You’re running out of time to respond to the consultation.
The consultation is seeking “the views of home educating families, groups representing home educating families, local authorities, other agencies involved in the provision of services for children, and the public“. Home educators are involved, engaged and responding, but we’re just a vociferous minority, apparently.
Now non home educating bloggers (that’d be the aforementioned public I guess) are noticing it too. Try Potty Diaries, who’s jerusalem is this anyway if you don’t believe me. Because this isn’t just about home education. It’s not even primarily about home education.
This is about losing your freedom to choose the form your children’s education might take. If you can afford to pay, you can choose private education of course, even new labour hasn’t decided to wade in there just yet. But if you can’t afford to pay, or you just don’t want to, perhaps you are philosophically opposed to school, or perhaps you’ve tried it and it really doesn’t suit your child, at the moment you can home educate. And you can choose what form that education takes.
That’s your right, more than that, that’s your responsibility as a parent, to ensure that your child receives an education suitable to their age, ability and aptitude. And you know your child better than anyone else, so you are best suited to choose what form that education should take.
How would you feel if you chose to exercise that right to educate otherwise than by attendance at school and were told actually, you need to register. Annually. And we’ll have right of access to your home, and we’ll interview your child alone, to check that you’re doing what they want, and that you’re not abusing your child. Can you imagine being suspected of abuse just because you’re choosing to do something a little different to the average? Would you be happy about it? If the school has let you down, would you be happy to let just any old Local Authority employee into your house?
Would it keep your child safe?
Can you imagine that they are going to stop with home education? They’ve already stuck their nose into childcare – every childcare environment for children under 5 (that’s under mandatory education age) now has to follow the same curriculum. So even though these children are not legally required to be educated, the government has decided what form that education will take, unless they are at home with their parents. Where will it go next?
It isn’t, and shouldn’t be, up to the state to determine the form of education a child receives, it’s up to the parent. If you want to keep that freedom, to have that choice, please, please, support home educators and fill in the consultation. You’ve got til 23.45 on Monday 19th October.