We are an Air Force homeschool family scheduled to report to Kirtland AFB in November. We have exclusively homeschooled our two daughters and we're thrilled to join the homeschool community there in Albuquerque.
I'm familiar with the homeschool laws in NM - and I thought Colorado was a homeschool friendly state!
If anyone has a current contact name/email for the homeschool support group on the base, could you let me know? I tried the email address listed on abqhomeschool.com, and it's invalid.
Also, my daughters both play instruments (violin and cello) and I'm looking for recommendations for music teachers, specifically using the Suzuki method/books.
Lastly, can anyone recommend a good dance school for ballet and tap?
We don't know, yet, where we'll be living in the area. If base housing is available, we may choose that option. Any input about nice areas where we could rent would be great, too!
Hi! We're a Suzuki family and moved from Colorado also! We all love it here, especially the beautiful winter here! They have a wonderful Suzuki pedagogy program at UNM (which if you live on base will be close to you). Google Susan Kempter (Kemptner?) who is the director and you will be AMAZED at the program you happened into! The program is huge and includes violin, viola & cello (the umbrella program has even more music-acting based classe). It includes 14 Saturdays each semester of group lessons (Saturday morning labs beginning at 8am!) so it won't start until August. It's very affordable ($50 a month) and a one person a family scholarship available if financial assistance is needed. It includes a private lesson with one of the interns (my daughter and son is one of them) that is scheduled whenever works for both of you usually at UNM. There's a GREAT music store called Robertson's on Carlisle that is one of the best in the country for instrument repair. My daughter, Hope, who is a graduate student and in the pedagogy program teaches homeschoolers and lab students. She's full through May but may have a couple of openings in June (we're on our own for lessons over the summer), but does have a 4 week trip to Russia in the summer. I don't have info for you about dance. There are quite a few people I've met that live out here in Rio Rancho who are AF. A lot of people rent right now because it's a renters market since house sales are down. The ones I've talked to pay around $800-$900 (Northern Meadows area is a huge housing development center near the "center" of Rio Rancho that is very affordable. The prob is that the "center" is planned for a few years from now so there's no grocery stores/gas stations etc but a TON of people out there. It's about 10 minutes away from the existing city area of Rio Rancho. I rent a bigger home in an expensive area (Rivers Edge areas) and pay $1700. Most don't want to live in Albq because of crime, etc but obviously a ton of people live there too! I decided that my 20 minute drive down the I-25 going south to UNM was about the same as people who actually live in Albq drive through the city to ge there, and this way we live in peace and quiet (we're along the river and have incredible views). If you want I can find my AF friends who live out here so you can chat with them. They're on facebook and so am I. Kara Lanctot
Great advice Kara, it depends on what your comfort zone is and what your view of nice is, some love being closer to the zoo and city happenings, we came from a rural family friendly area and have been disappointed in the city offerings here for family activities we generally leave on the weekends. We are finally finding some gems though. Traffic can be an issue, so we always tend to live near work. I have friends that relocated from other states to new developments near the base and on the other side of the mountain and are moving to Rio Rancho taylor ranch and petroglyph areas , because they end up driving out here for shopping and activities, it is more suburban lots of subdivisions and planned communities. Ours was a company move so they paid our expenses. If you can stay in a hotel and drive around thats your best bet. We stayed at the Drury for two weeks ( they even allow pets) and had no problem finding a very nice rental in a great subdivision ( although its a little cookie cuuter, and we plan to buy in a greener ara) they even had computers you could use for your search and an indoor pool.You could start out at the base and work your way out to see what you like........ best of luck!~ Tina this is the site I use, its easy to find what your looking for
We're native New Mexican, but we also moved back here from Colorado (about 10 years ago tho) and I've spent many, many hours on the drive back and forth since (family/land). We also have ties to the base, as my daughter is a cadet in the Air Force Auxilliary, the Civil Air Patrol. We live in the university area, which is close-by (as Kara mentioned).
South of the university (closer to the base) is the student ghetto area, aptly named. North of the university are the larger, nicer homes (around the golf course, law, and medical schools). The 5 minute drive to base (from anywhere near UNM) is incredibly nice during the rush hour, but then of course then it's the 15 minute security checks on the way in (during rush hours). As a benchmark, it took us 1 hour, 15 minutes from the base exit to drive to Southern Blvd in Rio Rancho, late at night with no traffic at all (we did it every week for a while there). You can use maps.google.com to get an idea of approximate times around the area.
The KAFB Homeschoolers are quite alive and active. The last I heard, Julie was still the contact there: Julie Akers (firstname.lastname@example.org). Otherwise, going through channels would probably be a quick call to the Family Advocacy Program for specific contact info, class information and times at 846-0139.
As you can see from abqhomeschoolers and several of the resources mentioned above, Albuq. has an excellent homeschooling community (IMHO). In addition to the UNM music program mentioned above (which I hear wonderful things about), there are also a few homeschool bands around town. My 13yo daughter switched from violin to Celtic, Bluegrass, and Oldtyme fiddle, and we commute to the east mountains for her fiddle classes. However, I've found Robertsons to be extremely overpriced and that both the violin shops in Santa Fe to be better quality for much le$$.
For dance, you have several options here in town. Sandra's School of Dance is a highly competitive, polished, and slightly pricy dance studio for the serious student of ballet, tap, and jazz. On the other extreme, the Keshet Dance Studio is a fun and relaxed environment that teaches jazz, tap, ballet and contemporary, but they aren't trying to get their students into Juliard or anything. My daughter also went from one to the other and then settled for one in-between (that has since closed due to the economy, unfortunately).
Hope this helps, and we'll look forward to meeting you when you come to town! -Chris