The number of families choosing to home educate has risen rapidly in the past few years as parents seek greater flexibility.

It’s no secret that many parents are frustrated with the ‘one size fits all’ approach to education, but a growing number are choosing to take their children out of mainstream education and home educate them instead. The ABC reports that in Western Australia alone, the number of children being home schooled has risen 65% in the last five years, and in other states there has been a significant increase. So would you be willing to educate your children at home?

A Big Responsibility

The decision to take your children out of mainstream education isn’t an easy one, and many parents are deterred by the huge responsibility they face in taking on the schooling of their children. “I don’t have a problem with home schooling, but I think it is a tough job,” former CEO of The Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (and now Director General, Department of Education in Western Australia), Lisa Rodgers, said. “It’s highly unlikely that kids will have parents who are able to teach the specialist content across all the curriculum domains.” Those choosing to home school not only need to consider whether it is right for their children, but also whether it is feasible financially, as many parents could not afford to stay home and teach their kids themselves.

Putting Students First

Commenting on Mumsnet post, one homeschool advocate said schools are no longer putting students first. “The more time I spend in schools, the less of a good idea I think they are,” they said. “Too many times I see decisions being made because of money or management and not because of the best interest of the pupils. There is also something about schools that turns children off learning and I find the whole thing quite depressing.”

We definitely think that the school environment is not right for every child as it is currently, especially with the increasing focus on assessment and results, but for many parents, the alternative is personally and financially out of reach.

Have you ever considered home educating your children? Share your story in the comments.

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  • I don’t fully understand why a parent would want this. In most cases school is best for everyone. Parents mostly won’t have the skills needed to teach their kids. School is as much about social education as it is about knowledge etc. Goung to school jelps you to realise what ot is like living in a society.

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  • Absolutely not. I worked in the Education Department for 10 years as aide and saw all the extra little things that happen within the school environment. The schools have access to so much more than us as just parents could ever imagine. Secondly it takes an awful lot of discipline to keep everyone on task day in day out. I tried briefly when we moved interstate nearing the end of the school year. Every night l made up lessons for my 3 children , but it’s hard keeping that teacher’s hat on and not reverting to mum. No for your children and the very best future leave them at school.

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  • I would love to home school my kids because I have seen a lot of teachers favourite other kids or don’t have the time to help the needs if they have learning difficulties because the teachers don’t have the time. I have seen other teachers who do take the time to study extra that they weren’t taught in uni, to be able to motivate and support the kids. None of the teachers have picked up my child have learning difficulties. with so many up and downs with them, fighting to get support or to be seen that yes my child have learning difficulties. Instead im having to get my child privately tested outside of school and then give them the report. do the teachers read the report, no they don’t. now my son is in high school, report has been handed over, all teachers are aware that my son has learning difficulties but they do not know where a long the line my child is at, mild moderate or sever. After getting one detention, a meeting face to face, an apology from the teacher, I ended up brief the report shorter to the point and recommendations, that was sent out to all teachers.
    My husband doesn’t want my children to be home schooled, he was looking at social skills etc.
    It is tiring to fight against the school over being bullied and education wise. If I had a choice, I would home school my kids.

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  • Nope, my kids spend enough time at home, they need to be out in the world learning and socialising

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  • A big part of me would love to. However, I think my child needs the socialisation that school brings. I will still try and teach my daughter things in a fun, hands-on way at home. Different teachers will offer some learning that I may not. Why not have the best of both worlds.

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  • I want to but my husband thinks its a bad idea. I would love to do it not so that i cant work but spend time and make memories with my kids.

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  • No I don’t think i would as I believe there are so many social skills that can be learnt from a child’s time at school. I also think that schools are often up with the latest developments. Depending on the school, they also have access to more advanced technology than i could provide at home – ie, my daughter is learning about 3D printing which I certainly would not do at home. Everyone circumstance is different though and some might not have the choice, or the schools that are on offer may not be to the standard that the parent deems adequate.

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  • It depends on the circumstances as well as where you live. If your child has a severe allergy to a medication that you can come into contact with via skin to skin touch the Education Dept cannot guarantee that won’t happen and your child’s life is at risk I would home school and I know of one case where that is going to happen. Because it’s not a food allergy they won’t supply an epi-pen for them to buy from a pharmacy. Some schools don’t like administering medication when it is needed for serious sudden illness either.

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  • I did for a while. I ended up putting them in mainstream school eventually because my personal circumstances changed, but I have no regrets about doing things that way for a while because my kids flourished. People seem to think it will be isolating, but it doesn’t have to be if there are other homeschoolers in your area to meet up with- you can meet up at each others houses and in parks, and go on excursions to anywhere you want, as well as taking classes in different places (eg. music lessons, horseriding, pottery, cooking). It’s not something everyone can do, since lots of parents have to do paid work outside the home and don’t have enough flexibility, but it does seem to work really well for some families.

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  • Definitely not for me. I believe children should be around their peers and in a classroom environment. Plus I don’t believe I would have the patience to home school myself haha

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  • I would if I knew I would be able to reach out for support

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  • I would do it if my child was not coping in the traditional system

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  • I think spending that much extra time together might not be great – everyone needs a break from each other.

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  • Personally I wouldn’t unless there was an absolutely necessary reason too.


    • I would if travelling or in possibly remote circumstances.

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  • No! I love that my daughter can socialise and make friends and learn how to communicate and associate with class mates and teachers.

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