Although there are many advantages for choosing home education, there are also disadvantages.
With your children around you constantly will you still have time for yourself?
Will you be able to work if you need to? Can you afford to give up one wage? What
benefits would you gain or lose?
Think the whole thing through, research the subject, talk to others who already home
educate, join lots of groups where you will find home educators and ask questions.
Google ‘Home Education’ and follow all the links, read the Education Act and the
document issued to education authorities regarding Elective Home Education. (Top
right when following the link)
Put together a plan of how you would work it, would you be autonomous or structured?
Do you have a local group in your area where you and your child/ren could mingle?
Will you be following the National Curriculum? Will you be opting for exams or
not? Where is your local centre should you need one? What equipment if any would
you need to purchase or do you have it? In other words what is the plan for your
child? Not only do you need this clear in your mind but when your local education
authority contact you following you de-registering you need to be able to tell them,
maybe not everything to start but you need to have it worked out somewhere along
When you have researched to the point where you are sure about your decision and
have decided this would be a far better route for you and your family then you need
to de-register your child, a simple letter will do this direct to the school. You
may only de-register from a state school NOT an Special School. Please check the
law in your own area out first BEFORE you make any attempt to de-register.
What follows is a time of de-schooling, you and your children getting used to your
new regime and planning a few things together. For whatever reasons you decided
to withdraw your children a few months is usually taken to all come to terms with
the new way of doing things, you may decide to jump straight in and keep going, it
is all up to you. You can change your approach and methods when ever you like to
suit yourselves and your family.
Once you have de-registered you will normally receive some sort of communication
from your local education authority as the school have contacted them upon you de-registering.
You will either receive a visit or a questionnaire regarding your decision. A home
visit may not be what you require but if and when they turn up at the door just do
what is comfortable for you and your family.
Either invite them in and go with the flow or ask that you keep your correspondence
with them by mail as you are still finding your feet. I chose not to invite them
in but ask that we correspond in writing, I was then handed a questionnaire to complete
and send back as soon as I was able, they also said they were there for me should
I require any help or information and left their office address and phone number.
Although you are under NO obligation to complete these questionnaires or accept a
home visit or indeed invite the education authority into your home it is wise to
open a communication channel with them and to keep it open, keep it on a firm and
Have a look at a few Education Philosophy: your ideas and beliefs, plans, goals,
etc (search the Internet for others Ed Phils’ for examples). Take time to put your
own together ready for submission to your LEA when they contact you to see how you
We need to show we are loving, caring parents wanting only the best for our children,
that we have researched it, have resources and help at hand and most of all we have
other home educators to chat too and know they are there for help and advice when
and if we need it.
Although you are free to put your child back in ‘School’ at any time and then if
need be ‘de-register’ again - think it through, weigh it up and do what is right
for you and your children. Home Education is not an excuse for ‘no education’ but
for those who genuinely wish to have their children educated ‘otherwise than at school’.
Remember at the end of the day, although you want what is best for your child and
may or may not have a plan for the home education you wish to provide, depending
upon how many children you have at home and their ages it might not always be possible
to make it happen. The stereotypical teenager will do what they want to do most
times and may refuse to lean anything you have for them, refuse to go back to school
etc. It’s only when they reach the ‘school leaving age’ they realise they should
have tried harder and somehow the blame is all yours! (Personal experience from
more than a few families I know).
Surfing colleges recently a few families have told me of the frustration of having
to have ‘entry requirements met’, a few years ago, willingness and enthusiasm would
get you into college if you had no exams but now they are more strict - not them
apparently - Government put the rules there. Another way of Government fading out
HE as with no certificates you can’t go to college, with them trying to make it impossible
to sit an exam as an ‘External Candidate’ too they are certainly trying to stop it
To sum up: Consider all your options, take your time and research the subject