Homeschooling in Nevada – by Terri Kurcab at Homeschool Gardens
Nevada is a wonderful state for homeschooling. I could be a bit biased, but it is definitely one of the easiest states in which to homeschool. We’ve had great homeschool leaders who have fought tirelessly to secure and maintain our freedom to educate our children free from government oversight. HSLDA (Home School Legal Defense Association) ranks Nevada as a low regulation state. Nevada continually ranks as one of the worst states for schools. Low school performance and fantastic homeschool freedom are a great combination for creating a vibrate homeschool community.
Defining Homeschool in Nevada
In Nevada, homeschool parents are the directors of their children’s education. Only parents (and legal guardians) can homeschool their own children. You can’t outsource homeschooling your child to someone else. Nevada Homeschool Network is the main advocacy group that helps protect our right to homeschool. You can find all of the details about Nevada’s homeschool laws here.
We do have online charter schools which are often confused with homeschooling. Those are “public school at home” programs. Even though they’re done at home, it’s not homeschooling according to Nevada’s laws. Many online charter school students participate in homeschool groups, and no one cares about this distinction. However, it’s important to know the difference because it does matter when it comes to curriculum, testing, and paperwork. Here’s a detailed document that lays out all the different schooling options in Nevada.
Becoming an Official Homeschooler in Nevada
Homeschoolers must file a Notice of Intent to Homeschool before the child’s 7th birthday or within 10 days after withdrawing from a school. You also need to note your educational plan for English, math, science, and social studies for the current skill level of the child. Curriculum choices do not need to be approved by anyone but you. This plan doesn’t need to be extremely detailed. They just want to know that you’ve put some thought into homeschooling. You don’t have to stick to this plan if you change your mind. However, those are the subjects we are required to teach.
After this is filed, you’ll receive a receipt (for each child) as proof that you homeschool. That’s it! You only need to resubmit the form if you move. We don’t have to turn in portfolios, take standardized tests, or check in with advisors. The parent issues the diploma and transcript. We have the freedom to educate our children as we see fit, but that also means the responsibility falls to us.
Homeschool students have the option of participating in classes, activities, and special education programs at public and charter schools if there’s space in the class. This most often occurs at the high school level with sports and advanced classes, but students can participate in other classes at all grade levels. A Notice of Intent of Homeschooled Child to Participate needs to be filled out.
Freedom from government oversight also means no government funding. The parents are financially responsible for the costs of homeschooling. In 2015, Nevada tried to set up an ESA-type program to fund school choice. This would have included homeschoolers (along with government regulation and oversight). The program ran into roadblocks, and our governor recently repealed the law.
A Vibrant Homeschool Community
Being on our own without a charter school or advisor to supervise our children’s progress can be scary, but we have such an active homeschool community that we are never really on our own. It’s easy to surround ourselves with families who are further along on this journey. There are endless opportunities for group classes, structured co-ops, field trips, park days, and nature hikes. There are groups that cater to specific styles of homeschooling, and others that are open to anyone. Some groups love structured activities. Others focus on child-led play and exploration through park days and nature hikes. The only hard part is not being able to do everything!
Here are some fantastic links for more information about homeschooling in Nevada as well as just a few of our many homeschool groups throughout the state.
Nevada Homeschool Resources
- Nevada Homeschool Network – This is our main advocacy group. Their website is a wealth of information about our homeschool laws.
- HSLDA – You can find their information about homeschooling in Nevada here.
Southern Nevada Homeschool Groups
- RISE Education Resource Center
- Las Vegas Valley Homeschool Network
- ELEVATE Homeschool Community
- City Lights Homeschoolers of Las Vegas
- Las Vegas Homeschool Support Group
- Henderson Christian Homeschoolers
- Henderson Homeschool Explorers
- Nellis Homeschool Community
- Classical Conversations – Las Vegas
Northern Nevada Homeschool Groups
- Northern Nevada Home Schools
- EAGLE Home School Co-Op
- F.A.I.T.H. Homeschoolers
- North Carson Home School Cooperative
Homeschooling in Nevada is very straight forward. We have simple laws that protect our freedom to educate our children as we see fit. Homeschoolers have built many thriving support networks and communities throughout the state. These groups provide endless opportunities to connect with other homeschool families so that we can all support each other in this amazing journey.
Looking for laws, activities and groups in another state, pick a new state.
Terri Kurcab is a homeschool mom who lives in Nevada with her husband and their two daughters. Nature has provided the cornerstone of their homeschool journey which began in 2013. National and State park visits, mountain hikes, and outdoor-based learning adventures are what Terri and the girls can be found doing most often. When homeschool is not in session, you can find Terri in the garden or spending time with a good book and a cup of tea. Her blog, Homeschool Gardens, is where she shares her family’s homeschool and life journey.