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A Complete Guide To Homeschooling In Montana

Homeschooling is completely legal across the United States, but each state has its own set of rules and requirements that you need to follow.

Most states are pretty relaxed in their approach to homeschooling, but there are some that require a bit more preparation.

Like all the other states, it is completely legal to homeschool your children in Montana.

Homeschooling In Montana

This state is quite relaxed in its approach to homeschooling, so as long as you stay within the parameters that are already set, you can get started in no time at all.

If you are new to homeschooling and you want to know more, then we are here to help. We have put together a complete guide to homeschooling in Montana.

This guide will cover all the basics and give you a better idea of what to expect when you plan on homeschooling in the state.

Requirements For Homeschooling In Montana

The laws and requirements needed to be met for homeschooling in Montana aren’t too difficult to follow, but it is strongly suggested that you get as many of these things in order before you start homeschooling.

Sorting these things out just means that you are well within the required laws, and you can focus more on teaching your kids.

The main requirements needed for homeschooling in Montana are as follows:

You must file a notice with your county superintendent stating that you are going to start homeschooling your child. It is suggested that you do this at least 14 days before you start homeschooling.

You must maintain consistent attendance and immunization records.

When planning your curriculum, you must make sure that it includes the required subjects of study in Montana.

These subjects include language arts, math, social studies, science, health, arts, and career education.

You must make sure that you are teaching the required amount of hours in the state. The hours required are 720 hours for grades 1-3 and 1,080 hours for grades 4-12.

You must make sure that you are complying with the required health and safety regulations to homeschool in your home.

You can talk to your school district or county superintendent for more information about this.

As long as you follow these rules and requirements, you should have no issues in homeschooling in the state of Montana.

Most of these requirements are incredibly straightforward but do not hesitate to contact your school district or county superintendent for advice or clarity if needs be.

Qualifications For Homeschooling In Montana

Montana is widely regarded as an incredibly homeschool-friendly state. A big reason for this is that they actually don’t have any official qualification laws that parents need to follow in order to homeschool their kids.

If you are a parent in Montana and you decide that you want to homeschool your children, you do not need your high school diploma or equivalent, and you certainly don’t need any higher education qualifications.

As long as you meet the other requirements needed in order to homeschool, you will not get in trouble for your own lack of qualifications. This isn’t an issue in the state of Montana.

Homeschooling Recordkeeping In Montana

When it comes to recordkeeping, the only types of records you need to keep are attendance and immunization records.

This is in case the superintendent needs or requests them. It is important to keep your children’s attendance and immunization records up to date.

Aside from this, there are no other official record-keeping laws. Some families do opt to keep a homeschooling portfolio for their children, but this is not essential.

Homeschooling portfolios are only recommended if you have a child who is planning on going to college.

These portfolios should include things like writing assignments, worksheets, artwork, grades, or anything else that is important that will look good on their college application.

Again though, this is not required, just suggested. So, if you do not want to keep a homeschooling portfolio for your children, you do not have to.

Days Required For Homeschooling In Montana

In the state of Montana, rather than days, the required amount of attendance is recorded by hours instead.

These hours vary depending on the grade level your child is learning at, but regardless, you must meet the number of hours required in order to stay within the parameters of homeschooling law.

Between the grades of 1 and 3, homeschooled children are required to learn for no less than 720 hours per academic year.

If your children are between the grades of 4 and 12, this number goes up to 1,080 hours per academic year.

You are free to choose which days and how many hours a day work for you and your children. As long as you meet the hours required, you can create an academic schedule that is optimal for you and your kids.

Homeschooling In Montana

Standardized Testing In Montana

According to homeschooling laws in Montana, homeschooled kids are not required to take part in standardized testing in the state. This means that you don’t have to put your kids in for testing if you both agree not to.

However, some homeschooled children do want to be tested, or their parents want them to. If standardized testing is an avenue that you and your kids wish to explore, you can talk to your local school district for help and advice.

Your school district will provide you with the correct and up-to-date information needed in order to take part in testing from home.

Standardized Testing Dates In Montana

If you are interested in pursuing standardized testing for your children, then it is important to be aware of the dates on which these tests take place.

Generally, standardized testing in Montana takes place during a window that lasts several weeks, so be prepared for a lot of work during this time.

The typical dates for standardized testing in Montana are as follows:

  • Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) – March-May
  • Multi-State Alternate Assessment (MSAA) – March-May
  • Montana Science Assessment (MSA) – March-May
  • Alternate Montana Science Assessment (AMSA) – March-May
  • ACCESS for ELLs – December – January

Subjects Required For Homeschooling In Montana

We have touched on this already, but let’s go over it in a bit more detail now. For the most part, you and your children are free to choose the subjects that are studied and taught. However, there are a few subjects required by law that need to be included in the homeschool curriculum.

The subjects that are required by law in the state of Montana are as follows:

  • Language Arts
  • Math
  • Social Studies
  • Science
  • Health
  • Arts
  • Career Education

At the high school level, you have to teach your kids specific units in specific required subjects, and they are as follows (unit represented by number in brackets):

  • Language arts (4)
  • Science (3)
  • Social studies (3)
  • Mathematics (3)
  • Art (2)
  • World languages (2)
  • Technical education (2)
  • Electives (2)
  • Health enhancement (1)

The required subjects and units should be taught every year, and you can talk to your school district and superintendent to make sure that you are sticking to the requirements that fit in with the law.

You can also offer electives to your children from Middle School grade levels and onwards. Some examples of good elective subjects include:

  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Photography
  • Leadership
  • Finance
  • Writing

It should be noted, however, that the elective subjects are not required by law, but if your children are showing specific interests or abilities that line up with these subjects, it is in both of your best interests to look into them.

Graduation Information For Homeschooled Children In Montana

If you plan on homeschooling your children right up until they graduate high school, there are a couple of key things you need to be aware of.

You can have your child complete a homeschool diploma, but it is very important to know that this diploma will not be recognized by the state of Montana.

If you want your children to go to college or have a recognized qualification, you will need to have them sit a high school equivalency test. In most colleges, they will also need to sit and pass the ACT or the SAT test.

You can find plenty of resources and prep information for ACT and SAT online. There is also plenty of advice regarding these tests.

It is in your best interest, and your children’s interest, to get them a legitimized high school equivalent diploma as it will help with careers and further education in the future.


Homeschooling in Montana isn’t too complicated, and lots of people regard it as one of the most homeschool-friendly states in the whole country.

As long as you follow the laws and requirements provided here and you make sure that you are teaching the required subjects, you should have no issues in homeschooling your children.

The information we have provided here is all the basic stuff you need to know, but it is important that you do more thorough research and make sure to contact your superintendent if you need help.

Learn about homeschooling in Rhode Island next.

Simon Lewis

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