Home Educating, Youth Allowance & Centrelink

I’m enjoying year 11 with my son and year 8 with my daughter! Sometimes I wonder who’s learning more me or them 🙂 Doug is working his way through his yr11 maths book, learning system and network admin by helping me and reading copious books, notes, webpages etc. He’s also helping Jessica with her school work especially maths, science and geography. They’re both helping with the computer classes I/we teach, especially Jessica who has a real flair for teaching.

Much is said about what curriculum to use and what method of home ed to use. I’m not anti curriculum or anti methods, I just don’t get into all that. We use what works for us. It’s a combination of methods and curriculums. I don’t have a lot of money for curriculum so I don’t buy a lot of it. This year we were given a lot of text books by a friend who is using a different home ed method/model so that’s been a big bonus! We just picked out what we wanted to use. I love books. I’m always reading and the kids have inherited that too. We have heaps of books and always go to the library for more. Whenever we’re into a new project it’s off to the library for more books!

Being single, working and home educating is a challenge but I love it and the kids love it too. Thankfully I have the sort of work that the kids can come along to and participate in. This is something I’ve stuck to pretty much all their lives. If I’m doing something then it has to be something the kids can come to.

We’ve caused a bit of a ruckus at our local Centrelink(social security) office by changing Doug’s Youth Allowance details from attending a school to home education. They had no idea how to deal with it.

In South Australia home educated students need to be registered with a school and the Government grants them exemption from attending that school for the purpose of home education. Because Doug is 16 he is over the legal school leaving age and doesn’t have to attend school. He doesn’t have to be registered with a school (schools won’t register him) or with the Government. The poor, bewildered Centrelink worker kept asking me if Doug was registered somewhere. I kept explaining to him that Doug doesn’t have to be registered. The Centrelink worker, a nice guy, once he’d done his homework realised that there is a problem with Centrelink policy and SA education law and has raised this issue with their policy department. Meanwhile we’re waiting to find out what the outcome will be. Thankfully I read up on this issue before approaching Centrelink. I’ll keep posting about this.

One Comment

  1. Rosie

    It’s amazing isn’t it that these policy problems relating to compulsory school ages, home education and Centrelink regulations are yet to be addressed in any systemic way by Centrelink?

    I and other homeschoolers I know have been lobbying for some time to fix this issue with Centrelink and yet problems persist. I personally have found little to no support from the organisations who normally advocate for youth or welfare recipents. They don’t understand the issues and their responses appear to indicate to me that they don’t care either. So much for advocacy. I guess homeschoolers get a lot of practise at doing things themselves.

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