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A Change of Federal Government - What does this mean for Home Educators?

© Beverley Paine, 25 Nov 07

What always amazes me in recent years with Federal Elections is that the result is usually 'called' before the Western Australian polling booths are closed. When I was a teen it would be close on midnight before the election could be 'called', but now it's around 8pm. Nothing is conceded until later in the evening but I'd be frustrated as a WA voter knowing that my vote isn't going to make a difference as to which party wins government...

There is no doubt that there is a general lack of understanding and knowledge about how our parliamentary system works among all ages. As a home educator I'm proud of the interest and understanding my offspring show in elections and politics. We never 'studied' the subject in the way that schooled children would (should) have: what our children know derives from general discussions and from their parents taking a close interest during elections. I think it helps that I've lobbied for better recognition of home education, sat on legislative review panels, and written letters to politicians on various issues. Most of what they know about how parliament works is from watching the coverage on the television on election night. Robin and I are kept busy answering questions. It's always been like that, and last night was no exception.

I spent a couple of hours yesterday finally coming to grips with how the preferences are counted, thanks to a clear article by Anthony Green. The internet makes learning so much easier!

Home educators wondering about what an election win for the Labor Party means for home education can take heart that the promised rebates for school costs also extend to homeschool families. The following response to an inquiry about Labor Policy on Home Education by the Home Education Association of Australia:

Federal Labor supports parental choice, including the choice
to provide registered home schooling to children.

Under a Rudd Labor Government, families with students
undertaking registered home schooling will be eligible for
Federal Labor's 50 per cent Education Tax Refund to
purchase computers and assist with the cost of broadband
internet connections.

A Rudd Labor Government will establish a National Curriculum
Board to develop a National Curriculum in the key, core
areas of English, maths, science and history. This will be
done cooperatively with State and Territory Governments and
the Catholic and Independent school systems.

The National Curriculum will allow for sensible State, local
and regional variations, and those undertaking registered
home schooling will be expected to utilise this National
Curriculum.

For further information on the ALP's education policies,
please visit www.alp.org. au

Anthony Albanese MP
Federal Member for Grayndler

There are many points made that deserve closer attention and no doubt home educators will be writing to the new Minister for Education for clarification or to voice their opinions. The establishment of a National Curriculum and the requirement for home educators to 'utilise' it, will be of concern for many families who have established successful unschooling and learning naturally approaches to home education.

Get Up has kept a record of all the promises made by political parties running up to the election:

With Promise Watch you can ensure that every promise is a core promise and together we can hold the future Prime Minister - and every other MP and Senator - accountable. As soon as the new government is formed the clock will start ticking and together we'll make sure they deliver a progressive Australia.

With tools like this at our disposal it is going to be breeze to stay informed. Home educators across Australia need to consider what actions they can personally take to ensure that they can continue to home educate in the manner that suits their families best.

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Together with the support of my family, my aim is to help parents educate their children in stress-free, nurturing environments. In addition to building and maintaing this website, I continue to create and manage local and national home educating networks, help to organise conferences and camps, as well as write for, edit and produce newsletters, resource directories and magazines. I am an active support of national, state, regional and local home education groups.

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Welcome to the
World of Home Education
and Learning without School!

We began educating our three children in 1985, when our eldest was aged five years. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn as they grew and explored and discovered this amazing world since the moment they were born. I am a passionate advocate of allowing children to learn unhindered by unnecessary stress and competition, meeting developmental needs in ways that suit their individual learning styles and preferences. Ours was a homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning family! There are hundreds of articles on this site to help you build confidence as a home educating family. I hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was!

The information on this website is of
a general nature only and is not intended
as personal or professional advice.
This site merges and incorporates
'Homeschool Australia' and 'Unschool Australia'.

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Home education is a legal alternative
to school education in Australia.
State and Territory governments are responsible
for regulating home education and have different
requirements, however home educating families
are able to develop curriculum and learning programs
to suit the individual needs of their children.

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Maths Mentality helping parents understand primary school mathematics

 

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