Compulsory Attendance Age
6-15 years old
Number of Homeschoolers
There are approximately 30,000 homeschooling families in Australia, including schools of distance education. The Australian Christian College (Australia’s largest Christian school of distance education) has over 1,700 families, with 4,000 students ranging from preschool to year 12 in its home education programs.
In Australia there are six states and two territories, each with its own Education Act that incorporates regulations for homeschooling. Thus, homeschooling is legal in all Australian states and territories. However, homeschoolers are required by law to register with their state or territorial education authority. Each state and territory has different requirements before granting homeschooling registration.
Each state or territory government has a homeschool registration authority that seeks to register homeschooled (otherwise known as home educated in some states) children and to monitor their academic work. State Education Department officials are responsible for inspecting and approving home study programs. A Home Tuition Appeals Board makes recommendations to the Minister if parents or guardians refuse to accept the assessment by the District Director (Schools).
In addition to homeschooling, the states of Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia have registered non-government schools of distance education.
In Western Australia,
“exemption from the compulsory attendance provision of the Education Act 1928 at either a government or registered non-government school may be granted in cases where parents are able to provide an appropriate education program. Responsibility for inspecting and approving home tuition programs rests with the Education Department's District Directors.”
Families who participate in distance education operate at home in the same way as homeschoolers, but they must have the support of teachers and educational resources associated with the school of distance education. Students who are enrolled in a school distance education are not required to register with state government authorities as the school distance education is subject to government scrutiny, not the family.
Australian Christian Home Schooling
Home Education Association
Accelerate Christian Home School
Homeschooling in Western Australia continues to grow, with parents opting out of traditional schools for a host of reasons.
"I see a bond in my children that wasn't there before," this Australian mother told ABC News after switching to homeschooling. "And it's changed me so much as well."
The Brisbane Times interviews homeschooling families and explores why home education has grown in the region.