Home education in Australia

Henry’s story

Home education in Australia is well established. Seventeen-year-old Henry has been home studying with Wolsey Hall for eight years, starting on our Lower Secondary courses. Henry has been able to achieve a high quality education while swimming competitively for Australia in the Deaflympics. We last caught up with Henry four years ago following his Deaflympics appearance and it has been interesting to talk to him again about his reflections on homeschooling.

“My Mum decided to homeschool me because she felt that the schools were failing my development as a student and as a deaf person. I remember Mum saying that when she found Wolsey Hall, ‘it was everything that she wanted and needed’.

Pictured in banner: Henry with Olympic swimmer Ian Thorpe and the Lord Mayor of Sydney, Clover Moore.

Henry is homeschooling in Australia

Wolsey Hall Oxford is proud to support students in 123 countries around the world.

Henry is homeschooling in Australia

The decision to homeschool

“I always said to my Mum that the best decision she made was to pull me out of school to educate me at home. I absolutely love my time being homeschooled and would miss it when I eventually leave. I love my relationship with Pat, my Student Progress Manager. She has given Mum and myself her unwavering support and love all these years, and I am so privileged and honoured to have met up with her when we went over to Oxford.”

“I also love my relationship with my Tutors, especially those who have been with me from the start, like Michelle for History and Wendy for Maths. They really worked closely with me to make me the best version of myself possible. Wolsey Hall has developed a lot of who I am today. They have given me the tools to go out and do anything and everything I could want to do, so there is no doubt they have my utmost support in the future.”

Misconceptions about homeschooling

“As a homeschooler, I must say you should expect people to try and put you down as they think that homeschoolers have a Netflix and chill approach towards our education, unlike the pressures they would get at school. But remember this, we actually have more pressure than the ones at school. We invited the pressure; we decided to separate ourselves from the education system and always put ourselves in a position to work to become the best versions of ourselves.”

“I know I had to do it without any support until Wolsey Hall came into my life. I know that people around me underestimate my ability simply because of the camouflage that homeschooling gave me, which did not allow them to put me in a ‘box’.”

Henry is homeschooling in Australia

“I have three tips I would give to those considering homeschooling”

One: Homeschooling is great fun if you do it properly!!! I cannot stress this enough; when you have a great structure suited for your learning style, you will have a lot of fun!!!

Two: Ignore everyone that puts down homeschooling. If they have not done it, then they cannot comment on it. It is as simple as that, and yes, you might come by people who had tried homeschooling before but did not enjoy their experience; that is going back to tip one!

Three: Forget about the stigma that homeschooling is about imprisoning yourself in a room with your textbook in front of you, it is a lot more than that, and I will let you figure that one out for yourself!

“I wish you the best of luck if you do choose to take this great pathway, enjoy!”