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Sydney Distance Education High School

Sydney Distance Education High School

Quality individualised education

Telephone02 9383 0200

Fulltime enrolment

Fulltime enrolment

Enrolments should be for a minimum period of one term and applications need to be made with the appropriate referrals and certification.

Students with a confirmed moderate or severe intellectual disability require the specialised distance education mode of delivery provided by The Sir Eric Woodward Memorial School Distance Education Support Unit (DESU). The specialised support provided by this unit cannot be provided by other distance education schools. Application for the Distance Education Support Unit is made through the Online Access Request Process.

Medical (category 2.5)

These students have a physical medical condition that prevents them from attending school on a regular basis. Specialist medical documentation is required.

Pregnant students/young parents (category 2.6)

These students are prevented from attending school by their pregnancy or the care for their young children. Medical documentation or birth certificates are required.

Vocationally talented students (category 2.7)

These students are employed in the entertainment industry or are students participating at elite levels in the performing arts or sport. Significant supporting documentation is required.

Students with additional learning and support needs (category 2.8)

These students have a diagnosis, confirmed disability such as autism or mental health condition (eg anxiety, depression) which impacts on their engagement in learning and prevents them from attending school on a regular basis.

Documentation from a mental health professional and endorsement from the local education office of the Department of Education is required.

Transition for students with significant support needs (category 2.9)  

These students require endorsement from the local education office of the Department of Education. They have been assessed as not being able to attend their local government high school on a regular basis.

A managed transition strategy will be developed between the local government school and Sydney Distance Education High School.

Contact information

Fulltime enrolments enquiries: (02) 9383 0213


How to enrol at SDEHS

For further information on fulltime enrolment, please refer to the following documents.


If an enrolment application meets the appropriate requirements, please download and submit the following documents. Relevant supporting documentation must also be supplied.

  1. Application to Enrol in a NSW Government School (PDF 2.2MB)
  2. 2024 - SDEHS Enrolment Application (Years 7-12) (PDF 4.7MB)
  3. 2024 - SDEHS Enrolment Application (Years 9-12) - for Schools in Youth Justice Settings (PDF 625KB)


Supplementary forms

Additional supplementary forms to use by DoE schools only:


Change of supervisor

Change of supervisor forms for home students and SSPs:


Student attendance

Distance education is governed by the same policies as apply to all NSW government schools, including policies on student attendance. Regular attendance at school is essential if students are to maximise their potential and meet the requirements of the law. Schools and parents share responsibility for promoting regular attendance. See our Student Attendance policy for more information.

The NSW Department of Education School Attendance Policy requires that Principals of NSW government schools ensure:

  • that when frequent absences are explained as being due to illness that:
    • consultation occurs with parents regarding the health care needs of the student
    • medical certificates are sought for the absences
    • where there are ongoing concerns, approval is sought from parents to contact the student's doctor so that the school has all the relevant information regarding the student's health care needs.

Sydney Distance Education High School measures attendance by the amount of work completed. Each week, in each course, students are expected to complete a set of work. This work is submitted through elearning or returned by mail. Individualised Learning Plans and Personalised Learning Plans and Pathways for identified students are also taken into consideration.

Distance education schools keep records of student–teacher contacts and also use this information to assess satisfactory attendance. Teachers and faculties monitor the progress of individual students. Teachers review all students on a weekly basis to check they are returning work regularly and have work to go on with, as summarised in Sydney Distance Education High School Teachers Roles and Responsibilities. Teachers refer any issues to the Faculty Head Teacher or Year Adviser as outlined in the Referring On Guide – A quick Guide for Teachers.

Students are considered to have satisfactory attendance if they have completed more than 75% of their study program, as identified in the Student Attendance and Review procedure. This is consistent with Centrelink’s requirement that schools report if a student has “submitted a satisfactory number of assignments in sufficient subjects to maintain progress at 75% of a normal full-time workload”. However, ABSTUDY requires students to “attend a minimum of 85% of days in a school term”, which means that ABSTUDY students must complete 85% of their study program.

The Student Attendance in Government Schools Procedures (2015) states that parents or carers of children of compulsory school age are responsible for ensuring that their child attends school every day. Children must commence school by age 6 and then complete Year 10. After Year 10 and until they turn 17, students must be:

  • in school, or registered for home schooling, or
  • in approved education or training (eg TAFE, traineeship, apprenticeship) or
  • in full time, paid employment (average 25 hours a week) or
  • in a combination of work, education and/or training.

For students younger than 17 whose attendance is identified as being less than 50%, the Head Teacher Welfare will ensure that a broad range of strategies are put in place to support the student. These may include:

  • a Years 7–10 part program ie a student does some of the required courses in a year
  • a Years 11–12 Pathways program ie a student completes Stage 6 over more than 2 years
  • ongoing communication from class teachers. eg phone, emails
  • referral to Year Advisers, Faculty Head Teachers, Head Teacher Welfare or Head Teacher Secondary Studies for follow up.

Refer also to The Enrolment of Students in Government Schools: A Summary and Consolidation of Policy (1997) and Protecting and Supporting Children and Young People Policy and Procedures.