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Regulations On The Home Schooling Of Your Child

By: Angela Armes - Updated: 25 Apr 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Law Parents Regulations Home Education

There are around 50,000-80,000 home educated children in the UK. Home education can be highly fulfilling for children and can lead to children achieving better than average qualifications. Having been home educated does not prevent a young person from going on to university and having fulfilling careers. Indeed in the US, where home education is more commonplace, many universities and employers seek out home educated young people in their recruitment efforts.

There are a number of reasons why a parent might want to educate their child at home. Some parents opt to home-school because of lifestyle or family reasons, while others do so because of negative school experiences like Bullying, Expulsion, difficulty getting a child into the school of choice, or some problem specific to an individual school.

Socialisation

The main question raised about home education relates to socialisation. With so many home-educated young people in the UK there are now many local support groups all over the UK. These groups often hold regular meetings and are frequently networked with each other through the internet. Home-educated students rarely find socialisation to be an issue.

The law

Under Section 7 of the 1996 education act, parents are responsible for ensuring that their children receive an education suitable to their age ability and aptitude, as well as any special needs he or she may have. The following home-schooling rules apply in England and Wales:

  • You do not need the permission of an LEA to home educate a child (unless the child attends a special needs school)
  • You do not have to hold any particular qualifications to home educate your child
  • There are no predetermined hours or times that you must tutor your child at home
  • You do not have to conform to the National Curriculum
  • You can home educate a child with special needs
  • Home educated children are not required to undertake examinations or SATs

Your Local Education Authority

When considering home education it is wise to consider all of your options carefully and discuss the idea with your child. If you have specific issues with the school, you should consider discussing these with the school and possibly with the Local Children's Services (LEA).

If your child is currently in school, you are required to inform your child's head teacher in writing before you withdraw your child. The head teacher will then inform the (LEA) and remove your child from the school's register. There is no legal requirement for you to allow the local authority access to either your home or child.

The Education Welfare Service (EWS) will almost certainly make contact with you to ensure that you are meeting your duty to provide an education to your child. However, you should be allowed some short period to settle in to your new routine before having to supply detailed information on your provision.

If they are unhappy about your provision, they will write to you to explain their concerns and ask for further information. In rare cases, if the local authority remains unsatisfied with your provision, they can issue a School Attendance Order which requires you to either provide further evidence of education or enrol your child at a school named in the order within 15 days. Such an order can be challenged in court. In all the actions they take the Local Authority must act in the best interests of the child.

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After many disagreements with my children's school I have been home educating since jan 18. I have asked repeatedly for my children's school work so it was an easy transition for them and me to continue their education. I am about to have a stage 2 meeting with the school governors as the schools responcewas to photocopy random and illegible copies of my children's work, which upset my children greatly. My question is who owns my children's school work? as the schools state it is within their discretion but I believe they are being deliberately obstructive. If anyone can give me a legal president then I would be grateful. Many thanks
Karen - 25-Apr-18 @ 11:55 PM
Hello I myself have a medical condition with my tummy that causes terrible stresses every morning, sometimes I struggle to leave the house in the morning.I do manage to get my child to school however on occasions I have been a few minutes late. There was only one day I could not get her in at all due to illness of mine so I decided to keep her at home.The learning support teacher called round to 'help' and for the next few weeks along with my own parents they got my child into school whilst I was trying a new medication. my parents don't live nearby so its not realistic for them to take her everyday. plus I am not comfortable with other people taking my child to school, as I want to experience it.I have been bombarded with comments from the school such as you will be fined everytime you are late, you will face prosecution and we need to monitor Isabella to make sure she is not effected. (I am not entirely sure what they mean here - I have a medical condition with my tummy no other issues) My husband has found a new job so he can be at home twice a week and the plan was that he would take her in two days and I can do every other day although it will be very difficult for me. However we received a letter again stating if late or absent we could face prosecution and the social services could be informed. It all seems a little over the top reaction for the only issue is a personal one where as I have difficulty in the morning. My husband and I are thinking seriously of educating my child and her sister at home to remove the stress of not being able to get there and then the threats from the school.I do have guilt feelings that I am taking my daughter away from school but am confident in my ability to provide a better education for her. I just wonder if parents health is a valid reason to homeschool? I am healthy and competent in every other way, just chronic tummy issues that worsen under stress and anxiety. Any advice would be much appreciated.
Positiveparent - 20-Apr-18 @ 10:34 AM
I want to home school my 11 year old because of recurring difficulties with her school. She lives with me because her father and I separated 7 years ago.He wants her to remain at school.Can he prevent me from home schooling her? I would like his support but do not think it will be forthcoming.
Kat - 27-Mar-18 @ 6:04 PM
Hi. My y8 child has autism & Is not coping in school. She has been bullied throughout primary & secondary school. She is unable to cope academically socially or emotionally. If I home school her can she still have an EHCP?She has an opportunity to begin vocational training with horses (she has ability in equine skills) School won't allow her to access this alongside a reduced timetable. Is my only option to home School alongside this vocational training?
Scorpio - 24-Mar-18 @ 4:08 PM
I’m looking to home school my daughter due to concent battle with the school, my younger daughter was diagnosed with autism 2 years ago no ecp in place or any help offered from school just they don’t see it and it must be something at happens at home, they cal soical service on me a number of times when they came out they stated my children are not in need and this is between me and the school, so after months of being upset tearful and feeling like I’m getting no we’re we add a meeting today in which one of the teachers stated that now she been diagnosed she won’t be able to achieve higher education join the army or get a good career to which then went on to state she wasn’t trained or knows how to deal with autistic behaviour we’re are my rights in moving schools or home school really need help
Kim - 21-Mar-18 @ 7:10 PM
My daughter really struggled to fit in at times had no friends this is at senior school she was anxious, stressed and unhappy. I really wanted to home school but she stuck it out at school went through the bad patch or a dark time and came out the other side.didnt happen over night.Some times we can't protect are children from hurt of real life. I spoke to school and kept them imformed not that it Always helped. But sticking it out was horrible at times but it helped her to become a stronger independent person. That taught her she can deal with different situations.Went onto college and is doing great. There is light at end of tunnel. I know this is not the case for everyone i judge no one
Lucy - 12-Mar-18 @ 10:17 PM
What’s with the retarded comments on this article? It literally tells you all the basics you need to know about the requirements for home schooling. If you can't read and understand this basic and straightforward article then please think twice about trying to home school your poor kids: or they will end up dumber than you are.
AJ - 8-Mar-18 @ 12:40 PM
Hi. My daughter is 14 and very unhappy and anxious at school. She has pleaded with me for homeschooling. The problem is, I am a single parent and have to work so cannot home school her myself and I have limited funds for tutors etc. is it legal for a 14 year old to tutor herself (with my guidance) if I got her all the necessary books, curriculum etc? Not ideal, but if it came to it, is it possible?
Murphy - 23-Feb-18 @ 10:49 AM
This question has already been asked but no reply. My daughter is 9n a main stream school year 6 and she is becoming increasingly anxious and angry the school are just not supporting her . My question is can I pull her out and home school but she still goes to secondary school as we have applied to a specialised school (she has a ehcp) I want to know if I can just help her by pulling her out or fight the school
Tue - 19-Feb-18 @ 5:20 PM
Is it legal for me to be home schooling my child at 17 as have just be dignoswd With learning disabilities and servers panic attacks with being away from Home
Elain - 12-Feb-18 @ 10:31 AM
My daughter is 16 and attends a health needs school , she has been provisionally accepted for a apprenticeship can she leave and start this before June as she will not be sitting her exams
Nick - 6-Feb-18 @ 6:47 PM
Michelle - Your Question:
Hi I have 3 children in total but 2 older boys age 13yrs and 15yrs have only been at there new high school a yr. Youngest fine but just recently ive been bombarded with fone call after fone call about rumours apparently going around about my ealdest whos 15yrs. Ive had meetings etc and the school can never ansew my questions. But the school say theres no evidence just rumours. Certain teachers involved only ever hear these rumours but are targetting my son for nothing. Hes been pushed out of main school and is in there Gateway for help with his education (this is there excuss) ive even kept him in to illiminate my son from any more rumours. He doesnt have a mobile either. But these rumours keep happening. My sons anxious and has been off now 5days (his attendance is 99%) these certain teachers have taking these rumours to another level. Im now considering homeschooling. Hes in yr 10 age 15yrs, 16yrs in sept 2018. Does he have to have set work? Or learn anything online for his age group? Who do we inform of our desision? Thanku

Our Response:
Please read the above article for answers to your questions. He doesn't have to have setwork...as the article says "parents are responsible for ensuring that their children receive an education suitable to their age ability and aptitude, as well as any special needs he or she may have". The article also states: "If your child is currently in school, you are required to inform your child's head teacher in writing before you withdraw your child."
LawAndParents - 6-Feb-18 @ 3:15 PM
Hi i have 3 children in total but 2 older boys age 13yrs and 15yrs have only been at there new high school a yr. Youngest fine but just recently ive been bombarded with fone call after fone call about rumours apparently going around about my ealdest whos 15yrs. Ive had meetings etc and the school can never ansew my questions. But the school say theres no evidence just rumours . Certain teachers involved only ever hear these rumours but are targetting my son for nothing. Hes been pushed out of main school and is in there Gateway for help with his education (this is there excuss) ive even kept him in to illiminate my son from any more rumours. He doesnt have a mobile either. But these rumours keep happening. My sons anxious and has been off now 5days (his attendance is 99%) these certain teachers have taking these rumours to another level. Im now considering homeschooling. Hes in yr 10 age 15yrs, 16yrs in sept 2018. Does he have to have set work? Or learn anything online for his age group? Who do we inform of our desision? Thanku
Michelle - 6-Feb-18 @ 10:01 AM
Golding - Your Question:
Hi I have recently removed my children from their primary school due to some serious issues which have occured. My youngest child got straight into her new school withon days however my 8yr old daughter will need to remain on the list until a space becomes available for her. Because of this I am home schooling her! I went to the old school to collect my daughters excercise books so that I am able to see where she has learnt to and where I can continue to teach her (something visual that will help her proceed her learning at home) after being told I could collect the books, and then going to collect them I was approached by the deputy head, which may I add I am currently on the stage 3 complaint process which involves her, she approached me and told me ‘they are not allowed to release these books mid term’. so basically they know I would like these books to benefit my daughter progressing in her education at home but they would rather refuse to give them to me and just keep them in a tray in the classroom where they will not be benefitting anyone! They are MY daughters books, do I have any rights on voluntarily withdrawing the books in the best interests of my daughters education

Our Response:
They don't actually belong to your daughter, they belong to the school, which is perfectly within its rights to keep hold of them unfortunately for you.
LawAndParents - 5-Feb-18 @ 3:23 PM
Hi, my daughter is in p7 and is getting bullied by her friends she has no one and her self confidence and work is suffering, could I home school her until secondary school, so it would only be for a few months?
Gemz - 3-Feb-18 @ 5:04 PM
Hi i have recently removed my children from their primary school due to some serious issues which have occured. My youngest child got straight into her new school withon days however my 8yr old daughter will need to remain on the list until a space becomes available for her. Because of this i am home schooling her! I went to the old school to collect my daughters excercise books so that i am able to see where she has learnt to and where i can continue to teach her (something visual that will help her proceed her learning at home) after being told i could collect the books, and then going to collect them i was approached by the deputy head, which may i add i am currently on the stage 3 complaint process which involves her, she approached me and told me ‘they are not allowed to release these books mid term’.... so basically they know i would like these books to benefit my daughter progressing in her education at home but they would rather refuse to give them to me and just keep them in a tray in the classroom where they will not be benefitting anyone! They are MY daughters books, do i have any rights on voluntarily withdrawing the books in the best interests of my daughters education
Golding - 3-Feb-18 @ 10:38 AM
Hi iam thinking of moving from my area to Chorley and my oldest son is struggling at school how do i go about geting him home schooled pls
Dee - 30-Jan-18 @ 5:16 PM
Upset- Your Question:
My 2 children aged 15 and 12 have just had a terrible ordeal while walking home from school with me to cut a long story short there were several fights to which we were followed home my youngest child has adhd and can't keep her mout shut I am so upset and wish to take them out of school because they don't want to go and I don't want them to please help how do I go about it and can I take them out

Our Response:
Who were the fights involving? Sorry it's not at all clear what happened and whether your children were involved in the fight etc
LawAndParents - 23-Jan-18 @ 9:50 AM
My 2 children aged 15 and 12 have just had a terrible ordeal while walking home from school with me to cut a long story short there were several fights to which we were followed home my youngest child has adhdand can't keep her mout shut I am so upset and wish to take them out of school because they don't want to go and I don't want them to please help how do I go about it and can I take them out
Upset - 22-Jan-18 @ 7:00 PM
My daughter is waiting for a managed move due to her present school failing in their duties. Can she be home schooled till this move as we do not want her back at this school?
Ricky - 15-Jan-18 @ 3:44 PM
Lou - Your Question:
HiMy son is home schooled and will be 16 in February. Can I legally stop his homeschooling after his birthday or do I need to continue it until the end of the official school year ?When can he start an apprenticeship? Thank you x

Our Response:
Compulsory education ends on the last Friday in June if a child will turn 16 before the 31st August). Apprenticeships do not usually commence until the September following the end of year 11.
LawAndParents - 10-Jan-18 @ 12:47 PM
Jim - Your Question:
My ex partner has decided that she is going to withdraw my 5year old autistic son from main stream school and I am not convinced that this is beneficial for him but is there anything I can actually do about it? In my opinion she has no justifiable reason to remove him from school as he has all the support services he needs in his current school and his social communication has also improved vastly since he attended and I feel it is unfair to take him away from all the relationships he's built now over simply not liking the staff at the school when my son seems more than settled there and with those people! I may add that educational assessments carried out by the local authority have proved that my son has learned and retained information since starting school so again I see no need to remove him from the environment when he is learning.

Our Response:
As his father with parental responsibility you have an equal say inimportant events in your son's life. So while your ex can make the decision to remove your son from school, you are equally entitled to challenge this decision. If you feel your son would suffer as a result of removing him from the school, you could consider applying forProhibited Steps Order (PSO) from the courts.
LawAndParents - 10-Jan-18 @ 12:25 PM
Daze - Your Question:
I currently have a social worker involved with my children due to my ex partners violent conduct. The supervision orders in place until March 2018, after that social services should no longer see us once a month or have any involvement. If I decide to withdraw my daughter from school in order that home educate her can the school and social workers prevent me from doing so if they want to if they can't see our point of view?

Our Response:
You must inform the school if you want to remove your child from school.As long as your child is not under a School Attendance Order, or registered with certain Special Educations Needs (SEN), you should not need agreement from the local authority.
LawAndParents - 9-Jan-18 @ 11:39 AM
I currently have a social worker involved with my children due to my ex partners violent conduct. The supervision orders in place until March 2018, after that social services should no longer see us once a month or have any involvement. If I decide to withdraw my daughter from school in order that home educate her can the school and social workers prevent me from doing so if they want to if they can't see our point of view?
Daze - 8-Jan-18 @ 12:23 AM
Hi My son is home schooled and will be 16 in February.Can I legally stop his homeschooling after his birthday or do I need to continue it until the end of the official school year ? When can he start an apprenticeship? Thank you x
Lou - 7-Jan-18 @ 10:51 PM
My ex partner has decided that she is going to withdraw my 5year old autistic son from main stream school and I am not convinced that this is beneficial for him but is there anything I can actually do about it? In my opinion she has no justifiable reason to remove him from school as he has all the support services he needs in his current school and his social communication has also improved vastly since he attended and I feel it is unfair to take him away from all the relationships he's built now over simply not liking the staff at the school when my son seems more than settled there and with those people! I may add that educational assessments carried out by the local authority have proved that my son has learned and retained information since starting school so again I see no need to remove him from the environment when he is learning.
Jim - 7-Jan-18 @ 9:28 PM
Hello I am a single mother of two aged 5&2. I currently live in a area which is actively affected by universal credit. I am looking into homeschooling my children I have done a lot of research and can't see anything that states if universal credit will still pay my housing costs if I'm not looking for work, as I will be a full time .mother homeschooling. I know I will be initiated to child benefit not sure about child tax credit as I am in receipt of universal credit. It cost the tax payer less if my children where homeschooled but I guess that's how the government make money so they give you a unreasonable ultimatum if you home sch you will get no help so will have to work which means you can't home sch or you can send them to sch and they will pay all these extra benefits. When you look at it for what it really is you see first hand the government and local authorities are just business and we are the customer. If we where all to homeschool they would lose nearly 60%ofthere income the other 40% is on parking tickets of course.so my question is if I home school my children how will I pay my rent? Is there any grants or scheme available? Thank you for you time Kind regards
Cash - 6-Jan-18 @ 3:06 AM
Traben - Your Question:
Hi, my son has autism and started secondary school in September. He has been bullied since starting and today he actually got punched in the face! He’s so anxious about going back to school as the school have done nothing to stop the bullying. Can I pull my son out of his school and home tutor him temporarily until I find a suitable special needs school for him?

Our Response:
Unless he's registered with a special educational need, you can home school him. You will need to have plans in case you are not able to find an alternative place elsewhere. Talk to your local education authority about it.
LawAndParents - 15-Dec-17 @ 12:36 PM
My concern with home education is that there seems to be no checksmade to confirm or otherwise that the child is being Given a suitable education. Is my concern justified?
Nigel - 13-Dec-17 @ 11:48 PM
Hi, my son has autism and started secondary school in September. He has been bullied since starting and today he actually got punched in the face! He’s so anxious about going back to school as the school have done nothing to stop the bullying . Can I pull my son out of his school and home tutor him temporarily until I find a suitable special needs school for him?
Traben - 12-Dec-17 @ 9:07 PM
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