Homeschooling from Kindy to University

Homeschooling from Kindy to University

By Umm Saffiya

We began our home schooling journey almost 12 years ago alhamdulilah. It has been a turbulent ride and I can't say how grateful I am that we managed to make it this far.

My eldest, and first to be registered for home schooling, completed her year 10 certificate, at the age of 15, in August 2019. To say we felt a sense of accomplishment is an understatement! Alhamdulilah!!

She already had some interests which she wanted to pursue, so before she'd even completed year 10, I began to search for options. Especially since the NSW regulations had changed and a child either has to be legally registered as a home schooler, in tertiary education, or working full time, until the age of 17. She wasn't interested in doing year 12, so we began to look at tertiary options.

My daughter had always loved design - computer related technologies, character design and graphic design, so I knew where to begin.

Unfortunately a university degree wasn't an option at this stage, as all of them wanted either a year 12, a mature age student, a heap of work experience, or some tertiary education ( usually a cert 4 as it equates to more than a year 12)

I finally found an online certificate 4 in Digital media technologies through TAFE which seemed to tick all of the boxes. It also seemed to be enough as a bridging course into most universities in a similar field. TAFE required a year 10 completion, which we had, so we continued with the enrollment process and were accepted.

2 years later my daughter finally finished alhamdulilah. It was a struggle and definitely a challenge!!!! Just like home schooling has been a learning process and full of bumps and stumbles, so has our introduction into tertiary education. Here is what I've learnt so far, and my recommendations based on our experiences.

1) a certificate 4 is a huge leap from year 10, through home schooling. Especially if they're used to doing it with "mum" I thought I was pretty vigorous and strict with my implementation, but my daughter realised it was not the case after being accountable to a whole heap of other professionals. She struggled quite a bit with the work load and content and I was constantly seeking to outsource help as it was limited through TAFE.

2) I recommend starting off with cert 2 or 3, if your child does not want to do year 12 and needs tertiary education for a university entry. There are options to do this through open universities, TAFE and various other universities. You can then use this to work your way up. It looks something like this

*Cert 2 or 3 ( or undergraduate certificate) or

* you can jump straight to a certificate 4

This will gain you access into a bachelor degree, or you can take the slow road and do the diploma first after a cert 4, and enrol into the degree 1 year later. It's the same length of time to complete the whole degree.

3)I also recommend that even though many universities say the student has to be over 18 or etc, you apply and enquire anyway, as I enquired at 2 different universities who offered her a place despite her age. It's always worth asking, despite what it says on the website.

We plan to enrol into the diploma of graphic design which is a 12 month course and completing a further 2 years to finish the bachelor in design at Torrens University insha Allah this September.

With my second daughter, who is currently doing her year 10, we are taking a different path. We are looking at completing our year 12 certificate insha Allah.

Our options so far are -

*Year 12 certificate through home schooling registration (this does not achieve an ATAR, but can be a university entry)

*Year 12 through complete education Australia (same as above, no ATAR) or * Year 12 through OTEN and she can sit the HSC exam for an ATAR.

The only reason we are considering this is because we haven't quite figured out which path to take for her tertiary education yet. She has likes and interests, but we haven't found any certificate 2, 3 or 4 in the field. So we'll see how we go.

All the best ladies, hold on, it's a bumpy ride, but so rewarding in the end. Um Saffiya xx