Parent Report Deemed Sufficient
“Due to a personal bereavement Aisha submits only a report to the local authority. This report sets out Saad’s educational programme and progress being made …” Case study 1 presents a home educator with a very structured approach. In the past she and her son have met the local authority and shown examples of work. Exceptionally this year the home education can be approved with “only a report”. Scroll down to see my comments.
Are Case Studies Helpful
The consultation document says “We have updated the EHE guidance for local authorities to include case studies on EHE topics that can sometimes cause misinterpretation and result in queries being raised to the Department. Through these case studies, we have tried to clarify a few factors within the process of EHE”
The consultation asks whether you think the case studies are helpful. I would say it depends what you mean by helpful. If you are a local authority seeking justification for annual monitoring visits then I assume you will find case study 1 very helpful in bolstering your approach because virtually no-one will tick all the boxes in case study 1 that made “only a report” acceptable.
Remember though that the Department interprets helpful as meaning fewer queries because the guidance will have made things clearer. Considered in this light, adding all the details in the case study make it the OPPOSITE of helpful because so many people will be wanting the Department to adjudicate where there is a difference of opinion in all the scenarios which do NOT exactly mirror the case study.
Relevant Consultation Questions
- Q28 Have you found the inclusion of case studies in the EHE guidance for local authorities helpful?
- Q29 Are there other issues you would like to see us address through case studies or further information that illustrates your answer above?
The Department for Education plans to issue new non-statutory guidance on home education and has published a draft for comment. The deadline for giving your views is January 18th 2024, more information here including a link to all the documents https://edyourself.org/2023-consultation-revised-ehe-guidance/
- This child has always been home educated ie not been deregistered from school. This could be seen as a “positive” reason for home educating rather than “negative” due to problems at school
- The family is known to use a structured approach with a timetable including work set plus lessons in individual subjects
- The parent has previously provided examples of the child’s work (unclear whether this is physical samples of work completed by the child or whether examples are described in detail by the parent)
- The parent has previously agreed to home visits [“meetings” in the plural, so given that the child is 9, possibly every year since age 5?] where the LA officer has also been able to see the child
- The LA has never expressed any concerns or doubts about the provision in the past
- The case study refers to “the following year” as though the same level of engagement is expected every year
- This time the parent is allowed to send in a detailed written report which “sets out Said’s educational programme and progress being made” rather than the home visits etc as in the past
- This hypothetical LA “prefers to receive information that clearly demonstrates that the work is taking place” [home visits, meeting the child, discussing work done] and this preference means there have to be SPECIAL REASONS before a written report is EVENTUALLY allowed – remember that the heading for the case study is “A parent report deemed sufficient to assess suitability”
- Case Study 1 can be found on page 23 of the draft guidance for LAs