Truth About Homeschooling in Montana and Montana Homeschool Laws

By Dr. Jon

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 Montana. We’ll help you make full use of the educational potential of Montana, let you in on the Montana 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.

Homeschooling in Montana

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The Treasure State

Montana is famous primarily for its beautiful landscapes, but there’s more to it than just that. Some of the most important events in US human rights history took place here, including the first woman in the US Congress – Jeanette Rankin – in 1916.

You and your children can further explore the rich Montana history by visiting the many historic sites, such as the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument, the Conrad Mansion, the First Peoples Buffalo Jump or the Fort Benton Museums & Heritage Complex. There’s plenty to learn about Native-American traditions, the Civil War, and literary history, too!

If your children are more into geography and biology, take them on a beautiful hike towards the Grinnell Glacier, in the world-famous Glacier National Park, admire the breathtaking views of Yellowstone National Park, or take a close look at the local wildlife in the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center. Montana also has some very beautiful lakes for you to go boating on, such as the Flathead Lake, Lake McDonald and the famous Earthquake Lake.

Regardless of your children’s interests, then, Montana has something to offer to everybody.

Montana Homeschool Laws

The Montana homeschool requirements are pretty sensible, and there’s really not a lot of paper work that you have to do.

The first thing to do if you want to homeschool in Montana is to notify the local school district of your intention. There’s no compulsory date for that.

You’ll then have to provide a certain number of instruction hours to your children. If they’re in grade 1-3, the number is 720; for 4-12, it’s 1,020. You’ll have to make sure that you teach the core subjects for each respective grade.

As for bookkeeping, you’ll have to keep attendance and immunization records, and provide them to the local school inspector, if required.

There’s no assessment requirements, and you children can even join the local school as a part-time student. They can also take part in local extracurricular activities.

The one downside is that the local schools are not legally required to offer special needs services, if your children require them. You’ll have to deal with that privately, if that’s your case.

Montana Homeschool Friendliness Grade

We’ve given the Treasure State a B in terms of homeschool friendliness, and it’s only because the Montana homeschool laws could have been just a tad more inclusive. The main issue is the exclusion of homeschooled special needs children from the necessary public services – you’ll have to take care of that by yourself. Other than that, the legal system is down-to-earth and it shouldn’t be an obstacle in your homeschool journey.

Conclusion

Starting your own homeschool in Montana shouldn’t be too difficult. You’ve got a small amount of paper work to put in, and you’ve got to make sure you provide the necessary instruction hours, but other than that, you’re in complete control of your children’s education. Apart from that, the natural beauties of the state are wonderful educational opportunities for you and your children to make the best of – start homeschooling in Montana today, you’re bound to love it!

Resources

http://www.responsiblehomeschooling.org/policy-issues/current-policy/

http://opi.mt.gov/pdf/Measurement/HomeSchoolPacket.pdf - here’s everything you need to know about the Montana homeschooling system

http://www.helenahomeschoolers.com/ - a Montana-based blog with plenty of homeschooling resources and ideas

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