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Download our Alumni Handbook

 

Lobbying is important

We need to make ourselves heard.

You should visit or write to your MLA and MLCs as well as the Minister for Education and the Shadow Minister.

Not sure what to say to your MP?
Whether you are visiting or writing, here’s a simple format for you:

1. Explain that you are a home educator contacting them about the Draft Education Regulations
2. State what your concerns are/how the proposed regulations are a problem.
3. Say what you would like them to do about it.

For 3, we recommend you ask:

  • ALP MLAs and MLCs: Request they work within the party to advocate for the regulations to be properly reconsidered following the public submissions.
  • OPPOSITION/CROSS-BENCH MLC: Request that they/their party move to disallow the regulations.
  • OPPOSITION/CROSS-BENCH MLA: Request that they advocate within the party for the regulations to be disallowed in the Legislative Assembly.

In letters you should include your return address both for a response and in order to establish that you are their constituent (Note: MPs are obliged to answer their own constituents, but not other members of the public). If you are emailing, make sure to mention that you are their constituent.

Reminder: the most effective contact is a visit, followed by a phone call, snail-mail letter, or, if an email is all you have time for, do that.

See the Advocacy Pack for more details.

Submissions

Submissions to DET on the regulations have now closed and will be made public on their website

 

You can also make a submission to the Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee (SARC). This is a multi-party committee of MPs who will examine the regulations in detail to check they comply with the Human Rights Charter, don’t extend beyond the Act etc. They can recommend dis-allowance of the Regulations, on technical but not policy issues.

SARC submission should be directed to:
The Hon Lizzie Blandthorn MP
The Chairperson
Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee
Parliament House, Spring Street
EAST MELBOURNE VIC 3002

OR email sarc@parliament.vic.gov.au

Your SARC submission can simply be a copy of your DET submission but it is a good idea to address to highlight all the gaping holes in the RIS if you can (e.g. Human Rights, lack of consultation, beyond the scope of the review). We’ll be putting out a list to help you. As we don’t know when the regulations will hit parliament, there is no official deadline at this stage but submissions can go in anytime now.

Points you may wish to mention

  • Address the problems you see in the regulations and RIS
  • The issue of parent suitability for homeschool and what criteria will be used to determine ‘appropriateness’
  • The concept of tailoring learning ‘as you go’ as opposed to putting together a plan for a whole year of instruction
  • Interpreting home education in the light of school-based learning (i.e. such as ‘learning plans’ and ‘recording learning outcomes’ which the schools do because they can’t keep track of who knows what!)
  • The issue of home-ed resources (the notion of parents ‘not having access to resources they need)
  • Contrasting parental instruction with teachers as ‘professionals’ etc

 

See the Advocacy Pack for more suggestions, but you may wish to mention these issues:

  • There is no evidence that home education is not working, if the department lack data, a research project would address that problem. Blindly implementing regulations won’t supply them with data, the RIS even admits this by proposing that a research project be done in future – why has it not been done to inform these regulations?
  • The regulations don’t set the criteria for home education registration, instead handing it to the VRQA, despite the fact all other educational spheres have their criteria set in the regulations. This lacks transparency as well as it being poor practice to hand unlimited power to an Authority.
  • The regulations require parents to write a plan and are then are reviewed against that plan. If the purpose of the legislation is to tell the department how well the home-educated child is doing, this regulation does not do that but only tells how well the parents followed the plan.

Projects

  • Alumni Videos – in a 30 -60 second video tell us who you are and what you are doing these days
  • Alumni Survey will be used to create a booklet
  • Homes 4 Home Ed 30/1/2017 a group of home educators delivered cardboard houses to the Minister demonstrating the variety and creativity in what kids learn in home education. If you have not yet done so you can still send your houses to him.
  • Home Ed Flash Mob 26/2/2017

Petitions

There are THREE petitions you can sign to help oppose the Victorian Draft Education Regulations
Please distribute them widely through your networks. If three petitions are too many, the Legislative Council one is the most important. You can use coloured paper to make the two paper petitions easy to keep track of if you wish (green for Legislative Council, pink for Legislative Assembly) but white is fine too.

  1. Legislative Council petition, which can ONLY be signed by VICTORIAN residents. This will be tabled in the Victorian Legislative Council (Upper House). Please note that this HAS to be a paper petition, so we need everyone to print it out and get it signed. This petition is really important. Please follow the instructions on the cover page so we don’t invalidate the petition.
  2. Legislative Assembly petition which can ONLY be signed by VICTORIAN residents. With the ALP in control of this house, we know they won’t act on this petition, but an MP has recommended we do it anyway on the basis that petitions are read out in the House at a time when it is well attended and it is just another avenue to keep the issue in the minds of the MPs.
  3. Change.org petition, which can be signed by ANYONE, ANYWHERE – they don’t have to be Victorian. It will be going to the Minister and Shadow Minister for Education, Hon James Merlino MP and Hon Nick Wakeling MP. At the bottom of the description page is a link to the paper petition, you can draw people’s attention to that too if they live in Victoria.

Digital banners etc

Home Education Research & Facts

University Entrance

  • Some American universities actively recruit home educated kids.
  • Anecdotal feedback from Australian universities is also good but we don’t have anything in writing from them.
  • Our alumni survey results are currently being collated and illustrate the home ed students move on to further education and careers

Misc

  • Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that “Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.”

Number of Victorian Home Educators and Kids 

Download as a .PDF

Use our Hashtags to spread relevant posts
#HandsOffHomeEd
#VicEdRegs

Key Slogans
Hands Off Home Education
Home Education is Different and its More
Schooling is not the only form of Education
Attendance does not equal Education

Members receive regular email updates on the campaign.

 

March 23, 2017

Consultation needed on regulations

Following the Liberal Nationals media release supporting home education and declaring they would move to disallow the regulations if tabled in their current format, HEN calls on the government to listen to home educators in revising the draft regulations for […]
March 23, 2017

Liberal National Media Release

  Media release today from the office of Nick Wakeling, Shadow Minister for Education: Liberal Nationals to protect right to home schooling Daniel Andrews is unreasonably targeting home school families, and failing to treat them with the respect they deserve. […]
March 17, 2017

Do You Really Want Quality Education?

By Bekah Carman The Victorian government is trying impose new regulations on home education in Victoria. These would create an ability to reject applications for home education as well as increase the power to cancel existing registrations.  Ostensibly, the reason […]
March 14, 2017

If it ain’t broke….

By Pavlina McMaster It seems that every day, the media publishes yet another story about the cracks in our school system. The fissures are many, and they’re ostensibly growing wider. They are so wide that children are falling through them, […]
March 1, 2017

HEN’s submission on the Draft Regs

We’ve seen some great submissions made on the draft regs and are doing a rough count of them via Survey Monkey The count will be updated daily here and is currently 382 (13/3 am) HEN’s submission appears below:
February 26, 2017

Mr Merlino’s standard response

Most who have taken the trouble to write to the Minister detailing their concerns, have received a standard letter by return – we now have hundreds of copies of this document with a different name at the top of each one:     […]
February 22, 2017

Home Ed Regs Forum

A forum was held on the proposed Home Education Regulations on Friday 17/2 at Nossal High School in Berwick, attended by the Shadow Minister Nick Wakeling, Brad Battin Gembrook MLA and DLP MLC, Rachel Carling Jenkins. A crowd of 240 attended. […]
February 21, 2017

You’re not worried about the regulations are you?

By Sue Wight You’re not worried about the proposed changes to home education because plans will only apply to new people and, with your track record, a review won’t be a problem. And as you see it ‘good’ home educators […]
February 19, 2017

Falling through the Cracks

By Kathleen Humble I am disturbed by the changes proposed by the Draft Education Regulations, as well as the silence of the Victorian Labor government and the Department of Education, who seem unwilling to even engage with the community or […]
February 18, 2017

Handbook of Home Educated Alumni

Home education began in Victoria with half a dozen parents in the 1970s With the first generation of home educated students now adults, we set out to find out where they are and what they are doing. This booklet lists […]
February 14, 2017

Choose Your Own Adventure

By Pavlina McMaster I couldn’t decide on a heading. Read this, then choose one: WOULD YOU WANT TO BE HOMESCHOOLING IN NSW? WELL, YOU MIGHT AS WELL BE. THE WITCH HUNT HAS BEGUN VRQA’S ULTIMATE GOAL Currently, in Victoria, there […]
February 14, 2017

Open letter to Minister James Merlino

Regarding the proposed changes to homeschooling in the Victoria Education and Training Reform Regulations 2017: Dear Minister, As I sit down to write, I find it hard to begin despite having pages of questions about the proposed changes and how […]
February 8, 2017

The Best Laid Plans

By Pavlina McMaster We are a very diverse community. No two households look the same, nor do they educate their children in the same way. This provides a richness to our community that at once brings us together and yet […]
February 7, 2017

Memes Wanted

Got a great meme that promotes home ed? Send it in to coordinator@home-ed.vic.edu.au
February 7, 2017

Process of the Regulations

Unlike legislation, regulations are not routinely debated in Parliament. Here is the process: February 28: Submissions close DET examines them and produces the final version of regulations. According the the Victorian Guideline for Regulation, “Consideration of public submissions – At least […]
February 5, 2017

Should a child be unsafe for 28 days?

By Bekah Carman One of the main reasons parents choose to home educate is as a last resort. They have their children in school and everything is fine – but then something happens, maybe it’s just one time or maybe […]
January 26, 2017

Are the regulations inevitable?

No, they aren’t. In order to become law, the regulations have to pass Parliament and that is not inevitable.  Regulations are not routinely debated and voted on like legislation, instead they are tabled in parliament and passed to the Scrutiny of […]
January 17, 2017

What changes are proposed?

This table sets out the requirements under the proposed regulations and how they differ from the current requirements:
January 1, 2017

Home ed Alumni

Where are they now? Australia’s first generation of home educated students are now adults and we’d like to check in with them and form an overall picture of what home ed kids do when they grow up. This information will […]
December 29, 2016

FAQ about Draft Regulations

Frequently Asked Questions What changes are proposed? New registrations to involve submitting an Individual Learning Plan for a full year, children to remain in school while awaiting VRQA approval of plans, all home educators to be reviewed on a ‘random […]