeschool laws