Overview of Nebraska Homeschool Law

This is a layman’s overview of the homeschool law in Nebraska. This is only my interpretation, as a parent who has filed for over 25 years. You need to read over the actual law before you file. This page is not legal, but will give you the basics of what you need to do. Home School Legal Defense Association gives a “legal analysis” at their website for every state. Nebraska Christian Home Educators Association gives more info on homeschooling in NE, including their synopsis of the law, and at the NE Department of Education website you can print out the law and download the forms to file. {One more link for you. If you’re in the North Platte area, check our homeschool group’s website for local homeschool info.}

There are 2 ways you can file an exception to enrolling your child in a state recognized “accredited” school. “Rule 13” is the original, and is filed by parents who have religious convictions for not enrolling their children in “accredited” schools. This law covers home educating families as well as non-accredited private schools. Actually there is no specific “homeschool” statute. We provide information to the state for a “private school” that happens to only have our own children enrolled, and us as their only teachers. “Rule 12” is the newer law for those families who desire to homeschool but do not have “religious convictions”. I understand that the basic “requirements” are the same for it as “Rule 13”, but what I list here is based on my experience with “Rule 13”.

In Nebraska we file as a private, non-accredited school. We are not asking “permission” to home educate. We are informing them of our private school and the students attending it, in accordance to their statute. “Permission” (actually requirement) has been given to us by God, not the state. The information required to comply with the NE state law are:

Hours Planned

  • A list of “number of hours per month” that we will be educating. These hours must add up to 1032 hours for elementary grades, and 1080 for high school grades. When you receive a “Rule 13” packet, (printed from online, or mailed to you from the NDE when you request it) you will get a “Supplemental Sheet” (several pages) to fill out, making it perhaps easier for you to make sure you give the proper information. However, you are not required to use this form, only to provide the information required by Rule 13. (I write my own, which fits on one page, and only needs very minor changes from year to year.) The hours can be spread out over the months July through June. You are to file 30 days before you begin, and by July 15th for subsequent years.

Scope & Sequence

  • A scope and sequence for each grade we are teaching for each of the following subjects: Math, Language Arts, Social Studies, Science, and Health. We, of course, are not limited to those subjects (and hopefully we will NOT limit our children to those) but they are the only ones the state is concerned with. If we are using one of the popular/known curricula, we can just list the name of it. The state is already familiar with the scope and sequence of such. If we use something new or more obscure, or plan our own we must include that scope and sequence with our “filing papers”.

Monitor Information

  • Information about each “monitor” must also be included. The “monitor” is the person responsible for overseeing each class. List the parent or both that will be “overseeing.” You also need to include their “educational background” and teaching experience. There are no requirements, such as college graduate or teaching degree or such. Don’t hesitate to list any teaching experiences you have – even if none of them are in “state recognized” positions.

Birth Certificate

  • A certified Birth Certificate must be filed for each child the first year that child is homeschooled, before Oct. 1. In Nebraska, you are required to file for children ages 7-16. You must have a “certified” official birth certificate. They will return it. Also they are now requiring that you file “Intent to homeschool” papers with your local school district the year your child turns 6, if that will be before Jan. 1. A copy of this affidavit can be found at the NCHEA site.

Notarized Forms

  • 3 other provided forms must be filled out and notarized. 2 Parent’s forms (one for each parent) stating that you are sending your child/children to a non-accredited school and naming the “Parent Representative” of the school and the children’s names and ages. The 3rd form, is a “Parent Representative” form. The Parent Representative (which is either parent) is the person responsible for filing the calendar hours and scope and sequence, and monitor information. This form states that they are doing that. The Supplemental Sheets, listed above, contain that information.

What Does the State Require?

This article is part of our series for those New to Home Education.

Home educating your own children is legal in all 50 states. To find out what your state requires, follow one of the 3 suggestions below.

1. Find homeschool information for any state.

Home School Legal Defense Association has information on each state’s home school laws, and various court cases and bills presented on its website. Click on your state on this page. Some of the info is only available to members of HSLDA. We highly recommend that all home educators join this great organization that has won and protects our homeschool freedoms and represents homeschool parents in court.

2. Find helpful information for homeschooling in YOUR state.

For additional information, that can perhaps more easily explain your options than either of the other ways listed here, we highly recommend checking out the website of your state homeschool organization. HSLDA lists state and local organizations (use the link above and click your state.)

Nebraska’s state organization is Nebraska Christian Home Educators Association.

3. Get the forms and actual law for your state. 

Google Department of Education homeschool {your state}. This is probably the least helpful way, check your state site and HSLDA first. But you may need to go here to get your forms – if so there is probably a link to them on your state’s site, as well as the HSLDA site.

BONUS! Basic Overview of Nebraska Homeschool Law – in layman’s terms. You need to read over the actual law before your file, but my article will give you the basics of what you need to do. HSLDA gives a “legal analysis” at their website.

First Things First

This article is part of our series for those New to Home Education.

Thinking through why you choose to educate your children at home is the first step to developing your own educational philosophy. Don’t let the terminology scare you off. This just means what you believe will make for a good education. What your goals and beliefs about education are.

You may be thinking, I just want to know what books I need to buy to get started, not get into some philosophical discussion. But before we move on, you must realize that behind every school, every teacher, every educational publishing company, every educational resource is an educational philosophy. You may not think you have one or want one,  but you do. If you haven’t thought it through, yours is most likely the one you learned from your own government education.

Whether you have thought yours through or not, there will be one presented to you through every resource you use. It is wise that you know what theirs is and if it lines up with what your goals and beliefs for your children’s education is. If it doesn’t, not only will you be working against your own purposes, but you will also be frustrated because what you’re wanting in your children’s education isn’t being accomplished.

Many believe that there is either Christian education or “secular” education. But it goes far deeper than that. (See our Seminar for more on this.) All education is religious. There is no such thing as a neutral education. The religion being taught is either Biblical Christianity or some other religion. Either God is being glorified as God in everything taught, or some other entity is being lifted up as god. This is only the beginning of your beliefs about education.

There are several questions you need to ask yourself about your educational beliefs. You may not be able to answer them all until you have read and thought more about education, but begin thinking about them now, as your answers to these questions will determine what resources and methods will work best for educating your children at home.

  • What are our reasons for wanting to home educate?
  • Is home education for us a conviction, a preference, a passing whim (let’s just try it)?
  • What is the purpose of education?
  • What do we believe should be the role of the teacher? the students?
  • What do we believe are the most important things to teach/learn?
  • How do we believe they should be taught/learned?

We could dig much deeper than this, and explore the philosophies of educational philosophy, but for now, this will get you off to a good start and enable you to choose an approach and resources that will be a good fit for your family. The Freedom & Simplicity™ of Lifestyle Education through Discipleship™ Seminar presents Biblical insights to help you renew your mind to develop a Biblical philosophy of education.

Why Homeschool?

This article is part of our series for those New to Home Education.

Parents have many different reasons for wanting to educate their children at home. But most of their reasons probably fit within 1 (or all) of 3 categories–religious (Biblical), academic, and social.

It may be that you desire to teach your children everything through a Biblical perspective (as we do), or aren’t happy that the government schools are teaching against a Biblical perspective. Perhaps you believe the government has no business in education. Perhaps you have other religious beliefs that influence your choice.

Perhaps you know that most home educated children score higher than government school students and you want to give your child that advantage. Perhaps you want your children to be able to move at their own pace and focus their studies on their strengths. Perhaps your child has learning challenges and you want to provide the extra time for individual tutoring to help him succeed.

Perhaps you have social reasons. Perhaps your child is being bullied. Perhaps you don’t care for their daily “socialization” to be with drug dealers, rebels, and sexual deviants. Perhaps you want to develop a closer relationship with your children and want them to develop a closer relationship with each other. Perhaps you want them to learn to comfortably socialize with people of all ages.

Thinking through and gaining a good understanding of why you home educate will help you explain your position to others, and also help you remain steadfast when you’re facing tough days. The following resources will help you reason through these questions.

IndoctriNation (DVD) produced by Colin Gunn is a great place to start.

The Children of Caesar (DVD) by Voddie Baucham is also very highly recommended (by me). View it on our posts through YouTube.

Excused Absence: Should Christian Kids Leave Public Schools? by Douglas Wilson (available on their website) is perhaps the hardest hitting from a Biblical standpoint. As Marlin Detweiler from Veritas Press put it, “In this tiny volume, Doug Wilson makes the case for Christian education so strongly that, aside from willful disobedience to God’s Word, Christian parents have no reason to continue educating their children in officially agnostic public schools.” The case Mr. Wilson presents is not specifically for home education but for strong “distinctively Christian schools or home schools.” If you are looking for a “soft, nice, relativistic, make you feel good about doing whatever” book, this is NOT it.

Homeschooling: the Right Choice by Christopher Klicka (deceased,) formerly of the Home School Legal Defense Association has been revised and updated for the 21st Century. Mr. Klicka points out the failure of public education in 3 critical areas – academic, moral, and philosophical, as well as the “rising hope of home schooling”. (available at HSLDA)

Is Public Education Necessary? by Samuel Blumenfeld presents the myths that nearly all of us have/had bought about public education and its history. Probably the grand-daddy of them all.

Let Us Highly Resolve by David Quine – not specifically about leaving public schools, but rather about resolving to equip our children to live strong Christian lives in the 21st Century.

Basic Homeschooling Workshop by Gregg Harris (available at his site) and and his Advanced Homeschooling Workshop were the introduction that “sold us” on not just removing our children from the negative influence of public schools, but to being sold out on home education.

Dumbing Us Down by John Taylor Gatto (and the Underground History of American Education). Gatto, an “insider” of public education and award winning teacher who left the system, now exposes and speaks out against it.


There are many other excellent books on this topic, many of them from the early days of the modern home education movement, that forged the way and provided the foundation for us. We are all indebted to those homeschool pioneers. A few of those titles, that are worthy inclusions if you are studying the history of government education and the rise of Christian home education, are:

  • Why So Many Christians are Going Home to School by Ellyn Davis is an easy, quick read on some of the problems of institutionalized learning. It was the first book of this kind we read, and although we had deep convictions for home educating, it pointed out many reasons we hadn’t thought of.
  • Government Nannies: The Cradle-to-Grave Agenda of Goals 2000 & Outcome Based Education by Cathy Duffy exposes the agenda of the NEA and government schools. If you want to take a look at the forerunner of Common Core Standards find this book.
  • Who Owns the Children? by Blair Adams and Joel Stein is an excellent book that dispels those myths that it is in our children’s best interest (and the state’s responsibility and right) for the state to educate our children.
  • The Day they Padlocked the Church by H. Edward Rowe is about families in Nebraska that fought the fight and paid the price to get the law that we home educate under.
  • Child Abuse in the Classroom by Phyllis Schaffly
  • The Bible, Homeschooling, and the Law by Karl Reed

New to Homeschool? Start Here!

Congratulations on your decision to educate your children at home, or your decision to check into it. You no doubt have some questions that are common to most. How do I homeschool? Where do I find information? What do I need to do to start? Although this site is primarily about how to home educate by the Lifestyle Education through Discipleship™ approach, this series of posts will be helpful to anyone. It will also help you determine if Lifestyle Education through Discipleship™  is the right approach for your family.

What do I need to do to start? is comprised of 3 main questions: What does my state require? Where do I get my curriculum? What else do I need to know to get started? Parents generally think of them in this order (and sometimes don’t even think of the last one) but I think this is the reverse order of importance. The 3rd one is also comprised of a few other questions we’ll cover in this series. Perhaps a few you haven’t considered. These questions are covered in this series. As to where to find information and how to home educate, if you choose to apply Lifestyle Education through Discipleship™ that information will be found on this website and in our Exclusive Resources. As for other approaches, if you choose one of those, some of the links listed in the following articles will help you.


Why should our family home school?

What style of home education is right for our family? And where do I get information and resources for that style? (Several articles to help you sort out this area.)

What does the state require?