How to Register in Victoria

You need to complete two documents - a simple application form and a learning plan. Everyone needs to do this, regardless of how you intend to home educate, such as unschooling.

The Application
The application form is available in Word or PDF format.
Note if your child is aged 5, you are not obliged to register until their sixth birthday. You can of course, begin educating them before that.

Learning Plans
You must provide “regular and efficient instruction that, taken as a whole, substantially addresses the (8) learning areas”. This means providing resources and experiences to facilitate your child's learning. You do not need to replicate school at home. Don't stress, if your application is missing information, the VRQA will let you know what they need, not refuse your registration.

Learning plans are

  • Required with initial registrations
  • Required for each individual child
  • An overview to 31 Dec in the year of registration
  • Tailored to each child
  • A demonstration you’ve thought about your child’s education
  • A starting point for your home education
  • Learning plans are not

  • Required every year,
  • Set in stone
  • Required to follow any curriculum/grade level
  • Required to replicate school at home
  • Something you will be measured against
  • The Eight Key Learning Areas (KLAs)

    The learning areas are broad; you don't have to cover every aspect. You can specialise within them to suit the student's level or interest.
    Your program does not have to look like school.
    8 KLAs graphic

    It's time to brainstorm

    True learning occurs when the subject matter is relevant and engaging. The chances are that if your child is already doing something, or is keen to try something new, their activity will fit within one of the learning areas. Incorporate these and your child’s wish list into the plan. Write the 8 learning areas down the side of paper, and put each activity in the relevant section. You can list activities under more than one learning area. We recommend using resources you have already, or which are free or inexpensive when creating your plan, because it’s easy to spend money on something which turns out not to be a good fit for your family. The HEN resource directory and Pinterest account have lots of suggestions for resources and activities for every KLA.

    Learning plans can include

  • After school activities
  • Hobbies and interests
  • Sports
  • Therapies
  • Cooking, life skills
  • Improving mental health
  • Travel
  • Tertiary preparation
  • Learning plans can include

  • Home Ed events and groups
  • Community classes
  • Clubs
  • Excursions
  • Social activities
  • Work experience
  • Volunteering
  • Family, friends, community members with a skill to share
  • Some areas may now have lots of activities. If you have three or more things, you do not need to add more. That’s not to say you can’t do more, just that you don’t have to list more in the plan. When filling the gaps, aim for every activity to be a successful learning opportunity for your child. Rich activities often cover multiple areas, and integrating areas helps to make less favoured subjects more relevant.

    Variety is key, think about how your child learns best, and try to find options which will work with them. Avoid spending lots of money initially, it’s common to purchase books or resources and find that they are not the good fit you expected.

    You can include

  • Conversational learning
  • Hands on activities
  • Documentaries
  • Games
  • YouTube
  • You can include

  • TED Talks
  • Online courses and MOOCs
  • Books
  • Home Ed curriculum
  • Podcasts and audio books
  • Prepare your plan

    Certain information must be included in each learning plan, but how you present it is up to you. The templates provide a good guide of how much information is expected. If your brainstorming document consisted of 5-7 activities which each covered multiple KLAs, then the Activity Based template (Word or PDF) would be a good fit. If not the Subject Based template (Word or PDF) might be a better fit.

    You should choose one template only. Alternatively you can create your own, but most people find it is easier to choose from what is already available.

    Do

  • Use words that indicate frequency
  • Name resources for each learning area
  • Mention how the plan fits the child
  • Show you will facilitate
  • Give examples of what will be covered
  • You don't have to

  • Overtly teach
  • Have or include lesson plans
  • Have a timetable
  • Use eduspeak
  • Make your plan sound like school
  • The examples below give you an idea of how much to include. One is for an Activity-Based plan, the other for a Subject-Based plan. You can briefly mention all the information listed above in dot points, or sentences – whatever you prefer.

    Choose a template on how you can most easily present the information. The subject based plan can still be used to list activities (such as creating a family tree of the gods, or mummifying an apple). Aim to include 3-5 things your child will do, and four varied resources. At least one resource should be more specific (name of a book, website, game etc).

    subject mockup

    This template is suited to families who prefer to lay out their plan using one topic to cover multiple KLAs. For every KLA listed in the right hand column, there should be a corresponding activity in the Details column-- if you list a KLA you need to make sure it relates to something you've mentioned in the related activity.

    An activity can cover any number of KLAs (such as building and harvesting from a veggie patch), and some might only cover one KLA (for example learning German). Aim for 5-7 activities, and check that each KLA is mentioned at least once. If an activity covers just one KLA, then like in the subject plan above, aim to mention 3-5 things your child will do for that KLA. Follow the guidelines for resources given above.

    Mockup activity

    Learning Plan Questions

    As part of your plan, you need to answer the following questions:
    lp mockup
    There are samples available which cover a variety of ages & circumstances.

    Before you submit your application

    Checklist

  • Proofread
  • Attach evidence of parental responsibility
  • Sign - a real signature is required. It can be a scan, typing in a script font is not acceptable.
  • Your application can be submitted in pdf or jpg format.
  • HEN checks learning plans for our members. Email yours to support@home-ed.vic.edu.au together with your membership number.

    Submission and Approval

    Submission

    To submit your application to the VRQA, email it to home.schooling@education.vic.gov.au . You will receive a confirmation email. If you don't receive that, wait a day and phone the VRQA on 9637 2806 to check they received it.

    If there is information missing from your application, the VRQA will contact you. So long as you respond with the requested information, your application will not be refused.

    If you want to start home educating ASAP, put the date of application on the form.

    If you have a 5 year old, you can not be registered until the calendar year in which they turn 6. The latest you can register is their birthday (apply at least 28 days before that date).

    If you wish to register to start on a future date, that date can not be more than 6 calendar months from the date you submit the application.

    Approval

    Approval takes an average of 9 days, no more than 28 days. You will receive one registration email per child, which may not arrive on the same day.

    All registrations are for the calendar year. Towards the end of the year, you will receive one email per child to check if you are continuing to home educate next year. Just click the appropriate yes/no option. You will not be required to submit another learning plan, as registration extension is automatic. If you registered your child in their primary school years, you don't have to resubmit a plan for their secondary school years.

    Attendance while waiting

    School-aged children are obliged to attend school while waiting. If they are unsafe, don't send them, instead ask the principal to approve their absence, get a medical certificate. If these options aren't available see our advice.

    If your child has a disability, you may be eligible for a federal payment called Assistance For Isolated Children Scheme (AIC), and can apply as soon as your registration is granted. For more information on the AIC payment, please visit https://home-ed.vic.edu.au/assistance-for-isolated-children/

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