Home education

Home schooling is where you take on responsibility for teaching your child. It's an alternative to your child going to a school.

If you choose to home educate, you must get approval from the Northern Territory (NT) Department of Education. The department has a legal responsibility to make sure all students receive a quality education.

You must keep your child enrolled in a school until you have received approval to home educate from the Department of Education.

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To apply for home education, follow these steps:

Step 1: Fill in the registration for home education form for each child.

Step 2: Fill in the Home education learning plan DOCX (65.6 KB) and send to the Home education project officer.

The learning plan must take into account the age, capability, needs and interests of the student and must outline:

  • how you will substantially address the eight learning areas for the year
  • how educational progress and achievement will be measured
  • how student learning activities will be recorded
  • the area in your home suitable for educational purposes
  • access to resources and facilities to support student learning.

You must use the Australian Curriculum or an alternative curriculum approved by the Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). Unless you have been granted an exemption by the Department of Education.

Registrations apply for one calendar year and you must reapply each year.

For new families, registrations are open all year long. For continuing families, registrations should be submitted by the end of December each year.

When your registration has been received, all of the following will happen:

  • you will be notified in writing that your registration has been received
  • your registration will be assessed by the curriculum team and a learning plan assessment report completed
  • a student check will be done
  • a home visit will be arranged to discuss the proposed learning plan, recommendations that have been made in the curriculum assessment report and any concerns raised by the student check
  • you will be notified in writing as to the outcome of your registration.

If you are unsuccessful, you must make sure your child is enrolled in a school and you can appeal against the decision.

To appeal an unsuccessful registration or a cancellation of a home education approval, you must request an appeal in writing within 30 days of being notified.

Your child will receive no accreditation for home education. If you need certification for future employers, secondary, tertiary or vocational studies, your child must satisfactorily complete a program in a school offering NT Board of Studies approved courses of study.

If you have approval to home educate from the Department of Education, you are entitled to the back to school payment scheme and the sports voucher scheme.

You do not need formal teacher training or teaching experience to be home educators. But you must show you have the capacity to plan and provide for the educational needs of your child.

You can also employ a teacher to develop and deliver all or part of your teaching and learning plan. Your teacher must be registered with the Teacher Registration Board of the NT and have a Working with Children Check (Ochre Card) Clearance.

You can't home educate your child while travelling.

If you have planned to travel for less than one semester you should discuss how you can meet the educational needs of your child with your local school.

If you are travelling for one semester or more, you can apply to enrol your child in a distance education school.

Part-time school enrolment and part-time home education is only available to senior secondary students enrolled in subjects with the NT School of Distance Education.

To be enrolled as a part-time student you must meet the following criteria:

  • be studying in years 10, 11 or 12
  • have completed a minimum of two years approved home education directly before your application to enrol
  • have a teaching and learning program plan that details the distance education school subject/s to be studied and a current Home Education Approval Notice.

Contact home education by calling 08 8944 9214 or emailing homeeducation.doe@nt.gov.au.

Go to the Home Education Association website. Contact the NT Home School Network Facebook page.

For more information:

Last updated: 21 April 2020

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