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Registering your child for Home Education with DBE (in South Africa)

How do I register my child for Home Education with the government?

I get asked this question a lot and decided I would put together all the information in one place to help as many parents as possible. I have 4 children, all homeschooled, all registered with the government (grades 2, 3, and 7).

I want to start off by explaining the definition of Home Education given by the government: "Home Education is a programme alternative to attending public or independent schools where a parent of a learner of compulsory school going age may provide education for his/her own child/ren at home." For more information you can visit the official website:

You should also note that the information provided is up to date as of February 2024. However, in my experience, some of the requirements change from year to year and it is important to stay up to date through the government website or attending the Home Education meetings for parents.

  • At what age do I need to register my child? - Requirement is from grade 1

  • Apply for registration before the beginning of each Phase Foundation Phase (grades 1-3) Intermediate Phase (grades 4-6) Senior Phase (grades 7-9)

  • Choose your desired curriculum provider/s. Make sure they are at least aligned with CAPS (many will go above and beyond).

  • Gather necessary documents: - Parent/s certified copy of ID (or passport) - Certified copy of child's birth certificate - Copy of court order (if your child is in foster care) - Transfer certificate from previous school (if applicable) - Copy of last school report/assessment document (from previous school or latest homeschool report) - Weekly timetable (see sample at the end) - Breakdown of terms per year (see sample at the end) - Learning program: list the curriculum you will use for each subject. If using a curriculum provider you can get a list from them. If making your own, put together a list of all the books and online resources you will use for each subject in a Word document (see sample at the end) - Motivation letter (why do you want to do homeschooling?) (see sample at the end)

  • Fill in the Application Form Visit to find your province's application form (right hand side)

  • Email all the documents and application form to the address listed at the bottom of the above webpage.

  • Wait. It can take a long time to receive feedback regarding your application. Just start homeschooling and don't worry. If you want to email back after a month to check on your application you can do so (but wait at least 30 days). But don't stress. You can choose, if you like, to join Pestalozzi Trust as a legal representative of homeschoolers:

  • Keep records. This is required for all homeschooling families. Keep records of your child's work and assessments and reports. This is called a "portfolio." I have used display folders for each child with all their assessments per term in one place. I have one for each grade. I also keep a box full of the books and papers they have done throughout the year and label per year. If it helps, keep a display folder or notebook with their work for each subject. Bottom line, the more organized you are at the beginning, the easier it will be to keep track and save all their work.

  • Assessments You can make your own, or download from trusted sites like Twinkl or Teacha, or you can use assessments provided for you with your curriculum provider.

  • Keep attendance record. Besides a portfolio of work, you are required to keep track of their attendance (school days completed). You can take a look at our Excel document here for 2024.

  • Send reports. Send a report card at the end of each term and then at the end of the year. In Gauteng, we have a Phase Mark Schedule we can complete for each term and at the end of the year. Email us for a sample if you want. You can also download free report cards from our website for each phase:

  • Competent Assessor. A SACE certified teacher needs to evaluate your child's formal assessments at the end of each Phase (grade 3, 6, and 9). Have them write a letter reporting their findings and attach a copy of their SACE certificate. Email this to the same address you sent the application form to.

  • Can I use a tutor? Yes you can but they must only be used for specific subjects/areas and should not replace the parents' responsibility to provide for the education of their child. We know this is a lot. But take it one step at a time. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Message us any time with your questions. We've done this many times and would love to support you in your journey. Here are samples of documents to send with your application (*Please remember these are just samples. You will need to change them to suit your motivation, needs, and time schedule.):

  • Weekly timetable

  • Term breakdown

  • Learning program

  • Motivation letter

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