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Some frequently asked questions

Is home educating legal in the UK?

Home educating is legal in the UK. Education is compulsory but you don’t actually have to send your children to school you can home educate them.

What if I intend to travel with my child and home educate?

You can travel with you child and home educate, even abroad, unless you plan to reside there and then you must follow the law set out by that country.

Do I have to follow the National Curriculum?

No, you don’t have to follow the National Curriculum.

Do I have to be qualified to teach my child?

No, you don’t have to have any qualifications or be a teacher to home educate.

Do I have to tell the Local Authority that I am home educating?

If you have never attended school then you don’t need to tell them but if your child has attended school you need to ensure they have deregistered. You should write to the Headteacher of the school and inform them that you wish for your child to be deregistered. If you been allocated a place for your child at school but no longer want it you should complete a form via your Local Authority or write to them and let them no you no longer require a place as you wish to home educate your child

What do I do if I want to withdraw my child from school?

You need to tell the school’s Headteacher in writing.

What resources or support does the Local Authority provide?

They are not required to provide any, but some do offer access to specific resources or websites.

How do I go about putting my child in for exams?

There is a charge to sit exams as your child is classed as a private student. You can find guides for sitting exams from the different examining boards such as OCR and Edexcel. There will be entry forms through their websites to complete and this will tell you where to go to sit the exam.

What age can my child sit exams?

GCSEs are the main qualifications taken by 14- to 16-year-olds in schools and colleges in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. But you can take them to gain a qualification in a subject you’re interested in at any age. The same applies for A Levels, normally taken by 16- to 18-year-olds

Can I home educate if my child has additional needs?

Yes. If they are already at a school and have a statement or EHC plan you need to inform the Local Authority that you are taking them out of school. You have the right to home educate them whatever their ability. If they attend a special school then you need the consent of the Local Authority.

What is flexi schooling and how do I go about finding a school that will accept my child in a flexi school arrangement?

Flexi schooling is where a parent and school arrange that the child will only attend part time, the rest of the time is when the child is home educated. The ability to enter a flexi school arrangement is at the discretion of the Headteacher and there is currently no appeal against their decision.

Is there a central database of groups that I can join?

No, but there are lots of groups to be found through tools like Facebook.