Firstly, Home schooling is completely legal in Ireland. The Education (Welfare) Act 2000 was passed into law in July 2002 & the Act provides for the establishment of the National Educational Welfare Board (NEWB) which originally had the responsibility to ensure that each child aged six and upwards attends a recognised school or otherwise receives a certain minimum education. That responsibility has since been transferred to Tusla, the Child and Family Agency.
Home schooling is now officially recognised by the new legislation & the Parents constitutional right as the primary & natural educator of the child is acknowledged.
Your right to Home Educate is enshrined in Article 42 of the Irish Constitution, Bunreacht na hEireann.
To home-school, you must register your child with the TUSLA pursuant to Section 14 of the Act.
Firstly, write to the TUSLA, Block D, Park Gate Business Centre, Parkgate Street, Dublin 8, notifying them of your intention.
They will then forward an application form and a copy of the Guidelines on the Assessment of Education in Places Other Than Recognised Schools which is prepared and issued by the Department of Education and Science.
You must complete, sign and return the application form along with a certified copy of your Child's birth certificate.
On receipt of these documents, Tusla will write to you confirming same and their intention to contact you in the near future.
As soon as is possible you should receive notification from Tusla & subsequent contact to arrange an interview with the parents.
This is known as ‘a preliminary assessment’ & does not require children to be present.
The interview involves an assessment of:
Following the conclusion of the interview the Authorised person will discuss his/her findings with the parents.
As soon as possible the Authorised Person will prepare an assessment report which is forwarded to a reviewer within Tusla who will then make the final decision.
If it is agreed that a ‘minimum education’ is being provided, then the child’s name will be put on the Register.
After a approximately two months a report will be issued for each child & a covering letter stating that the child is, in the opinion of Tusla, receiving a ‘certain minimum education & that the child’s name has now been added to the register.
If the ‘preliminary assessment’ is inconclusive or the child is deemed to be not receiving a ‘minimum education’, then a ‘comprehensive assessment’ will take place.
This will involve:
Following the conclusion of the comprehensive assessment, the Authorised person will discuss his/her findings with the parents.
As soon as possible following completion of the Comprehensive Assessment, a draft Assessment report will be prepared.
The report will:
The report will be forwarded to TUSLA within twenty eight days of the assessment.
Under Section 15 of the Education (Welfare) Act, there is provision for an appeal to be heard by a committee appointed by the Minister for Education and Science, in respect of a decision of TUSLA.
The first step is to fill in the forms and let Tusla know that you want to home educate your child(ren).
It is an easy and straight forward process. Click on the button below to get the forms.