Home Schooling in New Zealand


Home schooling is basically just that, educating children in their home rather than in a school environment. Home schooling in New Zealand is also referred to as Home Education.

Why do people choose to Homeschool?

People who educate their children at home tend to fall into two categories;

Those who actively choose home schooling as their preferred method of education for their children.

Some parents actively choose home schooling, as they believe it gives their children a better / different style of education. Other parents may have been involved in their children’s preschool education and find they have the confidence to carry on with educating their children themselves.  Some people who choose to homeschool may do so because they have a range of alternative values that they believe would be better supported through home education.

Those who find school doesn’t suit their child and want an alternative. These parents may have children:

  • with health issues or special needs
  • who have been bullied or very unhappy at school
  • with different learning styles
  • who have been expelled or suspended from school
  • with special talents or abilities that need extending
  • who need to put extra time into their chosen field such as sport, music, academic pursuits.

What are the benefits / drawbacks to home schooling?

Benefits of home schooling include:

  • close, warm family relationships
  • fewer teenage problems
  • flexibility which means a more spontaneous and exciting education for your child
  • more opportunities to extend their learning and have them participate in the world around them.

Children learn best when they are interested in a subject and the flexibility of home education allows this to happen regularly.

Some of the drawbacks to home schooling may be:

  • reduced income as one parent is at home educating rather than earning an income
  • giving up at least part of your house to children’s projects
  • the need to make a greater effort to involve your children in activities with their peers outside of the home for socialisation reasons (read more about this aspect of home schooling under the heading “What about socialisation if I home school?”)
  • a lack of exposure to an assortment of ideas and opinions that the student is more likely to receive if he or she is schooled face-to-face in a school environment and
  • the fact that you are ultimately responsible for the education and learning of your child/children.  This task may be daunting for some parents who choose to home school.

To read further discussion on the benefits and drawbacks of home schooling visit  www.wikianswers.com.

One of the costs you will have to consider when you make the decision to homeschool is the loss of income a parent will have to endure. The commitment to homeschool means one of you will need to be at home to educate and supervise your child/children. It doesn’t have to be the case that this is all you do. Many parents have managed to work or study part-time and continue to homeschool.What will home schooling cost me?

This article gives some more useful advice on things to consider when deciding to homeschool.


The Ministry of Education provides a small amount of assistance in the form of an annual ‘supervisory allowance’ of $743 for the first child, $632 for the second, $521 for the third, and $372 for each one after that. This is paid retrospectively, in two installments each year, January and July.

Do I need permission to homeschool my child/children?

Yes. In New Zealand children between 6 – 16 years of age must attend a registered school, or have an exemption from school attendance. This exemption is granted by your local office of the Ministry of Education.

You’ll need to convince the Ministry officer that you are able to educate your child “as regularly and as well” as a registered school. However you are not obliged to follow the national curriculum or create a mini-school at home. This is why the term “home education” is preferred to “home schooling”.

One of the biggest advantages to home schooling is the flexibility. You can tailor learning programs to suit you, your child and your lifestyle. This also means everyone ends up doing things a little differently.

The Ministry of Education recognises this and, in considering your application, will want to know:

  • that you’ve considered your child’s needs and abilities; and
  • that you’ve done some research, set goals and have a reasonable idea of what you are doing.

Contact your local Ministry of Education office for an exemption application form.

How do I get started and where do I find resources?

There are many ways you can go about homeschooling which range from purchasing a curriculum to self-directed learning. Pick a method that suits your child’s learning style and your lifestyle.

Resources to help you can be found:

  • on the internet. Resources online are unlimited and often cost nothing
  • through small businesses run by home educators. They import educational resources and will be happy to recommend materials. Click here for links to resource suppliers on the internet
  • at educational bookstores that will be happy to help you with requests, or try online bookstores
  • the Resource department of the MoE. They’ll make the New Zealand curriculum available after you’ve gained your exemption.

Are there any government checks on home educated children?

Yes. The Ministry of Education will advise the Education Review Office that you are homeschooling. ERO will undertake occasional reviews for the purpose of ensuring the student is being given an education appropriate to their needs and that he/she is not being disadvantaged by being educated at home.

You’ll be required to renew your intention to homeschool every six months. The Ministry of Education will send you a form to do this. This form also allows you to apply for the small supervisory allowance you are entitled to as a home educator.

How do homeschooled students get qualifications?

There are several ways in which homeschooled students can attain qualifications.

  • One way is to sit the Cambridge exams.
  • Another option is to enrol in The Correspondence School.
  • Alternatively a student can return to school at any time. Some homeschooled students return in Year 11 or 12 (see Year Structure in the Glossary) in order to gain NCEA credits.

What about socialisation if I homeschool?

Firstly, what is socialisation?

Socialisation is all about the way a person learns to behave in their community and society in general. For the most part, socialisation is thought to happen in the first ten years of life but it is an ongoing, lifelong process.

There is no need for children to feel isolated if they are homeschooled. There are a number of support and activities groups throughout the country designed to ensure homeschooled students don’t miss out on contact with their peers. This allows them the chance to ‘mingle’ with others in the same situation as them.

And don’t forget about community sports clubs and other activities. Homeschooled students often take part in all the same activities that a student who attends school does.

It is important that parents who choose to home school their child make a concerted effort to involve their children with their peers.  Missing out on this interaction during school hours may mean their social development is affected, so it becomes all the more important that every effort is made to have them socialise with others outside of the home.  This will help home schooled children learn to cooperate, interact and communicate with varying personalities and people.

How do I get in touch with support groups?

There are a number of local home-ed support groups around the country. They often get together for support meetings, trips or tuition.

There are three regional networking groups:

  • Auckland Home Educators,
  • Wellington Homeschool Association, and
  • Christchurch Home Educators.

whose volunteer members will be happy to give you advice and information.

There are two national groups promoting homeschooling awareness throughout New Zealand:

  • The National Council of Home Educators, and
  • The Home Education Foundation.

In addition to these contact points there is an extensive homeschooling information website, www.home.school.nz, and a national network of Yahoo groups that allow home educators to contact each other.  Please see the contacts below.

Useful Websites for Home schooling








Kylie Valentine

Kylie Valentine is a qualified secondary school teacher, trained journalist, and the mum of two fabulous children.

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  • Terrikubala

    I,m wanting to home school my daughter who is currently at school ,she is 6 in October. She is epileptic and not really understood at her school.The teacher seems to complain constantly about her abilities etc. I would like to home school her . I would like to work with how my daughter learns. I see a lot of fees seem involved. Could I not start with resources I already have or can purchase at reasonable cost. Do I have to join a home schooling group, their fees seem high.

    • Hi Terrikubala,

      There’s no reason why you need to buy special resources… you certainly can just start with what you have and your local public library is a great resource. The only thing that you MUST do is apply for an exemption (see the information above). You don’t have to join a homeschool group but you might find them a useful resource and some don’t have fees- what area are you in? 



  • DJ

    I thought it was a legal requirement for all children to write exams. Am I wrong? If home schoolers don’t write exams, how do they get accepted at university?

    • Hi DJ,

      There is no requirement for students to sit exams but, as you note, it can be a stumbling block to students being admitted to university. Some universities approach this on a case-by-case basis; alternatively, students can wait until they are 20 and then go. 



      • Carlene

        hi I have a 14 yrs old daughter truth be told she truly hates school she went to school but didn’t attend classes she has told me she got tired of being bullied so she started defending herself but the worst thing is she was caught stealing at school so I decided its best she doesn’t go to school would it be wise to home school her or send her to another school?

        • Hi Carlene, Sounds like you and your daughter have both been having a tough time. Perhaps the best starting place is talking to your daughter about what to do. She may have ideas about this and it will be important that she’s involved in the decision. Good luck!

    • Carly

      Just an additional note – your children can still sit the exams needed for university entrance whilst home-schooling.

  • lee

    i am wanting to start homeschooling for my 13 year old daughter. she has found schooling ever since begining of intermediate and has had many difficulties from then till now can i home school her being 13 years old?

    • Hi Lee,

      Yes- you can start home schooling her now. You will need to sort out the specifics of this and I suspect that you will need to gain an exemption before you withdraw her from school. Try contacting one of the home schooling associations http://www.home.school.nz/ for more information about what you actually need to do.

  • Hi Kiwi Cathy,

    In order to home school in New Zealand, you need to apply for an exemption. In order to do this, you need to contact your local Ministry of Education Office – http://www.minedu.govt.nz/AboutThisSite/ContactUs.aspx#RegionalOffices for an exemption form. Hope this helps and good luck for your move!


  • KD

    Hi There,
    Can you employ a private teacher to home school your child so you can still remain at work? and if so, where would I find someone qualified to do this?


    • Hi KD,

      I’m not certainly of the logistics of this but generally speaking, yes you could. In order to home school, you need to seek an exemption from your local MOE office but, alternatively, you could look to contact Te Kura – The Correspondence School (www.tekura.school.nz) and enrol your child with them. In order to find someone to do the teaching, there are a number of avenues. If you are looking for a qualified teacher, you might consider advertising in the Education Gazette – http://www.edgazette.govt.nz – or try advertising in your local paper. There are bound to be people around who are looking for work. You will need to be aware that hiring a qualified teacher may be quite expensive.

      For further information, you could try contacting Te Kura or one of the homeschooling associations listed above. They will be able to give you more specific information.

      Good luck,


      • Kiwisongbird

        Hi, I’m a qualified primary school teacher and home educated my three sons. I used Te Kura for a while, then whatever I could beg, steal or borrow in the way of curriculum. We lived overseas as volunteer workers so I was very creative in my methods! I would love to teach someone else’s children now as I miss the home/education life. I live in Wellington, New Zealand. kiwisongbird@gmail.com

        • kiwisongbird

          Oh, and I wouldn’t expect the same salary as a teacher with a large class and huge administrative expectations. 🙂

  • Grant

    Just a note that the HS allowance is paid in June & December each year.

  • S Amos

    Hi Kylie,
    Please provide somemore information around home schooling a Special Needs Foster young adult, who is high ORS funded by my local High School. There are so many concerns around his being at school as he suffered sexual abuse growing up in his own home. I had sent him to the local High School last year in the Special Needs unit, however I am concerned he has not really learnt as much as he could. Being his foster parent makes me feel the school are failing him, in particular are there any concerns around home schooling Special Needs kids and does the government expect me to have a teaching qualification? thanks for your help

  • Margs

    Hi Kylie, my 10 year old daughter has mild Intellectually disability, autistic traits and anxiety and has been mainstreamed at state school since 5. As she has gotten older she has become more and more anxious about attending school (she has a teacher aide for 2 hours per day – we fund this as no Orrs). She has also recently been sick and in hospital, i feel her anxiety has increased even more and that the ‘gap’ between her and her peers is widening – she is about 2-3 years ‘behind’. I am considering home-schooling her, are there homeschooling groups for kids with special/high learning needs in Auckland do you know? Any thoughts?

    • Hi Margs,

      Our homeschooling expert passed on the following comments:

      I am not sure if there are homeschooling groups especially for children with “special learning needs”, because every child is different and their needs are all different. Groups tend to be support groups where parents and children come together and meet once or twice a week in a park or something, so the kids can play together and they do not need to share either vision or activities together. There is usually no comptition and no pressure and the children tend to be of all ages, so there should be no problem mixing in such an environment.

      I think that increased anxiety is a strong indicator to take the child out of school asap and it sounds like the mother has the ability to home educate her, which is encouraging. She may need to find somebody who can help her plan a curriculum that suits the child’s intellectual needs and capabilities – mostly because the minstry insists on parents having a learning plan in case they come to inspect, but if it was me, I would just allow this child to guide the process, so no extra pressure is put on her.

      I would advise her to contact Home Education Network in Auckland for lists of names of groups and where they meet and then contact them, or just google “homeschool support groups Auckland”.

      I hope this helps!


  • chriza03

    Hi my name is Chris, I have an 8 year old boy who is constantly
    not doing well at school, he has APD an auditory processing disorder
    and on top of that he hates school because he’s so far behind
    and does not understand the work he’s doing at school. I want to home school
    him but am looking for a private tutor. Are there any teachers out there
    who are able to help? I live in the Auckland area…my email is chrissica@me.com
    I really want to see my little boy smile:) again and not be stressed about

    • Kristen

      Hi, I’m a home school educator! Currently looking for a job after December as the family I work for is moving to England!

  • melissa

    Hi there;

    I am an 18 year old student currently residing in South Africa. I have completed my Grade 11 as we call it here, but have not enrolled in our Grade 12 (or matric). My father is in Torbay at present and my mother and I are looking forward to joining him there in a month or two’s time. We are aiming for permanent residency under the Skilled Migrant Category.

    However, I have some difficulty understanding NZ’s schooling system. Everyone tells you something different. I want to study Architecture and Interior Design at university level after completing school.

    I would like to know if there is something like a home schooling system where I can start to complete my Year 13 while still in SA and continue on that program when we are in NZ and will it give me NCEA credits or how should I go about this?

    Please I need advise… Thanks a lot for helping! If you need more info in order to help, please e-mail me at melissa_beukes@hotmail.com

  • Hello there,
    Im thinking about home schooling my 12 yr old daughter as she has always had issues with friends at school and now at middle school things are just getting worse. I can tell she has a lot of anxiety and I just want to help her with it all. I am thinking that the corrospondence school would be a good way of doing things but do I need a MOE exemption for this ? I would really love some advise on this please.
    Thanks in advance

  • Nora

    Hi…I find this website very informative. I have some questions…we are going abroad for 1 year and thinking of homeschooling out children. What necessary steps do we need to take before leaving NZ? Do we have to inform The Ministry of Education on this? Who do we approach for the study materials when we are abroad?

    • Hi Nora,

      It’s great to hear that you find the site useful! The best organisation to talk to about study materials is Te Kura – The Correspondence School – http://www.tekura.school.nz In regards to notifying the MOE, I don’t think that there’s a requirement for this but you could check with your local MOE office-http://www.minedu.govt.nz/AboutThisSite/ContactUs.aspx

      Hope this helps and that you enjoy your time away!


  • kween apiata

    Hi there my 15 year old wants to do home schooling as she was bullied at her previous school and does not want to go through this again at a new school so is she able to be home schooled and how do i go about this? Thanks in advance

    • Hi Kween Apiata,

      If your child is under 16, you will need to gain an exemption from the Ministry of Education. In order to do this, you need to contact your local MOE office. Good luck with this.


  • Poppy

    Your page is very informative. I am a fully registered primary school teacher with experience in teaching years 0 to 7. I also have experience in special needs, as a former RTLB (Resource Teacher of Learning and Behaviour). At present, I am on a long term relieving contract. However, in 2014, I would be interested in teaching homeschool families. I live in Auckland.

  • susan

    I have a 14 yr old son that is not enjoying school at all being bullied it is so sad to see him trying to deal with it we are interested in looking into home schooling but don’t really understand what we have to do when they say we have to show them how he will learn etc…can any one help?….cheers

    • Hi Susan,

      Sorry to hear that – tough for you all. Where abouts in New Zealand are you?


      • susan

        westcoast sth island

        • Hi Susan,

          The best thing to do is get in touch with a local home schooling group – they will be able to help you with your exemption forms etc. This Facebook group is a good place to start: https://www.facebook.com/groups/HomeEducationNZ/

          Good luck!


          • susan

            thanx will have a look

          • HEMama

            Hey Susan, we’re homeschoolers on the west coast 🙂 Hokitika has a great homeschooling group though its more difficult to find homeschoolers in Grey and Westport areas since they don’t have groups but if you’d like to get in touch I’m happy to put you in contact with everyone I know, and also show you an exemption example if it would help! 0275382859

          • susan

            thanx we are up above westport rural I will see how things go I have a chat with a councillor tomorrow my son has been chatting with her…he wants to be homeschooled I’m unsure if I’m up to it seems a lot of hassle for a couple more yrs of school….don’t know what to do

  • Netty

    Hi, thanks for this fantastic website! I’m researching home educating for my 3 daughters and wish to begin as soon as I am able to do so. I’m about to begin the process of filling out the application for an exemption but now that I’m looking at their personalised educational goals etc, I’m feeling a bit stuck at the moment in regards to WHAT curriculum I should follow or which one would be best? I am seriously considering following through with the ACE curriculum but my budget at this time is not suitable for this and I have researched Te Kura but would like a different option. I would really like to have some sort of curriculum as a guide, preferably with Christian values as well. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

    • Hi Netty,

      So pleased to hear that you are finding our site helpful! Thanks 🙂

      We consulted a home schooling parent who give the following feedback:

      The ACE one is popular but very question/answer based. We use Math Smart and Science Smart Curriculums (they are based on Singapore’s Maths and science which continually rate highest academically worldwide). There is also Saxon maths which is very popular and Apologia science which is a Christian-based science curriculum (though maybe just for high school?) I don’t really think you need one for reading/writing but each to their own. She could look at http://www.engagingminds.co.nz/ for some more ideas but in all seriousness a lot of people try things, change their minds, do a lot of research, ask a lot about what is working for other people etc etc. She doesn’t need to worry too much with the exemption because it is only supposed to cover the next year and they expect people to change anyway.

      There will be local groups around with people who could help her with her exemption. Tell her to join this group https://www.facebook.com/groups/HomeEducationNZ/

      Hope this helps! Good luck!


  • Tone

    Hi There, I am new to this site. I have been browsing education options for my 16 year old and 15 year old. Due to unforeseen circumstances we are moving back to New Zealand from Australia. We have only been here a year but the education has been AWESOME. My 2 teenagers are not overly keen to go back to school in New Zealand. I am wondering what other options could be available. We will be in the Manukau area…If any one has any information it would be much appreciated. (-:

    • Hi Tone,

      Are you interested in information on schools or homeschooling?



  • Bridget Casse

    Gosh I have to say my dream job would be to start a home school for all your children who are not finding success in mainstream! I’m a very experienced primary teacher but I think the key to success lies with teaching our young ones how to learn. If we can teach that, they hold the power to learn anything. Learning something follows the same formula whether it’s a toddler learning to walk, or me writing an essay for my post-grad. Teaching thinking skills is key & defining the learning verbs is so helpful when children are young. The thinking hats are a very useful tool for analysing and using to help develop comprehension skills. This website is brilliant for tools to help children learn to learn. http://pamhook.com/free-resources/downloadable-resources/ I’m really passionate about teaching children how to learn, so that they know what to do in order to improve irrelevant of the context. Learning to learn is so much more important than simply knowledge banking on a particular topic. What does one really need to do when I’m told ‘describe something’ or ‘explain’ or ‘analyse this’ – what does that look like when we break it down? The learning verbs introduced in Pam’s site are the base for NCEA, and I see real value in introducing them to kids early. Little ones are so used to learning all the time, so why not expect them to be able to master the right words? I wrote a book on this because I think every young person has the potential to achieve far beyond what some might expect of them. It’s so important also, to find something that your child is excited about – learning is so much more exciting when we are passionate about what we are learning! If anyone is interested in reading more, my book is available here,

    And I am talking about young children learning here http://www.edtalks.org/video/supporting-thinking-our-youngest-learners#.UiLUNBtgfDY

    I REALLY hope some of what I’ve said helps, I’m happy to communicate more with anyone who wishes to know more 🙂

  • Bridget Casse

    Also, for those near Porirua, this free literacy seminar would be worth a look, https://www.facebook.com/manaeducationcentre/posts/511659638917551

    For others, have a look at the Mana Ed centre site anyway – for parents & educators. 🙂


  • Kristen

    Certified nz educator currently home schooling for a family in auckland! Unfortunately the family is moving to England at the end of the year. I’m looking for another opportunity to teach within a home environment. I have CV, recommendations, and would love to show you our amazing school! Please pass along to anyone who is interested in taking the leap to home education but needs guidance/ assistant or full time teacher! I love my job and passionate for children to learn in a small hands on creative approach.

    • Mandy Bunce

      Hi Kristen. I would be really interested in meeting you and chatting. I am looking for a home education tutor for my son. Please contact Mandy 0273582501

  • melissa

    Hello there, i have a 14 year old that has had nothing but trouble will bullying through her schooling years, i am at the point now where i do not want to send her back into the main stream school, the M.O.E, are making it realy hard for me to keep my girl safe aswell as give her the schooling she needs, i am at a loss with what to do, please any advice would be great. Many thanks Melissa

    • Hi Melissa,

      Sorry to hear about the issues you’ve been having – that’s really tough. There are several home schooling groups in NZ and they can be a good source of advice. There are a number of links to these groups in the article above. In order for you to remove your daughter from school, you need to gain an exemption from the MOE and you’ll need to contact your local MOE office about this. Good luck! Rochelle

      • melissa

        Thank you so much for replying, i will look into that once school returns at the end of the month. Once again, may thanks

  • Luna

    Hi there, We are planning an family OE in 2 years, our daughter currently in Montessori Primary will be Year 7 when we hopefully get going. Is the process of applying for an exemption the same if I was to homeschool her on the road? or would the laws in the other countries apply? Thanks and just looking for a starting point.

    • Hi Luna, You would, most likely, be subject to the law in the other countries. Te Kura (The Correspondence School) is a great source of information on these matters so maybe try contacting them. Good luck!

  • Barbara Smith

    Here are a couple of New Zealand Studies that families might find helpful:

    This one was a survey completed by those who had finished being home educated in NZ:
    Beyond Homeschooling NZ 2013 by Jenny Barkley – http://hef.org.nz/2013/beyond-homeschooling-nz-2013/

    Here is a PHD study by Leo Roach:
    PhD study on Home Education in New Zealand – http://hef.org.nz/2010/phd-study-on-home-education-in-new-zealand/

    And a nice one to finish with:
    Employers Look for Right Attitude – http://hef.org.nz/2014/employers-look-for-right-attitude/

  • Yvonne Costar

    Hi I want to home school, my intelligent 15 year old, who is the victim of constant bullying. This has led her to be anti social and suffer from anxiety attacks. She has lots of dreams and ambitions, but the anxiety holds her back from moving forward. Subsequently truancy is an issue with the school system. We have been referred to many agencies and are falling through the cracks there. Our local truancy officer has threatened us with prosecution and when I suggested home schooling told me it costs $2500.00 per subject and that I would not be able to afford it! Please help me.

    Yvonne Costar

    • Hi Yvonne, Sounds like you and your daughter have been having a tough time. The best people to talk to are Te Kura – The Correspondence School – http://www.tekura.school.nz. They’ll be able to advise on the price of courses. You could also contact some of the home school associations listed above – they may also be able to help advise you. Good luck!

    • yvonne harris

      Hi Yvonne my daughter and i have been going through the same thing she is 14 and after a lot of time and effort she is now enrolled in Te Kura on psycho-social grounds due to her anxiety ,luckily we had a good doctor who gave medical certificates to cover the truancy issue so we could get this sorted somewhat I don’t know what will happen as the exemption is only for 3 months at this stage but its something If you get an early leaving exemption for your daughter and then approach Te Kura the course fees are $110 per subject $6100.00 for a full year seeing as she is 15 they may be able to offer assistance or look into the youth guarantee or weltec I wish you both the best

  • Margaret Bourke

    Hi, I have just found your website as I am interested in homeschooling my 15 year old daughter who is finding that the school system is not challenging enough for her. She is very motivated but I am nervous about having structure to her homeschooling so that she will have choices in the future around further study etc. with some internationally recognised qualifications. Could you advise a useful curriculum to follow and could you advise me on the use of Cambridge exams in homeschooling and if they are an option. Also, do you have any idea of the costs involved for Cambridge exams? Thanks for providing such a great website and useful information.

    • Hi Margaret, Are you in New Zealand?

      • Margaret Bourke

        Hi Rochelle, yes we are in New Zealand. We are originally from Ireland but have lived in NZ for over 10 years and my daughter has had most of her schooling in New Zealand. However, she would like to have the option of going to University in Ireland or the UK and that is why I was asking about internationally recognised qualifications/curriculum.

        • Hi Margaret,

          Thanks for the kind words about our site! Unfortunately, I’m not aware of whether Cambridge offers a homeschooling option – I suspect that you’d have to connect with a school that offers CIE exams. Here is the CIE website – http://www.cie.org.uk/ – you may be able to find some information here… otherwise, the Cambridge schools in New Zealand have a website here: http://www.acsnz.org.nz/ and they may be able to help. Good luck with this!


          • Margaret Bourke

            Hi Rochelle,
            Many thanks for all your help – much appreciated! The ACSNZ website is very useful and it looks like they do cater for home schooled children as ‘private candidates’, so I will follow up with them as to how we can organise it. Thanks again Rochelle and best of luck with the website – it’s a great resource and no doubt I’ll be checking it out regularly in the future… 🙂

          • No worries! Hope you are able to get things sorted 🙂

  • Miria Bennett

    Hi guys I have 5 children 4 at school and have become very saddened by there thoughts of school now .my children always loved school but now to severe bullying and verbal abuse from their teachers they now dreed school.They were always at lest a year above in all aspects of their learning and are now dropping which also really worries me.For this I wish to home school my children .Is what I’m thinking the right thing to do or am I just being an overprotective mum.which I have been called by teachers when I have confronted them with my worries. PLEASE HELP.

    • Hi Miria,

      Sounds like a tough time! If you are interested in talking to some people who homeschool, the best thing to do is contact one of the homeschooling organisations listed above. They’ll be able to give you some advice on this.

      Good luck!


  • Hollee

    I am having trouble getting my daughter to attend school she is 15 years old and in year 10. She started cutting a year ago apparently because of bullying, I have been to the school and talked to my daughter about the issues she is having. I was wondering now would home schooling be a better option for my daughter, and how do I go about getting information on how I do this. I want her to have an education but I don’t want the constant battle of getting her to school.

    • Hi Hollee – sorry to hear that – that must really tough for you all. If you want to homeschool your daughter, you could start by contacting one of the homeschooling associations listed above. Once your daughter turns 16, she is not legally required to be in school but before this, you will need to gain an exemption. You can find out more about this by contacting your local Ministry of Education office. Good luck!

  • Kazza

    Hi, We are looking at taking our 4 kids on an overseas adventure for up to a year. We will need to homeschool. Can we still apply to MOE for funding even though we will be out of the country? In doing so I guess that will mean applying to homeschool etc? Thanks for your help in advance.

  • Robyn Bardas

    Hello, We are thinking of homeschooling our 14 yr old daughter in Wanaka, as she’s refusing to go to school. If there are other people down here I would love to get together. I would also love to meet any teachers down here who would be interested in getting involved. Thanks

    • Hi Robyn, Sounds like you have been having a tough time with your daughter – sorry to hear that. The best thing to do is contact one of the local home schooling associations listed above – they’ll be able to help put you in contact with people in your area. Good luck!

  • Evie Sharae

    I’m fifteen years old and I’ve been really unhappy with my education since I started high school. I’m very smart and very capable of sports but school has been a complete struggle for me for two years. And as of this I have been away a lot from school concluding me missing out on so much of my education. I can’t stand school and the pressure of it. I have anxiety and depression and the school counselor and the school itself don’t give a damn. My mum was prepared to home school me when she saw the state of me last year with how school was affecting myself but my current high school stated they wouldn’t let me be home schooled and refuse to accept anything of me being home schooled. My mum is unsure of what to do, she still would like to home school me but doesn’t know how she can help make this happen. Does anyone know how we can get acceptance of home schooling without the local schools decision? Or how we can get acceptance for home schooling in general? Or even any other suggestions?

    • Hi Evie, What country are you in?

      • Evie Sharae

        New Zealand 🙂

        • Ok – so if you want to home school, you need to apply for an exemption from your local Ministry of Education office.

          • Evie Sharae

            Okay, I’ll look into it. Thank you

          • Good luck!

          • Jane

            Hi rochelle how much would it cost for a 14 year old in New Zealand, tauranga be as my daughter is very unsettled at her new college and would like to be home schooled.

          • Friendly_post

            I just made a profile this is jane could you please reply to this comment thanks. 🙂

          • HI Jane,

            The cost of homeschooling largely depends on what resource material you use. The best thing to do is contact Te Kura http://tekura.school.nz/ or one of the homeschooling associations and they can give you some ideas about this. Good luck! Rochelle

  • Joanna

    I read on a website that you can’t enroll your child for homeschooling if they’re 16 years old or older and I was wondering if this was true

  • Aria

    I read on an official website that you can’t home school your child if they are 16 years or older and I was just wondering if it was true and if it’s possible to home school your child for just the last year of high school

    • Hi Aria, If your child is over 16, they don’t legally need to be enrolled in school so yes – you can, and you don’t need to seek any exemptions. Good luck!

  • brooke

    Hi everyone, I put my daughter into at home child care instead of daycare and highly recommend it to anyone else weighing up the two options! The one-on-one quality time with my daughter and an educator was what convinced me and the at home child care service i did it through ( http://lighthouseathome.co.nz ) was excellent!

    Again, if your thinking about it.. go for at home child care!

  • Claire Padiclas

    hey there,
    i’m 15 and i want to be home schooled but both of my parents work, I have been trying to look for private teachers on the internet but i can’t find any.

  • Jenblue

    Hi there – we are currently living in the UK and have 2 children 15 and 6. We have been home educating them both for many years using an international curriculum. My husband has a potential job offer in NZ on a 2 year contract – I do not want to put my children into a school as the nz government website suggests; to go through a de registering process whilst we wait for authorisation to home educate!! This could be potentially disruptive and traumatic for them. My children haven’t attended formal schoolling and so we have no intention to change things as we would only be on a contract – can you suggest what the process would be for for us regarding continuum in NZ without disruption? Many thanks and kind regards

    • Hi JenBlue, Thanks for your message. I’m not certain of the specifics on this – it would probably be best to try contacting one of the homeschooling associations listed at the bottom of this article. Good luck!

      • Jenblue

        Thank you Rochelle – will give that a go x

  • She

    Hello my two boys are really struggling at school they are 14 and 10 they are both really intelligent but one has severe dyslexia and the other one has aspergers. They get teased and left out, called weird and retarded among other things. There is no special help for my boys and their self esteem is really suffering and they are just lost in the crowd, it’s heart breaking I want to look at homeschooling them. What is my best course of action should I get something from their paediatrician? Thank you

    • Hi there – I’m so sorry to hear that your boys are having a tough time – that’s really hard for everyone. If you want to homeschool, you will need to gain an exemption. You need to contact your local Ministry of Education office about this. I’d really recommend also contacting a local homeschooling group as they can give you more specific advice on your situation. All the very best with this!

  • aroha

    hi there i am wanting to home school my daughter as she cant be around to many people. she is under the mental health service . she is 10 years old has been at school for a very long time i dont no how to go about it and get her to do some school work any help would be great . thank you

    • Kia ora Aroha – the best thing to do is contact Te Kura – The Correspondence School: http://tekura.school.nz/ I’d also suggest contacting some of the home schooling associations listed above as they should be able to help you apply for an exemption. Good luck! Rochelle

  • Nick

    Hey, I’m an art student in year 10 and my family and I are looking at homeschooling due to health reason, can I still do art? It’s a massive thing for me and not being at school means I don’t have the face-to-face examples etc

  • Zoe Georgina Ransley

    Hi I am about to finish my teaching degree and am thinking about becoming a private tutor – how do I go about this?

    • Hi Zoe – this can be a bit tricky but a good start can be contacting home schooling associations. Good luck!

  • Josanne Salvaleon

    My son is 7 and I’m thinking of getting him homeschooled. Right now, he’s getting home school tutornig services for langauges from Preply.com ( http://preply.com/en ) and I must say he’s responding better to their style of teaching than at school. I’m seriously considering it.

  • Bronwyn Hunt

    Hi. We are looking at moving towns and wanting to get an idea of whether there are other parents Home schooling in a couple of areas. I can’t find anything easily on the inet for Northland – are you aware of any support groups/families in the Far North? Thanks very much, Bronwyn

    • KF

      Hey Bronwyn, I’m sure there will be a network, it may be more informal though. You could start here and reach out on some of the Facebook or Yahoo groups http://www.nchenz.org.nz/national-support-groups/ Perhaps it will take a couple of families to start a new Northland Facebook group if there isn’t one already! — Jarrod

      • Bronwyn Hunt

        Thanks Jarrod 🙂 Will see how we get on.

  • KF

    Hi Kate, it looks like the info is harder to find for Northland. I’d suggest reaching out to people on the current Facebook/Yahoo groups to see if there’s someone that knows someone: http://www.nchenz.org.nz/national-support-groups/ — Jarrod

  • Bronwyn Hunt

    Hi Kate. We are looking into regular schooling as well, but will let you know if we come across home schooling support too.

  • Serena Chapman

    Hi there I’m wanting to home school my 5 year old daughter I’m about to get the ball rolling with our application but I feel so overwhelmed by the application process any info on starting up would be appreciated I’m wondering was it as complicated as I’m feeling it is I feel like I need to compare myself to a qualified teacher I have confidence in my ability to teach my child and I know that this is the right thing for her and our family but just needing a bit of help in starting.

  • Serena Chapman

    Also wondering are there any special books I need for her learning can I get resources that her teacher will use, I really don’t wana complicate things I have an idea of what I would like her to be learning but with this application process I feel like it’s just to basic.

    • KF

      Hi Serena. The best place to start is the links we provide on this page, and the pages linked to from here. There are links to specialist providers, and bookstores that stock homeschooling resources. There’s a few good links to resources included by people in this thread, a lot of great resources can be found for free on the internet too. Then we recommend getting in touch with your closest home schooling network (try Facebook groups) as this can help to provide you with a network to ask questions and get more information. Best of luck — Jarrod

  • rupertmja

    My son is sick and couldn’t attend skool this year in Auckland, New Zealand. He is 16. I am a teacher and am thinking of homeschooling him next year. What is the best system? I heard Australia has a system of work they send out to you. Anyone done it? Or just study for Cambridge and sit the exams at the end of the year? What to do? Being a teacher, I could probably organise such for like-minded people. But … just starting out …

  • Jordan O

    Really glad to see the discussion and involvement of parents here.
    I am a good example of a homeschooled success story (100%, from Canada, which works much the same way as NZ). I work in a field dominated by computer science degrees, masters, and PhDs, as a fairly successful high earner. I travel, teach myself foreign languages, and have no shortage of opportunity. I even have a fiancee who I filtered for her ability and willingness to homeschool our children if we have them.

    And guess what — I have never been to university or school. I don’t even have a high-school diploma, which was never required for any jobs.
    (And I’ve even been called into 3D animation schools to teach specialist subjects…)

    • KF

      Really inspiring story Jordan, thanks for sharing! The teaching system and structure are important, obviously, but I think at the end of the day it’s all about developing a *desire* to learn, and learning *how* to learn, that makes all the difference in the world. The teacher is just the guide or facilitator of knowledge — Jarrod

  • YinnyGus

    Hi there. I have a 13 year old who is in her fist year of college. She has been bullied extensively over the last 3 years at primary and it has carried on into her college life. She’s to the point where she doesn’t want to return to college after the term break. Can you tell me if she can carry on with the NCEA curriculum via homeschooling? Is this what the Cambridge exams are?

    • LexieC

      Hi I am so sorry to hear about the ongoing bullying your daughter is enduring. I hope that the school has been trying to stop this continuing help in every way possible? She can do NCEA from home via Tekura online school, http://www.tekura.school.nz

  • Jessie Amer

    Hi, so my daughter, her father lives in Auckland and We live in Christchurch and she never really sees her dad because of schooling. Would you think the Ministry of Education would agree on this and would there be a big expense??

  • Jessie Amer

    she is currently in high school as a year 9 aged 13 ??

  • sanjeev kumar

    Hello, I am Sanjeev Kumar and i am on work visa in auckland..my kid will be 5 year old on 30th Nov. Am i eligible for schooling in NZ ..if yes then how much i have to pay

    • KF

      Hi Sanjeev, you’ll need to apply for a Dependent Child Student Visa, or similar: https://www.immigration.govt.nz/new-zealand-visas/apply-for-a-visa/visa-factsheet/dependent-child-student-visa. Most work visas allow a dependant child to study at school here. Once your kid has their student visa, they can apply to enrol at a local school, and they’ll be treated as a domestic student here. So the schooling will be free (aside from the usual school donations, private school fees, etc.). If you want your kid to start in Year 1 from 1 December, you’ll need to act fast. I imagine the visa will take time, and the school will have an enrolment process too. — Jarrod

      • sanjeev kumar

        Thank you for replay, but i have checked. I can apply student visa after 5 year old for kid and that ia completing on 30th nov 2017. After that i can apply… Also if i missed 1st dec date then when i can enroll him

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