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  • ‘TAIN’T SO Interesting developments

    Filed at 9:00 am under by dcobranchi

    ‘TAIN’T SO Interesting developments on the other side of the Atlantic. On Brian’s EdBlog, Julius claimed that “Home education in England and Wales (and to a lesser extent, Scotland) is probably easier than almost anywhere else in the Western World. By ‘easier’ I don’t mean that British children are genetically predisposed to learning at home. I mean that the State puts very few obstacles in the way of British home educators.” In the comments section, Michael Peach pointed to a draft of guidelines for how their LEA’s (apparently some kind of truant officer) are supposed to deal with homeschoolers. After reading through the guidelines, all I can say is “BOO!! HISS!!”

    Monitoring Agreement LEAs must investigate the nature of the education being provided for a child when they become aware that the child:

    · Has been de-registered from mainstream school;

    · Is not in school;

    · Is not registered as being home-educated, and

    · Is not registered as being home educated and has a statement of SEN. [that it, is a “Special Needs” student]

    The Department expects LEAs to:

    · Make initial contact with the home educating parents;

    · Review the education being provided;

    · Identify support required.

    The initial contact should be supportive of parents who have made the decision to educate their children at home, guidance should for instance emphasise that: “the Authority will be pleased to support parents who opt for home education once it is satisfied that adequate provision is being made.”

    Access to home

    There is no obligation for parents to give the LEA access to their home and parents may choose to meet an LEA officer at home or a neutral location (e.g. a library), Frequency After 1st contact, when LEAs are satisfied with the education being provided for the child, they will then decide on the frequency of follow-up visits, most likely on an annual basis. However, LEAs may increase the frequency of their visits if not fully assured of the appropriateness of the education being provided.

    LEAs should inform the parent of a home-educated child of a visit well in advance, and in writing.

    These are just awful and, if enacted in the US, would easily place right up (down) there with Pennsylvania as some of the worst laws in the country. Sorry, Julius, here’s how homeschooling works in Delaware: Each October we tell the state the names of the kids and their ages. Each July we tell the state we homeschooled for 180 days. That’s it. No tests. No visits. No other requirements at all. And, there are several states that have even better regs.

    I hope homeschoolers (“home eddors” over there) do everything they can to block these proposed regs from being enacted.

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