Educating your child at home is also known as Elective Home Education (EHE) and is where parents provide education for their children at home instead of sending them to school. It is not home tuition provided by the local authority (LA) or when the LA provides education other than at school.
Deciding whether to educate your child at home can be a difficult decision to make. Parents who educate their children at home must legally provide them with a ‘suitable education’. This means that the child must have a full-time education that is suitable for their age, ability and aptitude and that meets any special educational needs they might have.
If you decide to educate your child at home you must inform your child’s school. The Education and Early Years Service will then send you a form to complete and return. Once we receive your completed form, an inspector and our City of London educational psychologist will write to you to make an appointment to visit you to discuss your arrangements.
Elective home education process
The law states that all children of statutory school age must receive suitable education.
The LA (City of London Corporation) has a duty to provide access to curriculum and inspection services for parents to offer support, work in partnership and establish that parents are providing a suitable education.
- The parent is responsible for ensuring their child receives education.
- The local authority would encourage all children to attend and receive education in a school.
- A parent is entitled to choose to educate their child other than by the local authority provision.
- A parent may choose an independent school or may decide to provide the education themselves or by others.
If a parent chooses to make arrangements for their child other than at school the following procedure will take place:
If your child is on a roll at a school you must advise the head teacher in writing of your intention to educate other than at school. Additionally, in the letter you would be requesting that your child’s name is removed from the school roll. The school will then notify the Education and Early Years Service at the City of London Corporation.
If your child is not on a school roll but they are of statutory school age you are advised to notify the City of London Corporation of your intention to educate other than at school.
In The City of London you need to notify the Education and Early Years Service on 020 7332 1002 or firstname.lastname@example.org
After notification you will receive a form to complete and return to the Education and Early Years Service (see below), which details the arrangements you have made for providing your child with suitable education.
On returning the form to the Education and Early Years Service:
- You will receive information about educating your child other than at school. This information will include useful names and addresses of organisations independent of the LA.
- Arrangements will be made for curriculum and inspection services to be available to you.
An inspector and our City of London Educational Psychologist will then write to you to make an appointment to visit you to discuss your arrangements.
The inspector and City of London educational psychologist will advise, support and review your child’s educational provision. The inspector will compile a report based on their visit and any other information available. In the report, the inspector will state whether they judge the education provided is satisfactory or not.
If the education is deemed satisfactory a review date will be arranged and your child’s name will be placed on the School Pupil Database, which currently holds details of all children educated other than in school.
If the education is deemed unsatisfactory a review visit will be arranged by the inspector.
You would be allowed up to three months to make amendments to your arrangements should you wish to continue to pursue educating your child other than at school.
A further visit (within three months) would then be arranged by the inspector to review the arrangements.
If the arrangements are still deemed unsatisfactory, the Education and Early Years Service will advise you to find a school place within 15 school days. If no school place is identified by the you, the Education and Early Years Service will name a school and begin the process of issuing a School Attendance Order. Failure to comply with a School Attendance Order may result in prosecution.
Principles of elective home education
- All of our ways of working will be in line with Department for Education and LA guidelines.
- Procedures should be clear, consistent, non-intrusive and timely in order to provide a good foundation for the development of trusting relationships.
- We wish to work with parents to develop effective partnerships,
- To review our procedures annually involving appropriate officers, home education organisations and parents. Any complaints will be listened to and handled sensitively.
- The senior officer with responsibility for elective home education policy and procedures will ensure that all officers who have contact with home educating families have received appropriate training.
- The LA recognises that there are many approaches to educational provision, not just a “school at home” model. What is suitable for one child may not be for another but all children should be involved in a learning process.
- The degree of contact with specific home education families will be dependant on individual circumstances and/or the suitability of education being received.
- In terms of the monitoring process, the LA recognises that legally it does not have the right of access to the child’s home although a home visit is the preferred option. Parents may choose to have a meeting outside the home or to submit a written report.
- For children with a statement of special educational needs, this will be reviewed annually following procedures set out in chapter 9 of the SEN Code of Practice.
- The LA will provide written information and website links for prospective and existing electively home educating parents setting out the legal responsibilities and roles and responsibilities of both the LA and parents.
- If any child protection concerns come to light in the course of engagement with children and families, or otherwise, these concerns will be immediately referred to the appropriate authorities using LA established protocols,
- All elective home education young people will have access to a careers service once they reach 13 years of age.
- The LA will assist the parents of home educated children who wish to pursue work experience through existing Education Business Partnership arrangements so that health and safety issues, child protection and insurance provision are covered to safeguard the young person.