Moving from School to Homeschooling in term 2 | 021


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About this episode

Episode 21, “Moving from School to Homeschooling in Term 2,” offers a comprehensive guide for families considering the switch to homeschooling. It discusses preparation, curriculum choices, and setting a conducive learning environment to ensure a smooth transition.

🎧 Tune into this episode on Apple Podcasts here. 

Key Points:

  • Timeliness of Transition: Anytime is good to start homeschooling, including after Term 1, offering flexibility to families considering the shift.
  • Ease of Transition: Transitioning to homeschooling can be smooth, with support available to address any learning gaps from the previous term.
  • Curriculum Continuity: Homeschooling aligns with the Australian curriculum, ensuring educational consistency and allowing children to seamlessly integrate or revert to traditional schooling if needed.
  • Customised Learning: Homeschooling offers personalised learning experiences, accommodating various learning styles and needs.
  • Registration Process: Parents can initiate homeschooling at any term, and while registration with the education department is required, it’s manageable with resources and guidance from homeschooling providers like Euka.
  • Child’s Well-being: Parents should prioritise their child’s well-being and educational needs when deciding to transition to homeschooling, especially if the child faces challenges in the traditional school environment.
  • School Communication: Clear communication with schools is vital, especially when transitioning to homeschooling, to ensure understanding and support for the child’s educational journey.
  • Future Prospects: Homeschooling does not limit future educational or career opportunities for children, with many pathways available including university, TAFE, traineeships, and other vocational routes.

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Brett Campbell (00:00.975)
Hello and welcome to another episode of Future Learners. My name is Brett Campbell, Chairman and CEO of Euka Future Learning, and I am joined by my lovely host, as always, hostess with the mostess, as I like to say, our wonderful founder and head of education, Ellen Brown. Ellen, welcome back to another episode.

Ellen (00:18.927)
Thank you Brett, I’m always surprised how I get introduced so that’s great, best part of the day.

Brett Campbell (00:23.823)
Yeah, well, you’ll always be the hostess of the mostess for me. So keep it up. Ellen, I wanted to talk about a topic today that is very timely. And also, whether it’s you’re listening to this right now, you know, within a few days or a couple of weeks of us recording this, this will still be timely as it sort of fits one of the big unique differences as it relates to homeschooling. And that is.

when someone can start, when someone can’t start, et cetera, et cetera. And I wanted to talk about this today because there’s a lot of families at this current stage where, you know, we’re sitting here, we’re recording this, we’ve just gone into April. The first term has been completed. The first term, as in, I use air quotes here for those who can’t see, but the first term as it relates to, you know, the standardized schooling system, which again is what most people operate from anyhow. And…

A lot of families at the start of the year were umming and ahhing whether or not they put their children into school or back into school. And we’ve gotten to the end of the first term now. And a lot of them are sitting there going, have I missed the boat? Can I pull my child out of school now? Can I register them for homeschooling now? If I do, what have I missed out on? What are the things I need to be aware of? All of those situations really can start to arise. So I wanted to flesh that out a little bit, especially for those families who are

looking and sitting over these holiday break to really decide whether or not to put this child back into school or to embark on a new way of learning and that is embracing the homeschooling journey. So I guess the first question for you is, are families allowed to do that now given that we’re starting almost starting term two? Can you actually

pull your child out of school right now or do we sort of have to do a full year, do we have to wait? What does that look like?

Ellen (02:23.247)
Okay, so look, the best thing is that all the best news is if you’re in that position, is that you can start homeschooling at any point through the year. So obviously, the earlier in the year makes it a bit easier because you’re not finding that you’re doing a lot of, I guess, kind of trying to work out and catch up. It depends on your child’s circumstances. But as far as what you have to do and the steps you have to go through in order to get yourself

started homeschooling but yes you can start at the beginning of the end of any term at any time through the year and term two is certainly an ideal time to start we’ve seen a lot of families that have said you know no I know last year was tough but we’re going to go back and this is a new year and it just hasn’t worked out the way that they thought or something’s come up already in first term that’s just made it really difficult for their child to be going back to term two.

And so this is ideal time to start thinking about that. You’ve got a couple of weeks over the holidays to be able to get these things in place and ready to start.

Brett Campbell (03:24.463)
Yeah. Something you said that I’m going to play, I’m going to play a parent here for this episode, for the majority of this episode. I’m going to dig into some of the questions and things that you say and what I think people might be hearing as well. As you said, I’m trying to figure out to avoid catch up. Like what, what do you mean catch up? As in I have to go and do the whole term one again or what, what is, what do you mean by that?

Ellen (03:45.263)
Yeah, that’s –

Ellen (03:49.999)
No, not at all. What I really meant was if your child has struggled through term one, you might find that there’s some skills that they haven’t been able to really take on board. And that’s often in the younger grades, it can be to do with the reading and maths. But as they’re getting older, those maths building blocks can be the tricky ones. If your child’s been struggling at school or having some kind of issue at school.

they’ve obviously had some of those building blocks that they’ve missed and that just snowballs, you know? And so parents can often say, you know, how long do I wait before I start homeschooling? If you’re seeing it and in your gut, you feel like this is the right time, there’s nothing stopping you from starting now. And look, oh, sorry, I was just going to add to that about that, you know, let’s talking about that catching up part.

Brett Campbell (04:31.503)
And what? There you go.

Ellen (04:39.407)
So no, even if your child’s had struggles through the term, they don’t have to start at term one. They can start at term two. And we are very, very happy to provide any kind of resources that they need as far as revision is concerned, and especially in math. So even when they start with us, they would start straight into term two and get some of the revision that they need. And that’s important because sometimes the idea of having to start again is a real roadblock.

for a child, you know, to think I’m already behind and we’re just starting. So we always favour on the side of let’s start at term two and then we can help with those things that have been missed out on.

Brett Campbell (05:18.703)
And just to double tap on that, I’ll step out of parent for a moment and become educator slightly here is something that’s really interesting actually, in fact, and it’s the amount of parents at this time of the year, given that it is term two, we’re really only 12 weeks into the year, 10 weeks, eight to 10 week learning block, right? To be fair, a lot of our families actually start, so let’s say they come to Yuka right now and it’s technically term two is on the horizon, they’ll actually start term one.

right in many cases, and they can do the term one, two, three, four in the next nine months in the rest of this year, if that makes sense. So there isn’t no governance where you have to start in term two or you have to start in a specific starting spot. Now, of course, there’s some parameters unless you’re just starting somewhere just because you don’t want to start where you think you should. I mean, we want to try and remove as much confusion as possible, but…

The reality is, is you can start wherever it is that you need to start. And what you’ll probably find is if you start in term one, now again, our curriculum is not exactly like the exact same curriculum you’ll get when you go to a school and it’s exact same lessons and frameworks. So that’s something that’s really important as well, which I might actually get you to talk to a little bit because I know a lot of parents I speak to, it’s like, it’s not like there’s this one.

The Australian curriculum isn’t every single kid answers the exact same question for every single subject on everything, right? That’s not how it’s designed. So there’s flexibility in the learnings and the lessons. And one of the real big, I guess you’d say, breakthroughs that we’ve been able to create with UCA is our ability to have a lot of activities and a lot of your hands -on learning, which is a really, really important aspect as well. But I’ll digress back to the point that I was just trying to make there is…

Let’s say you did start in term one, what you’ll quickly find is whilst your child may not have comprehended or may not have, and again, depending on the reason why you’re pulling your child out of school is you’ll find that there’s probably some shortcuts that they’ve already done in term one that they’ve already got recognition over that they can move through the term one grade even faster, right? So the speed of implementation can also be of massive benefit there. But I wanted, Alan, to…

Brett Campbell (07:38.767)
to ask around the… Because we haven’t touched upon this in the show yet. And it’s almost something that we know to be true, but I know it can be quite a potential confusing point for parents is that not every question is exactly the same throughout the entire curriculum. Can you maybe just give a bit of an outline of when we say it’s mapped to the Australian curriculum and a state curriculum, how…

that programs are actually designed. I think that’d be a very valuable piece.

Ellen (08:12.655)
Yeah, great. So what the schools do and what we do is cover the topics that are set out in the curriculum. So we all do the same topics. The order can be different. So, you know, when they’re looking at, say, history and geography or even science, the order of actual topics can be different.

and the way you teach them would be different. So when we get the Australian curriculum, it has what’s called a content descriptors, kind of like outcomes that are expected to be known in this particular topic. And so our teachers have worked really hard to put together lessons that are very flexible. So unlike school, if you go into a classroom and they say, okay, we’re gonna do, you know, living.

living things in biology, the teacher will have the lessons, you know, mapped out and this is what we’re going to do. Now what we do at UCRE is we have the lessons but we have a variety of activities so that that hits on if you’ve got a child that’s a visual learner, there’ll be something for that child. If you’ve got a hands -on learner, there’ll be something for that child. So being able to pick and choose within the lesson that you could give you.

about how will my child enjoy this lesson best or get the most out of it. I mean, is it a hands -on learner? Let’s go and do the experiment and we might write something on the activity sheet or we might just have a discussion. So that’s where it’s very different. So yes, we are covering the full Australian curriculum. So every content descriptor within the Australian curriculum is covered, but in a very flexible way so that it can fit your child’s needs.

Brett Campbell (09:44.015)
Yeah, yeah, I’m glad we’re able to actually share that because we haven’t talked about that too much. And I think it’s one of one of the most important elements of the program itself, to be fair. I think it’s a really great opportunity. How do we address so, you know, we’re coming into term two, a parent sort of sitting there going, Oh, what do I do? Do I bring them in? And let’s say they make decisions going, okay, now I, I am, I’m committing to this, do I?

Just can I do the whole rest of the year? Should I trial a term? What’s your advice to a parent? And I know how long is a piece of string and everyone has different reasons as to why they’re entering into the ecosystem, let’s call it, but what’s some top level advice that you’d provide there?

Ellen (10:33.871)
I always, I think one of those things, you know, about the Australian curriculum is if you know that you can covering it and you know that schools covering it, it’s you don’t have that fear factor of what if I go and do this with you and, and, you know, we decide to change our mind. So that is a, that’s a really great thing to know that your child’s not going to miss anything by deciding to come into homeschooling. And it also doesn’t mean it’s forever. So,

That’s probably the first thing that I would advise as far as a parent. Is that the question you asked me? If a parent’s thinking about it, whether they should just start or whether they should do a term or a year? I think that’s what you had said. It’s a very personal one. You know, there’s obviously financial benefits in enrolling for a full year beyond the financial benefit because there’ll be a discount involved in that.

It also helps as far as your planning is concerned because you’re looking ahead and this is a decision you’ve made. I think one of the tricky things about going into homeschooling for a term is it’s very hard to get settled and invest yourself in something that you’re still wishy washy about, especially things like getting your resources or your space to learn. If you know this is what we’re going to do this year, then you put that effort into making sure that you’ve got good goals in place and plans. And it means that…

You know, we often find the first term into homeschooling, it takes a little while to get your feet, you know, find your feet in something so new. And so and the department understands that too, by the way, and I’m saying that because sometimes parents go, Oh, we’re in the third week, and we’re still a bit unsure. And we haven’t found this or we’re not. None of that is a surprise to the department. So when they when the end of the year comes in, there’s a review and they go, Oh, you know, I can see how you go. What they’re looking for is progress.

So you give yourself a bit of a take a deep breath and say, well, let’s launch into this. And you get advice from other parents and you try different ways of doing things, different times of day, and you’ll find what works beautifully for your family.

Brett Campbell (12:40.975)
Yeah, we talk about this at length in previous episodes around, again, setting yourself up for success, setting up your day, setting up your term, your week, et cetera, et cetera. So definitely go back and check out those episodes as it relates to that. I want to stay on this topic of parents needing to make a decision. And let’s say someone’s listening to this right now and they’re not too familiar with homeschooling. And outside of obviously,

look, just go to Yuka, jump on the support chat that we have there. Have a chat with one of our team members if you need to, and we can help you get sorted from A to Z. Outside of that, what are some preliminary things that you think a parent should be considering, researching, looking into? Because I think that’s a, once families speak to us personally, once they get to Yuka, the decisions…

generally already been made, you know, in many cases, like, what do you think a parent should be considering researching, looking into prior to, you know, heading over to UCRE and jumping on board?

Ellen (13:57.135)
sure. Look, the very first thing you’ve got to do is to look at your why. And if your why is because this is just something we want to do for our family, we think we’ll really enjoy it, then you’ll have to be aware that you’ll need to register with the department. And that does take a little bit of time. This is a great time of year, I’ve got to say, because the big backlog that happened for the department in January and February is now gone. And so it will be a swifter process. I think they keep the same kind of

information about how long it will take but it’s a far shorter period of time. So if it’s just a this is just something that we’d like to do just understand that it’s going to take a little bit of time and be aware of that as far as your registration.

Brett Campbell (14:38.543)
For a parent like me who’s sitting there, Alan going, how much time, like, how much time are we roughly speaking like?

Ellen (14:43.215)
Oh, I’d have to say, I would have to say it depends on your state. So, you know, if you’re in some states, it’s really quick, like a state like Queensland gives you the opportunity to get started pretty quickly, almost straight away. Yeah, okay. Oh my goodness. Yeah.

Brett Campbell (14:57.455)
Ellen, Ellen, I’m going to need a number here. Like, are we talking days? Are we talking weeks and months? Like, again, parents listening to this might have no idea or concept of that. And for me, getting started quickly is I can start tomorrow. What’s a rough borderline? Are we talking about you can get started in the same day as you register or is this going to take weeks? What’s a rough ballpark?

Ellen (15:07.855)
Okay. Yep.

Ellen (15:20.015)
No. Yeah, so definitely weeks in New South Wales, that’s going to be a longer wait in New South Wales, I’ll say up to three months. But of course, at this time of the year, that’s not the case at all. So it will be a few weeks. And this is for a family who’s saying this is just something I want to do. So being that it’s a few weeks, you might find you have to go back and start term two. And then once your approval comes through, get going. That doesn’t mean you can’t

already enrolled with Yuka. So you can still be enrolled in Yuka if your registration hasn’t come through yet. That’s really important and that means that in the meantime while you’re waiting if your child wants to spend some time going through Yuka and doing some of the things in Yuka they can. So you’re not held back on that but let’s look at a parent.

Brett Campbell (16:06.415)
What if, Alan, I wanna tackle this point here. What if though, I’m a parent and I’m like, I don’t wanna send my child back because I just don’t want to because we’ve decided to, that I don’t want them just to be at the school, we’re gonna do homeschooling. What it sounds like you’re saying is that it may take weeks and you have to send your child back to school. What if I don’t want to?

Ellen (16:10.543)

Ellen (16:28.239)
Well, you would be in that position because something’s happened for your child that makes going back a difficult situation. And that’s a really important one. Whether it’s the department or whether it’s you or anybody, when it comes to homeschooling, it’s always child first. So if this child has had a situation at school that has caused anxiety or some kind of problem that’s happening for that child, where going back to school is actually not a good option,

There’s a few things you can do on that while you’re waiting for your approval. So, so one of the things you can do is talk to the principal and say, you know, is it possible for me to have an exemption while we’re waiting for approval? Here’s the proof to say we’ve put in our registration, we’re just waiting for that. And many times the principal will say yes, because child first, if this child needs this and what you’ve already decided, here’s, here’s an exemption, which is like a free pass to say, yes, you’re still enrolled with us.

by the government’s books until you get your approval through. But we can see that you’re using Yuka and it does help in this case to be able to take the documents that Yuka provides to say, as you can see, we’re covering the curriculum because the principal’s got a duty of care and needs to be able to say the child is being educated and because it’s still under the school’s name. So that’s one option.

And then occasionally that doesn’t work out so well. And then you’re best going to a medical practitioner in that point, if it’s a child with anxiety or something like that, or they may have a counselor or they may have someone that can actually vouch for them and say, we’re going to need some time off while we’re waiting for approval. And then the school obviously accepts that as well. So if there’s a need that they don’t go back to school, there is a way of getting through and making sure that.

that you don’t put them in a situation that’s really difficult.

Brett Campbell (18:20.047)
Yeah, great. I just want to make sure I double tapped on that because you know, you shouldn’t, I’m speaking personal opinion here. I don’t believe anyone should be forced into doing anything that they necessarily don’t want to do per se. However, in the same token, when it comes to children, it’s, it’s, and not everyone has the ability to communicate effectively either. Right? So as a parent, it can be hard to want to share that your child is experiencing.

Ellen (18:32.623)

Brett Campbell (18:49.647)
certain situations because you might not know how to personally handle it or manage it yourself. And that’s totally understandable. And I absolutely understand that. But to know that, look, all else fails. And if you’re unable to clearly articulate or communicate the reason and you want to hold on to the look, it’s because we just don’t want to. And I don’t want to have to necessarily share it. You can go to professionals to be able to get that assistance to be able to then.

Get the information you need. So you’re never ever forced to have to send your child back somewhere whilst they’re waiting for a registration department. So don’t let that be of any concern to you.

Ellen (19:27.983)
Yeah, that’s a that is that is something that’s quite common, Brett, like, you know, there’s a lot of people in the education world who don’t understand that there is a way of homeschooling that’s providing a full education program just as it would be at school. And because they have not got that kind of information, they’re not necessarily always thrilled with that idea. You know, when when you say to somebody who’s been a principal for 30 years, we’re going to go do homeschooling.

the picture that they’re getting is very different to the reality of homeschooling today. And they may not say, what a wonderful idea, here’s your exemption. So it’s just good to know that, you know, legally we’re all allowed to homeschool and that often their reaction is one of not having the information that’s needed. And that’s why taking your registration documents that you could have been able to provide is helpful for them because it gives them insight into, oh, wow, okay, here’s a scope and sequence.

which is a learning plan that’s set out for this child and it’s got what’s happening in each of them. And it gives them some context about, okay, so when you’re talking about homeschooling, you’re talking about UCAT and you’re talking about, you know, this program, that can be very beneficial. But like you say, often that, especially if your child’s had a problem at school, it can be very difficult to think you’re gonna get a positive reaction from school about your changes. And in that case,

you know, go the email. That’s my way of doing it. Go the email if you don’t want the conflict or like you say, get a professional to help you out and your child may be on sick leave until you get your approval through.

Brett Campbell (21:06.383)
I think something you mentioned a little bit earlier around duty of care is as principals have a duty of care. And I truly fundamentally believe that and they should have a duty of care. And it’s not just a, the parents said X, Y, Z. So, okay, cool. Way you go. We, we won’t even question as to why you’re not bringing your child to school. Cause there are lots of circumstances where children are not at school and they’re also not being taught or they’re not getting an education outside of school. And again, depending on how far down a rabbit hole you go with that. And, and,

what rights we should have as parents around educating our children. I mean, there’s, again, lots of differing opinions around that. But also, you know, in one of our previous episodes, we talked about communication and emotional intelligence. And one of the key levers of emotional intelligence is empathy and understanding. And just know that if you’re being questioned by your school, don’t think schools have ill will or their…

Yeah, they don’t care necessarily. Now, of course, there’s some instances that of course, that may be the case to you in your situation, but I’ll just encourage you as well. Don’t try not to have any ill will when you’re being questioned around why you’re doing what you’re doing, right? Because I would want that from my principle if, you know, and here’s another example, right? Is there’s lots of parents who are single parents and they have children.

And one of the parents wants to just pull their child out of school. If you’re the alternating parent, you want to understand why and what, and there needs to be those conversations and communications that happen. And I would at the very least want my principal to be able to at least raise the question around, Hey, what’s going on here? Now, if you meet a principal and they’re like, no, your child’s coming back to school. Um, then that’s, that’s where they probably crossed the line as in they aren’t even seeking first understand. And that’s the main parameter there is just know that.

You’re never ever outside of, you know, I guess you’d say the, the minority of cases is, you know, majority of families are not bringing their children to homeschooling just because it’d be cool. And we’re going to try something different. That’s, that’s generally, that’ll become more and more popular, which it is starting to. And we’ve seen that over the last two years, especially post COVID it’s, we’re starting to see more of a lifestyle change, which is really exciting for many families. Cause now it’s like,

Brett Campbell (23:29.711)
You can actually learn in your own backyard, like literally the backyard of Australia and even around the world. And it just opens up so many different opportunities. But again, it’s the majority of families have a really specific use case for homeschooling and it can be a very touchy subject and very emotionally charged subject. So just if you’re ever stuck or you’re not sure how to navigate a situation as it relates to homeschooling again,

feel free to reach out to you, we’ll be able to, there isn’t probably a conversation that we haven’t had with a family in a situation or circumstance that we wouldn’t be able to provide you with, hey, look, here’s what we would look to do, here’s what we would suggest you do next, et cetera, et cetera. So I think that’s always there for you as well, depending on your situations and so forth. So, Alan, what else is there that any families need to consider about jumping into term two?

Ellen (24:28.303)
Look, I think what’s happened in term one is something you’ll reflect on. So if you’re jumping into term two and your child has had a difficulty in the term and you think to yourself, you know, let’s just make sure that there’s any anything that we’ve missed out on and you want to start at term two, then you can always ask the team to add maths.

maths and English even if needed from term one into the child’s portal so that it’s there for a backup if you need it. So that’s something that we do and you know anytime that that’s needed what you’ll probably find and what our families often find is what they think their child’s up to and what they’re actually up to are sometimes quite different because you know in a classroom it’s quite easy to just fly under the radar when it comes to what you don’t know and so don’t

If your child starts in term two and they’re struggling a bit, don’t be surprised and don’t be concerned in that you know that you just got that support there to help you out, you know? So you may need to go back to term one. And in some cases, we find students actually need the grade below to be added in the maths, particularly, or even in the maths and English.

And we can certainly do that for you as well. So starting in term two, the big idea is just being able to say, you know, what’s happened in the past is in the past and let’s move forward with real purpose. And that we’ve got the tools to be able to do that. As far as you’ve looked at registration now and knowing, yes, we have to do registration.

You’ve talked about the difficulties as far as schools are concerned. Schools always gonna think school’s best or they wouldn’t be at school. So you wouldn’t be working in school if you didn’t think it was best. So just keep that in mind when you’re going into that. And then the next thing is getting yourself organized, which is one of the exciting and fun parts. And most of the time you’ll find that because you’ve worked through this decision with your child, they’ll be really enthusiastic about.

Ellen (26:28.047)
starting to get your program organized and printing off activity sheets and things like that. And getting that organized before term two even starts is really great because then they feel like not only have they got rid of that feeling like somehow that term’s been difficult and I’ve been left behind, but I’m actually in front because I’ve already got my term two so I might have already started doing some of my work in the school holidays, which means I’m going to have holidays sometime during the term instead. So yeah.

Brett Campbell (26:56.303)
Yeah. Yeah. All great things to consider and think about. Um, but I think we’ve definitely tackled the conversation as it relates to if you’re sitting there at home and you’ve already made decision or you’re considering making the decision, consider this a sign to investigate further, reach out to the team at Yuka, head over to the website, yuka .edu .au. Uh, we’ve got an amazing help desk and support chat function there that you can just reach out to the team, ask any question if you’ve got any, um, again, read through the website, gather your information.

Um, and if you, um, decide to move forward with homeschooling and move forward with, with Yuka, we’d love to have your board and, and, uh, help you and your family, uh, with a, an entirely new way of learning a new way of dreaming and a, and a, and a new way of living. So really exciting, um, opportunity ahead. So with that being said, Ellen, uh, would you like to sign us off with some extreme words of wisdom, please? What do you got?

Ellen (27:51.887)
Look, I’ll give you one last one and this is one that sometimes parents, especially in high school, they’ll say, you know, but what about the future? What does the future look like? If I take them out of school, have I somehow changed what they’re capable of doing in the future? And

The answer is a resounding no. You haven’t limited them at all. In actual fact, we have a lot of partner universities in every state, options for students if they want to go into uni. They even have the opportunity to start things like that earlier than students who are at school and without the big stress of major exams. So there’s no limit. We’ve got students going to TAFE. We’ve got students on traineeships and off to the ADF and off to university. So there’s…

There’s no, there’s nothing that your child can’t do moving out of homeschooling. So it’s just one of those things that parents often worry about. So I’ll leave you with that.

Brett Campbell (28:46.607)
There you go. There’s nothing that your child cannot do with homeschooling. Thank you, Alan. And thank you for tuning in. If you enjoyed today’s episode, please be sure to head over to iTunes, Spotify, drop us five star reviews there. If you’re on YouTube, make sure you subscribe to YouTube. You get to see myself and Alan on the video format. That’s if you can stand watching us. But definitely while you are there though, drop a thumbs up and leave us a comment. We like to read your comments. As always,

Thank you so much and thank you for tuning in and we will see you on the next episode. Bye for now.