New Mexico Education Code For Homeschooling
This is not intended to be legal advice and is distributed
for information purposes only. Check for updates at your public
library or online. The Home School Operators Procedures Manual is from the New Mexico State Department of Education site.
Section 22-1-2.1 has been revised
and new laws are in effect as of July 1, 2001.
Compulsory attendance - under 17 years of age.
Parental Qualifications - High School Diploma or equivalent
Testing - Annual Achievement Testing NO
LONGER required as of July 1, 2001.
Record Keeping - Maintain records of disease immunization.
These NO LONGER need to be
furnished to district personnel, just kept at home. You NO LONGER are required to keep attendence
Home School Operators Procedures Manual
Revised May 2008.
Home School Requirements, Section 22-1-2.1., NMSA, 1978
Compulsory School Attendance; Responsibility, Sec. 22-12-2., NMSA, 1978
Enforcement of School Attendance, Section 22-12-2., NMSA, 1978
Immunization Regulation, Section 24-5-1 through 24-5-6., NMSA, 1978
In 1985, amendments to Chapter 22 of New Mexico Statutes Annotated,
(NMSA), 1978, provided a framework in which the right of parents
to home school their children was recognized. On July, 1994,
Senate Bill 202a, as enacted by the Legislature, and signed by
Governor Bruce King, became effective. The Bill amended the definition
of home school in Section 22-1-2 V, NMSA 1978, to read, "the
operation by a parent, legal guardian or other person having
custody of a school-age person who instructs a home study program
that provides a basic academic educational program, including,
but not limited, to reading, language arts, mathematics, social
studies and science." The Bill also removed the requirement
that a home school operator possess a baccalaureate degree or
a waiver of the baccalaureate degree requirement by the State
Superintendent of Public Instruction. The law was changed to
require that a home school operator possess a high school diploma
or its equivalent. The bill also amended the definition of private
school to read, "a school offering (on-site) programs of
instruction not under the control, supervision or management
of a local school board, exclusive of home instruction offered
by the parent, legal guardian or one having custody of the student."
The purpose of the Procedures Manual for Home School Operators in New Mexico is to provide parents, legal
guardians, and local school district officials direction for
implementing the 1994 legislation. Comments and/or questions
specific to this document should be referred to the Management
Support and Intervention Unit (MSIU) at the New Mexico State
Department of Education (NMSDE), 300 Don Gaspar, Santa Fe, New
Mexico 87501. The telephone number for MSIU is (505) 827-6582.
Comments and/or questions specific to assessment and evaluation
of home school students should be referred to the Assessment
and Evaluation Unit at (505) 827-6524.
Section 22-1-2.1. Home School Requirements
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
Any person operating or intending to operate a home school shall:
A. notify the Secretary of Education of the establishment of a home school within
thirty days of its establishment, and notify the Secretary of Education on or
before April 1, of each subsequent year of operation;
B. maintain records of student disease immunization;
C. provide instruction by a person possessing at least a high school diploma
or its equivalent in basic academic educational program, including reading, language arts, mathematics, social studies and science.
Section 22-12-2. Compulsory School Attendance; Responsibility
A. Any qualified student and any person who because of his
age is eligible to become a qualified student as defined by the
Public School Finance Act until attaining the age of majority
shall attend a public school, a private school, a home school
or a state institution. A person shall be excused from this requirement
(1) the person is specifically exempted by law from the provisions
of this section;
(2) the person has graduated from a high school;
(3) the person is at least seventeen years of age and has
been excused by the local school board or its authorized representative
upon a finding that the person will be employed in a gainful
trade or occupation or engaged in an alternative form of education
sufficient for the person's educational needs and the parent,
guardian or other person having custody and control consents;
(4) with consent of the parent [guardian or person having
custody and control] of the person to be excused, the person
is excused from the provisions of this section by the superintendent
of schools of the school district in which the person is a resident
and the person is under eight years of age.
B. A person subject to the provisions of the Compulsory School
Attendance Law shall attend school for at least the length of
time of the school year that is established in the school district
in which the person is a resident.
C. Any parent [guardian or person having custody and control]
of a person subject to the provisions of the Compulsory School
Attendance Law is responsible for the school attendance of that
D. Each local school board and each governing authority of
a private school shall enforce the provisions of the Compulsory
School Attendance Law for students enrolled in their respective
Records and Reports
Section 22-12-7. Enforcement of Attendance Law; Penalty
A. Each local school board and each governing authority of a private school shall
initiate the enforcement of the provisions of the Compulsory School Attendance
Law [Sections 22-12-1 to 22-12-7, NMSA, 1978] for students enrolled in their
B. To initiate enforcement of the provisions of the Compulsory School Attendance
Law, a local school board or governing authority of a private school or its
authorized representatives shall give written notice by certified mail to or by
personal service on the parent, legal guardian or custodian of a student subject to
and in noncompliance with the provisions of the Compulsory School Attendance
C. If violations of the provisions of the Compulsory School Attendance Law
continue after written notice as provided in Subsection B of this section has
occurred, the student shall be reported to the probation services office of the
judicial district where the student resides for an investigation as to whether the
student shall be considered to be a neglected child or a child in need of
supervision and thus subject to the provisions of the Children's Code.
D. If after review by the juvenile probation office of the Children's Court Division
or by the district judge of the Children's Court Division where the student
resides, a determination and finding is made that the nonattendance by the
student may have been caused by the parent, guardian or custodian having
custody of the student then the matter will be referred by the juvenile probation
office or by the Children's Court Division of the district court to the district
attorney's office, or any law enforcement agency having jurisdiction for
appropriate investigation and filing of charges allowed under the Compulsory
School Attendance Law.
E. A parent, guardian or one having custody of the student who, after receiving
written notice as provided in Subsection B of this section and after the matter has
been reviewed in accordance with Subsection D of this section, knowingly
allows the student to continue to violate the Compulsory School Attendance Law
shall be guilty of a petty misdemeanor. Upon the first conviction, a fine of not
less than twenty-five dollars ($25.00) or more than one hundred dollars ($100.00)
may be imposed, or the parent, guardian or one having custody of the student
may be ordered to perform community service. If violations of the Compulsory
School Attendance Law continue, upon the second and subsequent convictions,
the parent, guardian or one having custody of the student who knowingly allows
the student to continue to violate the Compulsory School Attendance Law shall
be guilty of a petty misdemeanor and shall be subject to a fine of not more than
five hundred dollars ($500.00) or incarceration for a period not to exceed six
months, or both.
Section 24-5-1. Immunization Regulations
The Public Health Division of the Department of Health shall, after consultation with the
State Board of Education, promulgate rules and regulations governing the immunization
against diseases deemed to be dangerous to the public health, to be required of children
attending public, private, home or parochial schools in the state. The immunizations
required and the manner and frequency of their administration shall conform to
recommendations of the advisory committee on immunization practices of the United
States department of Health and Human Services and the American academy of
pediatrics. The public health division shall supervise and secure the enforcement of the
required immunization program.
Immunization forms, including the Certificate of Religious/Conscientious Objection to
Immunization form, can be obtained from the local school district, and/or the New
Mexico Department of Health, Public Health Division, 1190 St. Francis Drive, Santa Fe,
New Mexico 87502. The telephone number is (505) 827-2366. While specific forms in
this manual are not required, any alternative form or statement that is utilized must
comply with the requirements set forth in Section 24-5-3, NMSA, 1978, and Department
of Health regulations 7-5-3, NMAC ("Religious Exemption from School Immunization")
and 7.5.2, NMAC ("Immunization Requirement").
Procedures Manual for Home School Operators in New Mexico
~revised May 2008
Before you begin filling out the online form, please look over the manual so you understand the steps that you will need to take.
Online Notification Form
Notify the Secretary of Education within thirty (30) days of the home school's establishment and by April 1st of each subsequent year of operation for renewal. You may do this by completing the Online Notification Form each year.
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