This page is to provide information about the ERO process in New Zealand.
The ERO office is responsible for overseeing the quality of education in NZ. They curretnly review all New Zealand institutions and homeschoolers.
Here is a copy from the ERO website about the ERO process:
Why is homeschooling reviewed?
Your child, along with every other child in New Zealand, has a right to education.
While most New Zealand children are educated in schools, the Government also makes provision for parents to make other choices. You've taken on the responsibility of educating your child. In order to do this, you will have sought and been granted an exemption from enrolling your child at a registered school. This is commonly referred to as homeschooling or home educating.
In granting you this exemption, the Secretary for Education accepts that your child will be taught at least as regularly and well at home as in a registered school.
The Education Review Office (ERO) is the government department that reports on the education of students in schools and early childhood services, as well as on the education of exempted (or homeschooled) children.
An ERO report assures the Government that each exempted child is being taught as regularly and well as in a registered school. It also provides the parents with an independent report on their child's education.
If a child is not being taught as regularly and well as in a registered school ERO can recommend to the Secretary for Education that the Certificate of Exemption be revoked.
What is the ERO review process?
ERO will notify you well in advance that you have been scheduled for an ERO review and what the process will be.
There are five parts to an ERO review:
- initial preparation and information gathering;
- meeting with the parent (and child);
- checking and evaluating all the assembled information;
- writing an 'unconfirmed' report, including the findings and opinion (sent to the parents for comment); and
- confirmation of the report by ERO.
The notification letter from ERO will tell you when the home meeting has been scheduled and who the review officer(s) will be.
If the time scheduled is not convenient you may contact ERO to arrange another time. If you do not wish the review officer(s) to visit your home, you may make arrangements with ERO for an assessment of your child's education at another venue.
The letter will tell you what information you will need to provide before the meeting with ERO takes place, and what you might need to have ready for that meeting. For instance, before or during the home visit, the review officer may want to see your Certificate of Exemption, your original Ministry of Education Information Statement or your latest version of this, or other material that describes your education programme.
What you say you want to achieve for your child is the basis for the review officer's evaluation, so information of this kind is important for the review.
The review visit should take up to two or so hours. It is usually conducted in your home, where it is easiest for you to show the review officer how you and your child work.
If you are educating more than one child at home, the visit will usually include a separate review for each child.
The review officer needs to see evidence that shows your child is being taught at the level and capability of the child, and at least as regularly and well as in a school. This evidence is likely to be in the form of your overall planning, examples of the child's work, conversations with you and with your child, and anything else that shows how you carry out the task of educating your child.
The review officer will ask about the programme you are providing. This means all the sorts of things the child does, the activities you provide, or a ready-made commercial curriculum. You will be asked about the teaching and learning resources you use, your work areas, how you use the environment and the community, the social contact you provide, and how you know your child is learning.
The review officer will talk to your child only in your presence. Chatting to your child about the sorts of things they like learning and how they learn best assists the review officer to confirm that the education programme you provide matches your stated objectives for your child.
Following the visit, the review officer writes a report based on all the assembled information. At this stage the report will be sent to you as an unconfirmed report so you can correct any wrong information. The review officer will tell you how soon after your meeting you can expect to see this report, and how long you have to reply.
The review officer will consider all your comments and will amend the unconfirmed report if needed. ERO then confirms the report and sends it to you and to the Secretary for Education.
What will be in the report?
Your own education programme for your child is the basis for the ERO evaluation. ERO’s report will cover areas of good performance and areas where improvements should be made. The review findings lead to a judgement about whether or not your child is taught as regularly and as well as in a registered school. The ERO report on your child’s education is not a public document, and is given only to you and to the Ministry of Education.
Who are the review officers?
ERO has a specialist unit of trained review officers to carry out reviews of homeschooling.
All ERO review officers are professional education evaluators who operate under set guidelines and a code of conduct.
The Education Review Office
The Education Review Office, often called ERO, is a government department. Its primary purpose is to support and promote improvement in the quality of education by providing regular, independent, high quality evaluative reports on the pre-tertiary education sector.
ERO reports on all New Zealand schools and early childhood education services, and on the education of students exempted from enrolment at school.
ERO also publishes reports on national education issues. These and other ERO publications are available from ERO, and are on ERO’s website: www.ero.govt.nz.
For further information, contact the homeschooling unit of the ERO office.
Education Review Office – Corporate Office
Level 1, 101 Lambton Quay
Box 2799, Wellington
Phone: 0-4-499 2489 , Fax: 0-4-499 2482
There are also a number of current and former homeschoolers who are willing and able to help support you before and during your ERO review. Feel free to your contact details and which area you are in and we will endeavour to put you in contact with somebody who can help.
There are a multitude of books and resources available and many of these have New Zealand suppliers.
Click here to find a list of NZ curriculum suppliers.
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