Deregistration [from school] on demand - a vital civil liberty
Why is it of interest to home educators that the right of parents to deregister their children from school on demand be maintained?
Elaine Greenwood-Hyde says it better than I can:
Deregistration on demand is an incredibly important law for home educators and any tinkering will produce problems. It’s a very slippery slope. It is parents who are legally responsible, so when we deregister it should not be up to the government to say: "No, no … you have to wait 20 days." That’s not in accordance with section 7, for one thing.
It will mean 20 days of harassment that can be used to try to stop a family home educating. In particular I think families with children with SEN will be singled out. Ask any parent what it was like before deregistration on demand. There are horror stories.
It also leaves a loop hole for term time holidays for school pupils which might later be all-too-easily closed by government. The obvious next step is for them to decide that deregistration on demand itself is a nuisance.
Add to this that home educators have neither been informed or consulted about this and you know this doesn’t bode well for the future. Sneaky is as sneaky does. Beware the frog boiling...
Here's the latest, and here's the schedule for these changes:
By 21 March - responses received
W/c 28 March* - regulations to be signed
By 1 April* - regulations laid in parliament
6 April - House rises for recess
......On 1 September* - regulations come into force
* these timings depend on nature and content of the comments received from this letter.
So the new regulations are due to be signed this week!
Home educators were not informed - I gather someone came across the letter by accident this week. Ofsted - which has no role in home education - was informed, as was something called The Education Forum, which I've just joined but can't find any discussion about this.
People are emailing the letter's author (address in the heading) to make their views known, and some people are also emailing their MPs.
I think if this proposed change goes through, the general public will be even more reluctant to enroll their children in school in the first place.
Letter from Greg Midcalf, Policy Manager, School Attendance Safety Team: