Home-schooling: Is it suitable for my child

Updated: 12 Jun 2014
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Home-schooling is a form of education that encourages children to learn outside of a school setting under parental supervision. It is an alternative to government or private schools. However, home-schooling may not be suitable for all children or be feasible for some households to undertake. It has its advantages as well as unique challenges.

What is home-schooling

Home-schooling is a type of education that allows the family to determine what is to be learned and how it should be taught, while still adhering to government regulations. It arose from some parents' desire that their child receive education that is also focused on character building and personal development.

The home-school programme in Singapore is nevertheless highly regulated by the Ministry of Education (MOE) to ensure that quality education is provided to home-schoolers.

Advantages & disadvantages

If you are considering home-schooling your child, you should first weigh its advantages and disadvantages.


  • The curriculum can be adjusted to suit the specific needs of your child.
  • Moral & spiritual values may be infused into the curriculum so he or she can learn more than cognitive skills.
  • Flexibility in schedule allows you & your child to spend more time together.
  • Your child learns in a pressure-free environment.


  • Limited interaction with other children their age may hinder your child's social & emotional development.
  • Your child may receive a biased point of view because he or she is taught only by you.

How to apply for home-schooling

You need to satisfy a few criteria before your child may be exempted from Compulsory Education:

  • You have to furnish MOE with information on the intended curriculum & education outcomes of your home-schooling programme.
  • You need to indicate how your child will receive instruction in National Education.
  • Your child has to attempt Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) in 4 subjects at Standard Level above the age of 11 but before 15.
  • Your child has to meet the same PSLE benchmark as children attending the San Yu Adventist School.

Enquiries can be made at:

Compulsory Education Unit, MOE
1 North Buona Vista Drive, MOE Building Tower Block Level 15, Singapore 138675
T: 6879 6458/9
F: 6778 9356
E: moe_ce@moe.edu.sg

How to prepare for home-schooling

To be equipped for home-schooling, you are encouraged to consider the following:

  • Set educational goals for your child, beginning with MOE's syllabuses from the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board (SEAB) , & changing them only as required to suit you & your child's needs.
  • Manage expectations of your family & friends to avoid tension when things do not go according to plan.
  • Prepare the necessary materials, such as textbooks, assessment papers & other teaching aids.
  • Design a daily schedule that allows flexibility & is viable at the same time.
  • Organise social activities that let your child hone his or her interaction skills.


Education is compulsory for children between 6 to 15 years old. Parents or guardians who fail to comply with this and who do not possess exemptions from MOE will be penalised.