When I began homeschooling my first child I was married and had been since before he was born. His father and I went on to have 6 more children, all of which we have begun homeschooling with. I was married for 13 years before we separated and I went onto the DPB.
All of the exemptions that I applied for were granted by the Ministry of Education after I satisfied them in my application that my children would be schooled “as regularly and as well as” a child in school. I satisfied all their requirements and at no stage was I told that if I became a solo parent while homeschooling my children then those exemptions would become null and void because beneficiaries would not be allowed to homeschool their children even though those exemptions were granted under both Labour and National governments. And WINZ never told me I would not be allowed to home-educate my children because I was going onto the DPB.
Why is this Government allowed to force me to put my children into school when I did everything they wanted in the exemption to prove that my children would be educated as well as in a state school when all they are trying to do is get people off welfare and into paying taxes. Basically, the government is saying that because I’m a solo parent I’m unable to make the right decisions for my children, so then that right is to be taken away from me.
So they are actively encouraging a lower class of people in NZ by taking away our rights. I made the right decision by taking myself and my children out of the violent, abusive and emotionally damaging environment that my ex-husband was forcing on us only now to be punished by the government and bullied with their tactics of withdrawing the DPB from me if I don’t do as they want. Is that democracy? Also, it must surely be a gross breach of contract on behalf of the Government to firstly grant me the exemptions and then to say I can’t homeschool simply because my marriage failed. I have every right to educate my children the way I see fit just as they have every right to disagree and do it differently in their own lives.
Just because they are paying me money to provide shelter and food for me and my children shouldn’t give them the right to say it has to be done a certain way or else. Certainly take the benefit from people who use it to buy drugs or fuel criminal activities, if it can be proven but when they come out saying they are trying to protect the most vulnerable, in this case, children, they must surely be seen as hypocrites when the people that will most suffer from disallowing solo parents who homeschool to continue, is the children.