Table of Contents
- How Many Children Are Home Educated in Wales
- Summary Home Education Law in Wales
- Summary Welsh Guidelines
- Home Education Guidelines Differ in England and Wales
- Children Missing Education Wales
- Safeguarding in Education Consultation Launched August 2013
- Deregistering a Child from School in Wales
- Current Regulations for SEN
- Flexischooling in Wales
- What Estyn Looks For When Inspecting Local Authorities
Home Education in Wales
Plans to Change Law on Home Education in Wales Dropped
Education (Wales) Bill July 2013 no mention of home education BBC confirms plans dropped (January 2013) Leighton Andrews statement backing off change, December 2012 Read more about what was proposed Consultation Safeguarding in Education 2013
How Many Children Are Home Educated in Wales?
August 2013 publication: http://wales.gov.uk/topics/statistics/headlines/schools2013/pupils-educated-other-than-at-school-2012-13/?lang=en 1,103 children home educated in Wales during 2012-13 Anglesey 27, Gwynnedd 55, Conwy 58, Denbighshire 43, Flintshire 51, Wrexham 21, Powys 101, Ceredigion 122, Pembrokeshire 92, Carmarthenshire 74, Swansea 69, Neath Port Talbot 41, Bridgend 38, The Vale of Glamorgan 32, Rhondda Cynon Taff 51, Merthyr Tydfil 14, Caerphilly -, Blaenau Gwent 12, Torfaen 21, Monmouthshire 28, Newport 24, Cardiff 129
Proposals to Cut Number of Local Education Authorities in Wales by ThirdA consultation closed in September 2013, see the consultation response form which itemises all the recommendations and asks for comments on each.
Summary Home Education Law in Wales
The principle primary legislation which applies to elective home education is the Education Act 1996 and the Education and Inspection Act 2006. Section 7 of the Education Act (England and Wales) 1996 states that "the parent of every child of compulsory school age shall cause him to receive efficient full-time education suitable — (1) to his age, ability and aptitude, and (2) to any special educational needs he may have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise."
Section 4 of the Education and Inspection Act 2006 deals with Children Missing Education and introduces Section 436A into the 1996 Education Act. Scroll down or click here to read more about Children Missing Education law and guidance for Wales. The procedure to be followed when a parent takes a child out of school for home education (known as deregistration) is covered by Pupil Registration Regulations. Scroll down or click here to read more about deregistration.
Section 7 of the Education Act 1996 (England and Wales) states that the parent of every child of compulsory school age shall cause him to receive efficient full-time education suitable - (a)to his age, ability and aptitude, and (b)to any special educational needs he may have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise.
Summary Main Points Welsh Guidelines
In 2006 the Welsh Assembly Government published Elective Home Education Guidelines (14 pages) as part of a much larger document covering Inclusion and Pupil Support http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/schoolshome/pupilsupport/inclusionpupilsupportguidance/section6/?lang=en
Key points from the Welsh Home Education Guidelines are: assume efficient and suitable unless evidence to contrary; duty to serve School Attendance Order; seek to build effective relationships; named contact familiar with home education; LAs to post information to parents where not meeting in person; no legal framework for regular monitoring; make contact on annual basis; seek agreement to see provision first hand without undue pressure; no right to insist on access to the home; reports, samples of work, alternative venue; expected characteristics of provision; respecting parent's philosophy.
Home Education Guidelines Differ in England and Wales
There are a number of significant differences between the Government Guidelines for England and for Wales.
- Welsh Guidelines specifically state that the authority should assume efficient educational provision is taking place, which is suitable for the child, unless there is evidence to the contrary.
- Welsh Guidelines say the law doesn't specifically require the authority to investigate home education.
- Welsh Guidelines say the authority should make annual contact with the home educating family.
Wales: Children Missing Education
"Children Missing Education" in both England and Wales comes under section 436a of the Education Act England and Wales 1996 which states:
(1)A local education authority must make arrangements to enable them to establish (so far as it is possible to do so) the identities of children in their area who are of compulsory school age but—
(a)are not registered pupils at a school, and
(b)are not receiving suitable education otherwise than at a school.
(2)In exercising their functions under this section a local education authority must have regard to any guidance given from time to time by the Secretary of State.
(3)In this Chapter, "suitable education", in relation to a child, means efficient full-time education suitable to his age, ability and aptitude and to any special educational needs he may have."
CME Guidance in Wales (April 2010) differs from the CME Guidance in England (November 2013). The Welsh CME Guidance section on elective home education is largely taken from the 2006 Home Education Guidelines for Wales.
Safeguarding in Education Consultation Launched August 2013
Deregistration: How Soon Should School Notify Local Authority? Government Guidance 2010
The Education (Pupil Registration) (Wales) Regulations 2010 say the child's name should be deleted from the roll BEFORE informing the authority.
(3) When the name of a pupil has been deleted from the admission register in accordance with regulation 8(1)(c), (d), (g), (i) or (m), the proprietor must make a return to the local authority giving the full name and address of that pupil within the ten school days immediately following the date on which the pupil’s name was so deleted.Pupil Registration Regulations Wales 2010
Current Regulations for SEN
England and Wales each have their own Special Educational Needs Code of Practice which do differ in some respects, but which have identical paragraphs dealing with education otherwise than at school in cases where the child has a statement of SEN. The Welsh and English Home Education Guidelines contain exactly the same information about home educating children with a statement of SEN.
Special Educational Needs Code of Practice (Wales) 2004
8:95 Section 7 of the Education Act 1996 recognises parents’ right to choose to educate their child at home. Such arrangements are described as ‘education otherwise than at school’. In such cases, if the child has a statement of special educational needs, it remains the LEA’s duty to ensure that the child’s needs are met. The statement must remain in force and the LEA must ensure that parents can make suitable, provision, including provision for the child’s special educational needs. If the parent’s arrangements are suitable the LEA are relieved of their duty to arrange the provision specified in the statement. If, however, the parents’ attempt to educate the child at home results in provision which falls short of meeting the child’s needs, then the parents are not making ‘suitable arrangements’ and the LEA could not conclude that they were absolved of their responsibility to arrange the provision in the statement. Even if the LEA is satisfied, the LEA remains under a duty to maintain the child’s statement and to review it annually, following the procedures set out in Chapter Nine. 8:96 In such situations section 324 (4A) of the Education Act 1996 does not require the name of a school to be specified in Part 4 of the statement. Part 4 should state the type of school the LEA consider appropriate but go on to say that: "parents have made their own arrangements under section 7 of the Education Act 1996." The statement can also specify any provision that the LEA have agreed to make under section 319 to help parents provide suitable education for their child at home." p.111
Flexischooling in Wales
Code B is to be used where a pupil is Educated off-site (not dual registration) and is engaged in approved educational activity. In Wales this could cover the situation where a headteacher has agreed a flexischooling arrangement with the parent of a home-educated child.
What Estyn Looks For When Inspecting Local Authorities re Elective Home EducationThe 2010 guidance issued by the Welsh inspectorate, Estyn says that "They should evaluate how effective the authority’s procedures are to monitor the quality of education of children and young people educated outside school, including children educated at home by their parents. This could include an evaluation of whether the authority provides helpful guidance for parents educating their children at home when requested to do so." (page 30)
Related PagesHome Education in Wales
Consultation Safeguarding Children in Education (Wales) 2013
Briefing on Proposals
Freedom of Information Requests for the Consultation
Consultation Response 2012