February 28, 2015


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School has begun and I don’t have my exemption yet

A new school year and a lot of people have exemption applications into the MoE and have not heard back yet. What should they do?

This is a problem at the moment especially in the Auckland office where they have a lot of exemption applications to process.

Keep your children at home. Even though any contact with the MoE will say that your children must be in school until you get your exemption – the MoE have to say that because that is the law. Schools have a number of excuses for pupils not to be in school when they should be and they have policy to cover that called “Justified Absence”.  So we have asked the MoE to make applying for an exemption to be able to come under “Justified Absence”. That should be happening probably later this year. In the meantime there are ways to keep our children out of school under “Justified Absence”: http://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/truancy-and-the-home-schoolerhome-educator/

The MoE used to be very  strict on this saying that our children must be in school until we got our exemptions BUT they are a lot more tolerant these days to the “Justified absence” ideas that are in the link above. Hopefully soon we will have no more hoops to jump through on that and it will be a matter of course. Then they will be able to write in the letters to us, when asking more questions, that “Justfiied Absence while getting an exemption” is their policy. It isn’t at the moment. So while people are waiting for their exemption to come through here are some ideas of what to do:

1. Wait.

2. Don’t send your child/ren to school

3. Ring the MoE and see what the status of your exemption application is.

4. Wait some more and keep your children out of the public during school hours (only until you get your exemption)

5. You are 99.9% sure of eventually getting your exemption so begin home educating your child as you have planned.

IMG_86036. Your child can be out of school for 20 consecutive days before the truancy officer is informed. Your child can go to school for one day then have another 20 consecutive days off school etc.

7. If the Truancy officer or a school contacts you, after the 20 days, tell them that you are waiting on your exemption and that you are heading to the Dr for a letter of explanation for why your child is out of school or

8. Enrol your child/ren at another school but don’t send them to it.

This will buy you some time until you get your exemption.

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Please share this information – thanks

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Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

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

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

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/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

Red Tape Cluster Buster Meetings and the Scoping Survey: http://hef.org.nz/2014/next-steps-deadline-8-december-2014/

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Hawkes Bay (Napier) office now processing exemption applications

An email from Lucy Ambrose of the National MoE Office:

220px-Hawke's_Bay_region_view

Our Hawkes Bay (Napier) office are now processing their areas home education exemptions.

There will be a few staff who will work in this area and the director is Marilyn Scott.

The contact details are:

Hawke’s Bay, Gisborne

Napier office

Address for couriers and reception Postal address
8A Lever Street
Ahuriri
Napier
PO Box 147
Napier 4140
DX Number: MX10022
Director of Education for Hawke’s Bay, Gisborne: Marilyn Scott
Email enquiries.napier@minedu.govt.nz
Phone (06) 833 6730 | Fax (06) 833 6731

Kind Regards,

Lucy Ambrose | Senior Advisor | Student Engagement

So all exemption applications from the Hawke’s Bay, Gisborne areas need to be sent to this office.

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Please share this information – thanks

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

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

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

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/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

 

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Home Educating other people’s children and the exemption

I wrote to the National office to get the offical word on who needs to put in the exemption – the parent or the one home educating the child. I got back the answer that I was expecting.

My email to Lucy at the National MoE Office:

Dear Lucy

I have just received this email.

“I have a question about schooling a friend’s child and who applies for the exemption. My friend, wants to take his child out of school and has asked me if I could school this child along with my 2 children the same age. My question is, who applies for the exemption? Do I write it as I am the one planning and teaching or does he do it even though he will not be involved very much in the day to day schooling?”

We have had this in the past – infact we home educated someone else’s child for year as well. But I would like to get the official word from you on this (I guess from your legal department). I would think that the parent should put in the exemption application with a statement from the person doing the home educating as well.

Looking forward to hearing from you so that we know how to advise others in the future.

Lucy’s reply to me:

Just as I thought.

Hi Barbara,You are correct – The law requires the application to come from the parent regardless of whether or not they will be doing the educating, but the application will need to satisfy the Ministry as to the “at least as regularly and as well” requirement so will also require some input from the person actually doing the home educating. It is the parents responsibility to ensure the children are getting an education at least as regularly and as well as a registered school as that is what they declare to us in the statutory declaration.

Kind Regards,

Lucy Ambrose | Senior Advisor | Student Engagement

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Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

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

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

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/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

 

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Wanganui MoE Office now processing exemptions

An email from Lucy Ambrose from the National Office of the MoE

Hi Barbara,
This is just a quick email to let you know that the Whanganui Office are now processing their own home education exemptions.

The details are:

Whanganui Office

Address for couriers and reception

Address for couriers and reception
93 Ingestre Street
Whanganui
Director of Education for Taranaki, Whanganui, Manawatu: Jann Marshall
Email enquiries.whanganui@minedu.govt.nz
Phone (06) 349 6300 | Fax (06) 349 6301

Postal address

Private Bag 3012
Whanganui 4540
DX Number: PX10045

I have not yet got a name of the person who will be doing the processing but will let you know when I do. I will be updating our website to reflect the changes as soon as possible.

Kind Regards,

Lucy Ambrose | Senior Advisor | Student Engagement

So anyone applying for an exemption in Taranaki, Wanganui and the Manawatu need to now send their exemption application to the Wanganui office.

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Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

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

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

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/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

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Feedback for the Scoping Survey due back 8 December 2014

My feedback for the Scoping Survey due back 8 December 2014

It was interesting to read your summary of the feedback you received in October. Thank you for doing such a thorough job in putting this together.

Some things left out of the “Next Steps”

1.  The length of time it takes to get an exemption.  In the past we often heard back in 4-6 days. Now on the exemption form it says it could take 4-6 weeks for an exemption to be processed. Suggestion for the future: Encourage the local MoE offices to process our exemption applications much more quickly than is happening in some regions. (If the MoE brings in “Justified Absence” while getting our exemptions then this will not be an issue any more.)

2. Staff training – The “Next Steps” talked a lot about the MoE relationships with home educators and that they don’t understand the different philosophies etc, but it didn’t address the need for the MoE staff to be thoroughly trained in the different philosophies of home education. I trust this was assumed. But home educators would like to see that the MoE staff are friendly and have a thorough understanding of the different philosophies whether they are temporary or long term staff. (We have just had an issue with a temporary staff member in Hamilton. The issue has been resolved without coming to the National Office. But in the meantime those who had applied for an exemption and been asked unreasonable questions like the proof of purchase of a certain curriculum were upset by the pedantic questions being asked of them.)

Some concerns

1. “The application form should ask for children’s strengths and weaknesses and what work will be done to address the weaknesses”

It is hard to believe that home educators asked for this. I don’t think that we should have to write about our children’s weakness – all children have weakness in some form or another. One of the reasons a lot of people pull their children out of school is because their child/ren’s weaknesses are not being addressed. I would think that we, as parents, would be far more interested in helping our children with their weaknesses. And what are our children’s weaknesses? Because of the personalities of our children we see this as different for each child. Some children naturally begin to read at 4 or 5 while others don’t find reading easy until 10 or 11. Many of us do not want to force our (usually) sons to read at 6 when they will pick up reading easily at 10 or 11. (If we are reading aloud to our children regularly our non-readers are not missing out because we are covering the books that they would be reading.)

2. The MoE holding group seminars or free workshops for home educators. I think it is much better that we, home educators, put on the seminars and workshops rather than the MoE doing this for home educators. We can ask the MoE to the seminars and workshops that we put on for home educators. This has happened well in the past.

3. ID cards – we need to communicate better about these. Home educators can get ID cards from some home education support groups and from NCHENZ.

Some new thoughts/ideas

Part time home education and part time school.  This has been missed by most of us during the Red Tape Cluster Buster meetings and in our Scoping Surveys. I would like to mention this now with the MoE. For many this is an option that their circumstances would work well for -  “one day school”, flexischooling, 50/50 home education or any percentage that works for a family.

This is of concern for:

1. Those parents who are divided about home education. If a mother would really like to home educate but the husband is not happy with it perhaps they could come to a compromise if there was something available.

2. But an even more urgent situation is where there has been a relationship split. Often in these cases one of the spouses (usually the father) make it difficult for the other spouse to home educate (sometimes they ask for an ERO review). Sometimes children will spend half a week with their father, who wants them in school, and half a week with their mother, who wants to home educate. So a compromise could be a good answer with some time at school and some time at home. I know there are issues with double dipping and insurance. But there must be a way around these issues.

Supervisory Allowance Home educators are divided over this issue. Some would like the Supervisory Allowance to increase, others are content for it to stay the same and others don’t think we should be getting it at all. This is one area where it would seem that it will be impossible to get home educators to agree.

We look forward to hearing from you in February 2015 to hear what improvements you are able to make to the forms and processes you use with home educators.
Barbara Smith

Home Education Foundation

www.hef.org.nz

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Links:
-Home Education Foundation letter which covers exemption form, beneficiaries, International home educators and Keystone.

MoE/ERO issues

Changes in the MoE

MoE discussions introduction to the Red Tape Cluster Buster meetings

Preparation for the MoE discussions with Red Tape Cluster Buster meetings andrelevant for the Problem Scoping Survey
- Discussions home educators had online at Clutter buster group or (for ease of reading as not everyone can get onto the Google docs) here…http://hef.org.nz/coming-events-archives-2012/red-tape-cluster-buster/ (Also a lot of very good information to aid you in filling out the Problem Scoping Survey)

Record of Progress and Achievement (an example of the new National MoE office staff understanding home educators)

Truancy and the Home Schooler/Home Educator (another success with the National Office in that Megan showed us alternatives)

Scoping Meeting 15 July 2014 – Getting to know you

2nd Meeting 28 July 2014 – Red Tape Cluster Buster Meeting

MoE scoping Home Educators – email

Feedback Form (Problem Scoping Survey) on MoE website

Email to the MoE about the Scoping Survey from a Home Educator

Problem Scoping Survey: ideas and deadline

MoE’s reply to Yumiko’s email about the Scoping Survey

MoE Problem Scoping Survey: please make it known and fill it out

The last of Craig Smith’s writings before he died 3 years ago

MoE Problem Scoping Survey

- Home Education Foundation’s Problem Scoping Survey

- Scoping Survey: Barbara Smith

- Problem Scoping Survey – Update

- Letter to MoE re Scoping Survey 7 October 2014

- Scoping Survey: Long term plans for our personal “survey/email”

- “Next Steps” from the MoE

- Feedback for the Scoping Survey due back 8 December 2014

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Updated 1 October 2014:  Three years on (Craig Smith’s Health) page 7 click here

*****

Needing help for your home schooling journey:

http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

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

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

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/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

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