Distance Education

Distance education is provided to ACT resident students who are unable to attend the school they are enrolled in due to isolation or special circumstances. Distance Education programs are provided for ACT resident students by the NSW Department of Education and Training, following the NSW Curriculum and funded by the ACT Education Directorate (the Directorate).

Distance education is provided for by the following distance education centres (DEC):

  • Queanbeyan Primary School DEC - Primary school children
  • Karabar High School DEC - Secondary school children

Both full time and single course study programs are available for students meeting defined eligibility criteria.

Distance education summary

Full time educational programs are available to support ACT resident students enrolled in both ACT public and non-government schools who are isolated or whose special circumstances prevent them from attending school on a regular basis.

Single course (language) distance education may be provided to ACT resident students attending an ACT public high school or college if the desired language is not offered at the school OR the language is not offered at a suitably advanced level for the student. Karabar DEC offers the following languages for study through distance education: French, German, Italian, Japanese, Indonesian and Latin.

Single course distance education for other subjects may be available on a case by case basis.

As single course distance education for students attending ACT non-government schools is not funded by the Directorate, ACT non-government schools should contact the relevant DEC to discuss enrolment of students for single courses.

Approval for Distance Education requires a parent, carer or school to submit a completed application with supporting documentation to the Directorate for approval.

Summary of the Distance Education application procedure

  1. Parent/carer/school contacts the Directorate to enquire about approval for Distance Education and request an application form. The parent/carer/school is encouraged to investigate the distance education programs available to ACT resident students, by looking at the DEC's websites.
  2. Completed application form is returned to the Directorate. The application must include the supporting documentation stipulated on the enrolment form.
  3. If approved, the Directorate advises both the parent/carer/school and the DEC that DE is approved. Approval is initially for one term only. The DEC then contacts the parent/carer/school to organise enrolment.
  4. If the student demonstrates satisfactory participation in the DE program, DE will be approved for the remainder of the calendar year.
  5. If necessary, the parent/carer/school contacts the Directorate to discuss continuing the provision of DE for the next calendar year.

Questions and answers

I live in NSW and my child attends an ACT school. Am I eligible to apply for Distance Education through the ACT Education Directorate?
The Directorate does not approve applications for Distance Education for residents of NSW. NSW resident applicants should contact the relevant Distance Education centre directly.

When do I need to submit the application for my child to begin the new school year?Applications for full time enrolments for term 1 should ideally be received by the Directorate by November 1 in the previous year. Applications for students beginning a Higher School Certificate (Year 12) course should be made by the end of term 3. Applications for students with special or unforeseen circumstances can be received at any time.

How long does the application process usually take?
The usual timing for processing and approval of applications is ten (10) business days.

My child is suffering from mental health issues. Can I use as a supporting document a report from our psychologist that was issued a year ago?No. Parents and carers of students with significant support needs, including mental health, severe disruptive behaviours, severe anxiety or school phobia preventing attendance at an ACT school will need to submit with their application a current letter from a registered psychologist, psychiatrist or paediatrician specifically recommending distance education.

I rent in the ACT. Can I still apply for Distance Education for my child? Yes. A current electricity, gas or telephone tax invoice may be submitted as proof of your residential address.

Further information

Distance education approvals for ACT resident children

Assistant Manager, Liaison Unit
ACT Education Directorate
Phone: +61 2 6205 5429
Online: Education Directorate Contact Form External Link via Access Canberra

Distance education curriculum for kindergarten to year 6 students

Queanbeyan Distance Education Centre
Phone: +61 2 6299 2966
Web: Queanbeyan Distance Education Centre

Distance education curriculum for year 6 – year 12 students

Karabar Distance Education centre
Phone: +61 2 6298 4300
Web: Karabar High School and Distance Education Centre