Learning area exemptions

​We understand that each child has their own needs when it comes to learning.

If it is unreasonable for your child to receive instruction in one or more of the eight learning areas, you can apply for an exemption.

Exemptions help you tailor your child's education to meet their needs.

When considering an exemption application, we take into account what you tell us about your child. We will not ask you for medical or specialist certificates, it is your judgement that is important.

Examples of when to apply for exemptions

The reasons for applying for exemptions are not limited. Here's why some parents apply for exemptions from particular learning areas.

  • Temporary circumstances where you decrease the number of learning areas for your child who has disengaged with their education due to short-term circumstances. This may include psychological stress or a recoverable illness. For example, you may seek an exemption in a learning area(s) while you gradually reengage your child with learning.
  • Personal interests where you cease instruction in a learning area(s) to allow for targeted learning in areas of your child's interest. For example, you may seek an exemption from health and physical education to allow your child to further explore their interest in ancient history (as part of humanities and social sciences).
  • Disability or special learning needs where your child does not receive instruction in a learning area(s) due to their individual needs. For example, you may seek an exemption from a learning area(s) if your child has an ongoing health condition that limits the time in which they can receive instruction.
  • For an older student who wishes to explore special interest areas related to career or further education goals. For example, you may seek an exemption from mathematics and sciences to allow your child to focus on their intended career in the arts.

Examples of when not to apply for exemptions

An exemption is not always necessary. Here are some examples of when an exemption is not necessary.

  • The learning area is addressed in some part. That is, your child receives some instruction in a learning area. For example, your child's educational program addresses health but not physical education. In this instance, you do not need to apply for an exemption in health and physical education as your child will be receiving instruction in the learning area.
  • Someone delivers instruction to your child other than you in a learning area. For example, if you engage a tutor or arrange for your child to attend school for some subjects (as part of a partial enrolment) means you will not need to apply for an exemption from the relevant learning area.

How to apply for an exemption

You can apply for an exemption when you first register your child, or at any time after.

Complete the relevant section of the Registration for Home Education application form or, if you are already registered, send us an email. 

When applying for an exemption you must:

  • state which learning area(s) you are seeking an exemption from (maximum of seven learning areas)
  • outline why it is unreasonable for your child to receive instruction in the identified learning area(s).

When preparing a learning plan as part of your application, please indicate on the plan under the relevant learning area(s)​, that you have applied for an exemption from that learning area.

You cannot apply for an exemption from all learning areas. If it is unreasonable for your child to engage in any learning, please contact your regional office at the Department of Education and Training to discuss alternative options.

For regional offices' contact information, see:

Still unsure? Get in contact

You're welcome to discuss your child's educational needs with our Home Schooling Unit:

 

For more information, see: