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Preparing an application

As a parent with a child registered for home education, am I required to provide my child with a high quality education and demonstrate evidence of this?


Do I have to teach all the lessons at my home?

No. Your child's education will be based at their usual place of residence but there are many learning opportunities in the wider community which you would incorporate in your child's program.

Who can teach my child?

A parent, or a registered teacher who is engaged or employed by the parent, can teach the home educated child. However, the person recognised by the HEU as the 'applicant' is legally responsible for ensuring that the child receives a high quality education, irrespective of whoever else may actually teach part of the child's program.

If I need more information as I devise a program for my child, should I contact the HEU?

Yes. An education advisor at HEU will be able to offer suggestions, directions and some resource information as you prepare the application. Quite a bit of this information is posted to you when you request an application form and is available in the Planning section.

What criteria are used to determine whether a registration is granted?

Under s.208 of the EGPA 2006 the parent is to provide a summary of the educational program or learning philosophy to be used for the home education of their child.

To enable the chief executive or their delegate to be reasonably satisfied that the parent can meet this condition, documentation is required about the proposed educational program or how the chosen learning philosophy is to be implemented to meet the child's education needs for the coming year.

1. This documentation should show evidence of a high-quality education that:

  1. has regard to the age, ability, aptitude and development of the child concerned
  2. takes account and promotes continuity of the learning experiences of the child concerned
  3. is responsive to the changing needs of the child concerned
  4. reflects and takes into account current understandings related to educational and other development of children
  5. is responsive to the child's need for social development
  6. is supported by sufficient and suitable resources
  7. is conducted in an environment conducive to learning.

2. The documentation can be supplied in any written format but should clearly address each of the above requirements and explain how the requirements will be met.

Registration is granted following the successful presentation of this documentation.

Can I supply only a philosophy statement and meet the procedural requirements of registration?

No. Information about how that philosophy is adapted to meet your child's learning needs is required.

Will the HEU provide school work for my child?

No. Home educating parents develop or adapt a program for their child. If you wish to have a curriculum provided for your child to complete at home, then you would need to explore the option of enrolling your child at a school of distance education.

Can I purchase a program from HEU?

No. We offer advice and generally refer you to materials that are available online free of charge. An education advisor may offer some support resources as they process your application.

Can I purchase privately produced or commercial curriculum materials for my child?

Yes. However, it is advised that a wide variety of resources should be used to provide for a child's educational needs and interests.

Before deciding to purchase commercial materials, it is recommended that you carefully consider your child's specific learning goals and their preferred learning style. Armed with this information, you should consider:


What does the product offer?

Learning goals

How many of the learning goals that you identified for your child are addressed by the curriculum in question?


Does it suit your child's style of learning?

Are the materials visually appealing and capable of holding interest day after day?


Does it offer a wide variety of learning activities?

Does the program move beyond simple knowledge development and encourage your child to use more challenging problem solving and investigation skills? To assess this, look for the use of a variety of key words such as compare, contrast, classify, develop, illustrate, plan, analyse, evaluate, design, create, synthesise, explain, explore, review, justify, recommend, prove and argue.


Who has created the product?


Is there a better product? Are you locked into paying for a product for many years? What if your child doesn't like it or goes back to school, do you still have to pay?


How will you supplement the weak areas of the product?

To avoid unnecessary expense and disappointment, it is recommended that you invest a considerable amount of time evaluating the worth of any resource that you are considering purchasing. Given the huge range of low cost or free educational materials, you may find the purchase of a 'ready-made' curriculum an unnecessary or limiting approach to home education.

If you base your child's home education around a 'ready-made' curriculum you will need to advise the HEU of the strengths that it will bring to your child's education, and explain how you will adapt the program to cater for your child's individual needs.

Can I use textbooks as a component of my child's program?

Yes. Many programs that are submitted to HEU have a textbook component as part of the whole program. Choosing how and if you will use textbooks is one of the decisions you will make as you develop a program for your child. However, as with all 'ready-made' curriculums, you should carefully consider their cost and the contribution they will potentially offer your child's education before purchasing them. To provide a variety of well-chosen learning opportunities, it is recommended that home education programs are not entirely based around textbooks, and instead, reflect the use of a variety of well chosen resources which together satisfy your child's learning needs. The regular inclusion of practical, hands-on tasks is essential to enhance learning and maintain your child's interest in their education.

What are some sample approaches to documenting learning programs?

The initial ideas for planning your child's home education program will come from your own observations of your child and the goals that you have for them. If available, past report cards and feedback from class teachers can be very helpful to you as well.

When it comes to documenting a learning program, you are encouraged to choose your own approach or style. We advise that the documents you present be especially useful to you, since it is from this plan that your year ahead will be guided. Time invested by you in the early stages of developing a detailed and meaningful plan, will not only help you to address the registration requirements, but just as importantly, provide you with direction for the learning year ahead.

Additional ideas about how you can document your child's learning program can evolve through discussions with an education advisor at the HEU and also from other families who home educate. Because all children and families have unique needs, it is more appropriate for HEU to offer only general information about planning. Some parents may feel restricted if we were to prescribe a set proforma, resulting in too much of "our voice" and insufficient freedom for you to tailor your teaching style to the individual needs of your child.

This being said, specific guidelines using a variety of planning styles can be located in the Planning section.

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This page was last reviewed on 19 Feb 2013

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