Update June 2011

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A Message From Fiona Nicholson at EdYourself

This will be the last update before the Summer holidays. I wanted quickly to flag up a number of ongoing issues and recent events which will have an impact on home educating families. Firstly, the DfE's consultation on the Special Educational Needs Green Paper closes this Thursday June 30th. As you may know, the Green Paper suggested that local authorities use their powers under the Education Act to support home educated children with a statement of SEN and also those who had formerly been on School Action Plus, but nothing was said about funding. The Green Paper also proposes to scrap statements and replace them with Single Assssment Health, Education and Care Plans for "the most vulnerable." Another plan is to have compulsory mediation before a case gets to tribunal and a third idea is to introduce Personal Budgets for families where children have a Single Assessment. DfE is currently considering bids for pathfinder pilot areas to begin in September 2011. I have put together a page of information and links about the SEN Green Paper consultation, with a suggestion that people send a brief email directly to the consultation team making a few points about key issues rather than fill out the 60 question online consultation form.

June 26th: SEN Green Paper Consultation Ends Thursday June 30th: Tips on how to make response

New page to aid in making a response to the consultation on the Special Educational Needs Green Paper. Includes information on the new Health, Education and Care Plans, pathfinder areas and personal budgets and tribunals plus Useful Links

Surrey County Council Home Education Policy Consultation

Surrey is to be commended for opening this Draft Home Education Policy to public consultation after meetings with home educating stakeholders. The draft policy is also admirably concise! Consultation runs till end September.

June 22nd: Legal Aid retained for Special Needs Tribunals but excluded for Welfare Rights

A list of excluded services may be found on page 115-6 (Schedule 1 Civil Legal Services Part 1 Services) of the Legal Aid and Sentencing Bill 2011. Information about SEN tribunals may be found on page 118 (Schedule 1 Civil Legal Services Part 3 Advocacy)

June 18th: Notes from Flexischooling Conference June 17th

At the flexischooling conference in London hosted by CfBT Educational Trust to launch the Hollinsclough Pilot Report, the audience included local authority home education advisors, council academics, home educating parents wanting to find out more about the flexischooling option together with heads and governors of small rural primary schools who are in the early stages of devising their own flexi-school options. On behalf of CfBT Education Trust, Paul Gutherson carried out a Rapid Evidence Review to cover issues identified by the advisory group as potentially significant obstacles and issues, with the aim of establishing a workable model of flexi-schooling that met both statutory requirements and the needs of families. Conference delegates felt it was important to have some form of contract between the school and the family to clarify roles and responsibilities for all parties. Flexischooling is not limited to primary schools; we are aware of a very few secondary schools where home-educated young people attended part time under a flexischool arrangement in order to take GCSEs. Read more here

June 18th: New Search Facility for Ed Yourself

A quick plug for the new improved search facility on this website devised yesterday by my home educated son Theo. Entering a phrase such as "leaving age" into the search box will now return matching titles and matching content in separate columns. Please give it a try!

More Home Education News

May 2011 Newsletter

EdYourself posts on the News Page about political events which may have an impact on home education. News items are flagged up on EdYourself Twitter EdYourself and Fiona Nicholson are not found on Facebook or LinkedIn.

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Link Reference

This article is http://edyourself.org/articles/June2011newsletter.php. The following links to other websites are contained in the article, displayed as citations to aid you in printing the document.

  1. Surrey County Council Home Education Policy Consultation http://www.swsurrey-home-ed.co.uk/wordpress/2011/06/22/consultation-on-new-surrey-county-council-ehe
  2. Draft Home Education Policy http://www.swsurrey-home-ed.co.uk/resources/draftehepolicy.pdf
  3. Legal Aid and Sentencing Bill 2011 http://image.guardian.co.uk/sys-files/Politics/documents/2011/06/21/Legalaidsentencingandpunishmento
  4. my home educated son Theo. http://tpn.lowtech.org/
  5. June 6th: Surrey CC Home Education Focus Group Recommendations, Cabinet Office Response + Comments http://www.swsurrey-home-ed.co.uk/wordpress/2011/06/06/the-scc-ehe-policy-consulation/
  6. EdYourself Twitter http://twitter.com/edyourself