July 30, 2014

Above Rubies Ladies Camp: 21-23 November 2014

21-23 November 2014 Above Rubies Ladies Camp

Keswick Christian Camp, Rotorua

Speakers include:

Heather Jones (NZ Director)

Val Stares (Australia Director)

and daughter Natalie Stripp

For more information and registration forms 

Contact: Jane Hennessy

email jane@hennessymorris.com

Phone 06 379 9066 or 021 100 8934


Teaching the Trivium: Introduction to the Trivium

by Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn

Christian Classical Model and Christian Classical Method


From the Smiths:


Updated 2 February 2013:  One year on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here


Needing help for your home schooling journey:



Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:




This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/


Record of Progress and Achievement

Exemption Form

“Remember, you will need to have a record of progress and achievement over time i.e weekly, termly, annually. This may also be needed when your child goes on to further education or training.”

This is enough to put anyone off home educating their children – well most people. Some people love to write up these sorts of reports on blogs and in diaries – most people don’t. So this needs to be clearer. It is enough to write up these reports for the ERO or for further education or training when required.  I mean that, it is OK to forget about the “ERO, further education or training” and get on with “teaching our children as regular and well as a registered school” until we need the “record of progress and achievement”. At that point we can sit down and collect all the information that we need which will be different for each “ERO, further education or training”.

At a recent meeting with Jim Greening (Group Manager, Schools and Student Support), Sonja and Lucy Ambrose (Senior Advisor, Learner Engagement) we talked about this. I asked them if the advice I give out to people is correct. This is what I like to tell people.

Forget about the ERO. Just get on with “teaching your child/ren as regular and well as a registered school”.

UNTIL you get the letter from the ERO informing you of a review. There are only 35 reviews budgetted for each year and the ERO has been doing far less than this over the last few years (14 last year).

Then DON’T start suddenly doing a whole lot of bookwork with your child/ren, carry on as you have been doing. This is the time for you, as the parent, to get prepared for the review. You will have roughly two weeks to prepare. Here is something I wrote up about this a few years ago which might be helpful:  http://hef.org.nz/2006/preparing-for-an-ero-review-2/. During this two week period there is plenty of time to write notes, collect photos, videos, samples of work etc, representing a “record of progress and achievement over time”.

They all nodded and said that this was a good and acceptable way to “keep a record of progress and achievement over time“.

Other helpful info on ERO reviews: 

NO MORE Home Schooling ERO REVIEWS!!!

What should we be doing now that there are no longer ERO reviews

Youtube short clip: Book: Preparing for an ERO Review

Here are a couple of booklets written by NZ authors to help you through your ERO Review


Are you moving to New Zealand?

Only some children moving to New Zealand need exemptions to be home educated. Check out this link from the MoE:

My family has just arrived in the country and we are applying for residency. We would like to homeschool in New Zealand, but we are unsure if we need to apply for an exemption for our children.

In this situation you will first need to determine if your children have ‘domestic student status’.  If they do and they are between the ages of 6 and 16 years of age, then they must attend a registered school unless they have an exemption.

If your children do not have domestic student status then they will qualify as foreign students, and you do not have to apply to homeschool them as foreign students in New Zealand are not required to enrol or attend a school.

To determine if your child or children are foreign or domestic students, please read the following:

What’s the difference between a foreign and domestic student?

Under the Education Act 1989 a foreign student is anyone who does not fall into the category of domestic student.

A domestic student is defined as:

At any time, means a person who is then -

a New Zealand citizen; or the holder of a residence class visa granted under the Immigration Act 2009 who satisfies the criteria (if any) prescribed by regulations made under subsection (4); or

a person of a class or description of persons required by the Minister, by notice in the Gazette, to be treated as if they are not foreign students.

These categories are explained in Ministry of Education Circular Eligibilty to enrol in New Zealand schools. The link to this circular is:  www.minedu.govt.nz/circular201201

This information is found in Appendix E of the exemption form online: http://www.minedu.govt.nz/Parents/AllAges/EducationInNZ/Homeschooling.aspx


Media Release –Will the Greens’ ECE Policy Really Benefit Children?

Press Release230714GreensECEpolicy

July 23, 2014

Palmerston North, NZ – The Green Party yesterday announced as a key part of its election platform that it would be supporting families by seeking to extend the 20 hours’ free early childhood education (ECE) subsidy to 2-year-old children.

But Barbara Smith, National Director of the Home Education Foundation of New Zealand, is concerned that this policy could normalise what she believes is a misguided emphasis on ECE above parental care and interaction.

According to the Green Party press release, “Good-quality ECE helps children reach their full potential, both in education and in leading healthy and productive lives.”

“Where is their research?” asks Mrs Smith. “Quality education for most preschoolers begins in the home.”

The research, says Mrs Smith, demonstrates that ECE only tends to benefit vulnerable children who would otherwise be neglected at home.

According to Dr Jane Silloway Smith, of the Maxim Institute, “ECE has been shown to benefit children from disadvantaged backgrounds because these children often lack what their more advantaged peers have: a nurturing home environment. Educational researchers regularly report that a nurturing home environment will have a more profound impact on a child’s educational achievement than preschool programmes – a reason often stated for why more advantaged children are not often found to gain much, if anything, educationally from ECE.”

In fact, much of the research shows that ECE disadvantages most children. In one of the most rigorous studies available, the US National Institute of Child Health and Human Development found a strong link between long hours of non-maternal care and behavioural problems such as aggression, demanding behaviour, cruelty, fighting, and so on, even in children coming from usually privileged backgrounds.

In a 2013 Canadian study, researchers from the University of Montreal and the Sainte-Justine Hospital Research Centre said that children who attend daycare were more likely to become obese between the ages of 4 and 10. More seriously, Canadian behavioural psychologist Dr Gordon Neufeld believes that early preschool is causing a socialisation crisis. “When you put children together prematurely before they can hold on to themselves, then they become like [the others] and it crushes the individuality rather than hones it.”

Preschool is also linked to low academic achievement. A 2011 study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology found that early childhood education “comes at a cost: children are less likely to discover novel information” and inhibits “exploration and discovery”. Sociologist J Conrad Schwartz found in 1986 that group care was associated with lower intelligence, poorer verbal skills and shorter attention spans.

“The fact is that when children have a lot of one-on-one interaction with adults at home, they do better than at preschool interacting with peers,” says Mrs Smith. “For children with engaged parents who provide learning in the home, preschool is only a drawback.

“Instead of hurting children by pressuring them into ECE, let’s support families by helping parents to do what they do best.”

More research on early childhood education can be found at www.hef.org.nz.

About the Home Education Foundation

The Home Education Foundation has been informing parents for 28 years about the fantastic opportunity to de-institutionalise our sons and daughters and to embrace the spiritual, intellectual and academic freedom that is ours for the taking. Through conferences, journals, newsletters and all kinds of personal communications, we explain the vision of handcrafting each child into a unique individual, complete with virtuous character, a hunger for service to others, academic acumen and a strong work ethic. For more information, please visit www.hef.org.nz.

Media Outlets:

NZ Yahoo News: Will the Greens’ ECE policy really benefit children?

Voxy: Will the Greens’ ECE policy really benefit children?

Scoop: Will the Greens’ ECE Policy Really Benefit Children?

NZ Herald:  Kindies ahead of Greens on free places for 2-Y-Os

More Links concerning ECE:

Media Release 1 –Will the Greens’ ECE Policy Really Benefit Children?

Greens announce 20 hours free ECE for two year olds

Baby charter schools raise more questions

School starting age: the evidence

Long days at nursery or with childminders ‘raising a generation of school tearaways’

New Zealand, Sweden and the Johanssons

About Early Child Care in Sweden

ECE linked to obesity in kids: study

ECE (Preschool) is no good for 4, 5 and possibly 6 year olds expert says

Human Rights in New Zealand Today: The right to education

Raymond S. Moore on Early Childhood Centres

Should preschool be compulsory?

What is best for children?

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

ECE vs Home: stress in child

Assessing the evidence on early childhood education/childcare. Dr Sarah-Eve Farquhar