The Pestalozzi Trust
Who is The Pestalozzi Trust, and what do they have to do with the legalities of homeschooling? Watch the video below to find out. If you don't have time to watch, just keep scrolling for the video summary and relevant links to find out more and sign up to the excellent legal protection they offer.
- The Pestalozzi Trust is one of only three Legal Defense Funds in the world and the only one of its kind in the southern hemisphere.
- The Pestalozzi Trust exists to help its members deal with conflicts threatening their rights to home education, and when this is being compromised, have access to an emergency contact number 24/7 to get in touch with the Trust's legal team.
- The main goal of The Pestalozzi Trust is to prevent the trauma of going to court, but will stand to cover the costs of its members should they be forced to enter the courtroom to defend their rights.
- The legal team behind The Pestalozzi Trust has been built up over more than 20 years and is comprised of people who know the law of home education in-depth. The Trust has won cases in KZN, Gauteng and even Botswana, while also resolving thousands of cases before they could escalate into the courtroom.
- In addition to its primary legal function, the Trust is also able to offer sound homeschooling advice, drawn from the extensive practical experiences of its board of Trustees as well as its staff.
Take the next step with The Pestalozzi Trust
To dive deeper into the details regarding The Pestalozzi Trust, we encourage you to make use of their website, as well as the other resources and contact details provided below. If you're convinced of their necessity to you, we've also provided a quick link to their signup form as well.
Contact & FAQ
Who and what is the Pestalozzi Trust?
The Trust is a registered public benefit organisation, which supports its members when they come into in conflict with the authorities in connection with their home schooling. The Trust protects its members’ rights to choose the kind of education that would be in the best interest of their children.
What happens when a member encounters a problem?
If a member comes into conflict with the education department, welfare or police regarding his home education, the member immediately calls the emergency number of the Trust. Members receive the emergency number in the members’ pack when their membership has been activated. The Trust then assists the family individually.
Is membership of the Trust an alternative to registration with the Department?
No. Some of our members are registered but the majority not. According to the law (SA Schools Act 84 of 1996, sec 51) you have to register. Study the registration requirements and the Policy on Home Education carefully to ensure that you protect your child’s right to education and act in your child’s best interest, and do not get into conflict with the requirements of the Children’s Act if you should register. Contact us for further details.
How do I join the Trust?
Join online on our website. The membership fee is R1,200 per family per annum. If you join before you remove your children from school, or within 3 months of removing them, you pay the reduced fee of R1,080 per family per annum.
PLEASE NOTE: Existing members who renew on time (before their membership lapses) stay on the membership fee level at which they joined. They therefore don’t pay the increased membership fee in future. The membership period stretches over 12 months, from the date of joining the Trust (for example from 1 June 2020) to 12 months after that date (for example to 1 June 2021).You may pay once-off, or you may pay by monthly stop order.
How do I know if my application will be successful?
The Trustees may turn down an application without having to explain their reasons. However, an application is seldom turned down under the following circumstances:
- if the learners are being taught in their own homes;
- if the whole form has been completed and signed,and we have received the correct payment for membership fee;
- if the learners are under the supervision of their parents when necessary, and are not left alone at home, without adult supervision;
- if it is clear that the parents ensure that their children receive an education and if the parents are involved in this education;
- if no legal action has been threatened or brought against the family’s home education or anyone associated with it, and if the family has not been contacted by any school or education official,social worker or other government official concerning their children, their home education, or absence from institutional school; and
- if the family have not been investigated for or charged with child abuse, neglect, or any other related charges.
Do I have to use a specific curriculum when joining the Trust?
No. The Trust does not prescribe to its members which curriculum or approach to follow. Members of the Trust make use of a wide variety of curricula and educational approaches. Parents have the responsibility to choose the curriculum or approach that would the best for their children.
May I teach my neighbour’s children (or any other children) at my home?
You may do that, but the children will NOT receive home education. Home education is defined in the law as education at the child’s own home. If the child is being taught outside of his own home, he does not receive home education. If you do that, you will be running a small independent school, which according to the law needs to be registered as an independent school if you want to operate it legally.