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Home Education: Standards

Question for Department for Education

UIN 108625, tabled on 18 October 2017

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to ensure that local authorities are able to guarantee an adequate education for home-schooled children.

Answered on

26 October 2017

Parents have a duty under section 7 of the Education Act 1996 to ensure that a child of compulsory school age receives an efficient and full-time education suitable to their age, ability and aptitude, and any special education needs - either by regular attendance at school or otherwise. ‘Otherwise’ includes education at home. Local councils have a duty under section 436A of the 1996 Act to identify so far as possible children who may not be receiving a suitable full-time education. This allows them to make informal enquiries of parents about the education provided. If a local authority is not satisfied that the education is suitable, it can begin a process of formal notice, asking the parents to satisfy them. If the local council remains dissatisfied it can issue a school attendance order which can result in prosecution if the parent does not comply.