Leendert and Karin van Oostrum have practised, studied, and advocated home education for more than twenty years. They were instrumental in founding all of the homeschooling associations in South Africa and the Pestalozzi Trust, the South African Legal Defence Fund for Home Education. Leendert wrote much of the law on home education and currently serves as President of the Pestalozzi Trust. Over the past decades, Leendert and Karin have counselled thousands of families on home education. Their own children (16, 20 and 26) have been educated entirely at home. (The eldest two both went to school for the first time at age nineteen - in the capacity of teachers!)
Before starting a family, Karin studied Latin, worked as a language practitioner and did youth work. As home maker and homeschooling mother, she also serves the homeschooling community as company secretary of the Pestalozzi Trust. Leendert worked for thirty years with young people in academic and work settings, observing the effects of school education on their development. His research on home education was the first in this field to be awarded a postgraduate qualification (M.Ed cum laude) in South Africa. This thesis is cited by almost all subsequent local research on home education.
Leendert has testified on the merits and practice of home education in the national and provincial parliaments as well as in several high courts where home education was challenged. He has often appeared in national and international TV and radio programmes on home education and is regularly quoted in newspaper and magazine articles. He presented a weekly radio programme on education for several years.