If you bring this topic of conversation up amongst homeschoolers, one thing is guaranteed – the can will be open, and the worms will be everywhere. This is an extremely complex issue and ultimately, one which Mindscape Education recommends any parent to give considerable thought.
There are three pieces of legislation in South Africa that come to mind when pondering this conundrum. One is the South African Schools Act, 1996. The other is the Children’s Act, 2005 and the third is the South African Constitution. Yes, there is a law that stipulates that we must register our homeschooled children with the Department of Education. There is also legislation that says not doing so is punishable by a fine, or imprisonment, or both. But as a parent, you have a constitutional right to choose the kind of education your children receive, the nature of the content they learn about, and you also have a legal responsibility to always act in your children’s best interests.
We are aware of stories about intimidating Department officials arriving unannounced, yet we have also heard the complete opposite – positively glowing accounts about how helpful and constructive Department staff and officials have been. At Mindscape, the choice is yours. Should you choose not to register your child with the Department, we completely respect your decision and shall not force you to comply with the regulations as set out by the Department.
In conclusion, do your research. Lots of it. Nobody can tell you what is best for your family and nobody can make a decision as important as this one on your behalf.