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im thinking of home schooling ds whos 13

(14 Posts)
foxy6 Mon 08-Oct-12 02:16:40

hi im thinking of taking my ds out off school and educating him myself but theres lots of things im not sure off. do i have to follow any education guidelins as to subjects i teach and meet standards. what help is there available for resources as i earn a low wage ( i get more in tax credits than wages) and cant afford to have to buy lots off books and equipment.

my main reasons for thinking about this mostly comes from behavioural problems we have with ds his attendance at the mo is only 62% so he isnt learning much. he spends a lot of time in the inclusion room bunking off or just getting suspended. its not from us being lazy and not sending him. he has problems with following rules. he has always been like this and has seen the ed psychologis at the end of last term but the school says they dont follow him up and i cant see her recomendations working. she states that he only attends school for the social asspects and unless they can engage him in learning there sanctions will not be effective and that they need to find a way of structing his free time (breaks). i cant see that happening. he spends 90% off his time at home grounded due to his behaviour. so i know i can keep him away from his friends ( fellow trouble makers ).

so any thought thanks

deleted203 Mon 08-Oct-12 02:55:35

I can't really offer much advice, but perhaps if you post in the 'Education' section under home schooling you will get much more help. There will be no help available for resources - it's your choice to home ed your son and so you can hardly expect local authority to pay for stuff. You don't have to follow the National Curriculum - but Children's Services will usually interview you to ask you to provide information about the suitability of the education you are providing. They will also usually give a date (once a year, prob) when they will return to assess progress, particularly if there are concerns about ds's education. They are there to make sure that your ds is receiving a suitable full time education. You will need a recognisable plan or method.

I can see why you feel home ed may be suitable for your ds, but you mention that you work (pt/ft?). Are you intending to give this up and stay home to educate him? I'm sure you'll get some positive help from home educators, but as a secondary school teacher I have to say that despite many years experience I would be reluctant to home ed any of my dcs, purely because I don't think I have sufficient knowledge of every subject I feel they should be studying. You may be able to keep him away from his friends - but will you be able to help him with enough academic subjects to give him choices in the future?

AMumInScotland Mon 08-Oct-12 14:02:09

You don't have to cover specific subjects, but you have to provide an education that is suitable for his "age, ability and aptitude" - so if his education has been a bit of a mess for a while, you would start from where he's at now, not some idea of where he "ought" to have reached for his age.

There aren't any rules about how you do that - some people do it more like school but if school really hasn't suited him then you could maybe focus on things which would be more useful to him - it really depends on what you hope he could improve in. Like, if he struggles to make sense of reading, you could focus on getting him to read instructions or factual books, you wouldn't try to give him Shakespeare to do! Same with things like numeracy - better to be able to work out if he's got enough to buy chips and a coke, and check his change is right, and don't worry about what 13yo in school would do in maths.

As to resources, there are none, and you have to look very carefully at what benefits you might get too, as staying home with a 13yo doesn't get you income support etc AFAIK.

julienoshoes Mon 08-Oct-12 14:38:18

hello foxy6
Lots of home educators I know do so on a very limited income and manage to continue working part time around home education, education definitely doesn't have to take place only between 9-3 in term time only. One of the very joys of HE is that it can fit into your own lifestyle.
Many resources are completely for on the internet, but we also used freecycle or paid small amounts at charity shops/car boot sales/jumble sales, ebay and amazon second hand. Indeed I would council against going out and buying expensive resources, which bought with enthusiasm at the beginning, often lie unused and unwanted on the shelves for ever after.

Are you on FaceBook? There is a Mumsnet Home Education FB page that you would be welcome to join, you can talk HE there and get accurate advice from people who actually know about it. If you want to join please do message me here or there as an admin first.

Home educators there, in other FB pages and also within local groups will be happy to share where they have found suitable free/cheap resources.

There are as many different ways to home educate as there are families doing it. Some do do 'School at home' others are totally child interest led, and there are loads of families somewhere in between.
So I agree with AMIS that something different to what he is doing now, may well work, we took our three children out when our son was 13, and found for us, following their interests worked best, with no formal work or structure.....heck if what school are doing isn't working for your son, what have you got to loose.

I know too that I didn't have to 'have sufficient knowledge of everything I feel they should be studying' because there is no should be studying, when it comes to home education. You don't have to limit yourselves to the narrow National Curriculum, you can study whatever interests your son, and he'll learn a load of other stuff on the way.

The Governments own "Elective Home Education: Guidelines for Local Authorities" which tells the LAs what they can expect, makes it clear that
"Home educating parents are NOT required to:

teach the National Curriculum
provide a broad and balanced education
have a timetable
have premises equipped to any particular standard
set hours during which education will take place
have any specific qualifications
make detailed plans in advance
observe school hours, days or terms
give formal lessons
mark work done by their child
formally assess progress or set development objectives
reproduce school type peer group socialisation
match school-based, age-specific standards."

neither are you required to allow Children's Services to interview you, that's NOT required either,
and sorry sowornout nor is "They will also usually give a date (once a year, prob) when they will return to assess progress, particularly if there are concerns about ds's education. They are there to make sure that your ds is receiving a suitable full time education" factually correct either.....(though local authorities would like you to think it is)

The law makes it clear that it is a parents responsibility to ensure the child gets a suitable education.
Local Authorities may make informal enquiries if they have reason to believe an education is not taking place. Case law suggest that once a LA asks about your home based provision, you would sensible to reply. However the choice of how to give information about the Home Ed provision, is ALWAYS the parents. So very many of us simply write a written report, and that's it.
In ten years we never had a home visit, didn't supply any work and the LA never met our children.....because our children didn't want to, and we respected their views.
Neither you nor they are required to 'assess progress' although the LA would like to...

and you don't have to be a teacher with detailed knowledge of every subject to give him choices in the future. You can learn with him, or find ways to enrol others if there is something there were to be something beyond your scope.

I'd suggest having a look further down this page and find the threads on 'websites about HE' 'Books about HE' and 'Finding local home educators' and if you can, join us on the Mumsnet Home education FB page.

Colleger Mon 08-Oct-12 15:00:59

If you do home ed for behavioural reasons then you must, must, MUST deschool otherwise you will have a lot of confrontation!

ThreadWatcher Mon 08-Oct-12 15:22:02

Sowornout - the op has posted in the homeed section!

Foxy - homeed is a great option. smile

foxy6 Mon 08-Oct-12 15:42:45

thanks for the reply's .

a little more about me we have 5 children ds1 is 16 and now in college he passed his GCSE's with 5 b' and 4 c's and we have no problems with him, ds 2 is 15 and doing his GCSE's this year, we have no problems in school with him. dd is 9 and due to ds3's problems and lack of help in primary school we sent her to a different school ( the local welsh medium school) she has no problems in school and is one for the cleverest in her class. Her words " i'm not the smartest there's is a boy smarted than me " smile so we have no concerns about her and ds 4 is 5 and goes to the same school as dd he has speech and language problems that were picked up straight away and has see the ed psych and been getting lost of extra support in in school. i am very pleased i chose a different school for dd and ds 4. i work 30 hours a week which is split into 2 x 12 hours shifts and 1 6 hours shift, effectively 2 and a half days a week . my dh was made redundant last years and has had no luck looking for work, but i wouldn't expect him to try and educated ds3 as he has very little patience, so i would do most of it myself.

i know i would have support from my parents and my sister-in- law ( who also home schools) and has made it seem more possible for me. They moved from america in the summer and do not live far away and she plans to continue home schooling over here. but she teaches things like Latin and piano ( which i have no clue about). i know i wouldn't be able to do music and languages, and what does everyone do about science? would he be able to do his GCES's when he is older? how would being home schooled affect his chances of going to college when he is 16? thanks x

Colleger Mon 08-Oct-12 15:48:30

I think you need to ask yourself what the best he will achieve at school. If he's not going to manage to get good grades then you're not going to do any worse. I'd suggest bringing him out and doing nothing for a long period of time - don't even mention work to him. Also, cut down the subjects. He needs English and Maths - that's it! Most subjects he can gain knowledge just by reading. Hopefully he'll start to ask to learn but I think you need to deschool for a while and be there for him. Find HE groups where he can socialise and want to aspire to what his peers are doing.

foxy6 Tue 09-Oct-12 11:35:28

i have taken the plunge and told the school that i will we taking ds3 out of school and home educating him. ds thinks he has the rest of the week in school but he wont be returning after today as i worry about his behaviour on the last day if he knows he is not going back. the deputy head was surprised but understands and he know ds is not happy there and always finding excuses to come home ( when he isn't suspended). this should also help the stress that we are under as parents, with constant phone calls and meeting with the school about ds behaviour and which has also had a negative effect on our relationship with ds.
so wish me luck i'm gonna need smile

Saracen Tue 09-Oct-12 12:44:23

Congratulations and good luck!

I agree with everyone else: take some time off to start with, let your son relax and do things he enjoys. Don't try to make him do any academic "work", at least not for a good long while until you are both on an even keel. Give serious consideration to autonomous education: if you've had a lot of trouble in the past with his behaviour then the last thing you need is to be fighting over "schoolwork" as well. You don't have to use the same model as your sister-in-law - your son may end up following a very different path to her children.

I hope your son will be happy about the decision and won't be upset about leaving his school friends behind.

Have fun!!

SDeuchars Tue 09-Oct-12 12:53:44

Well done for taking the plunge. Feel free to keep asking questions here. Have you officially deregistered him? If not, please make sure you do that so you can forestall legal problems.

And make sure you and DS enjoy yourselves.

Colleger Tue 09-Oct-12 13:29:21

I'd suggest not to contemplate doing any work until at least after Christmas. There are some great groups around and it may be worth posting roughly where you live in case anyone knows of some teenage social groups.

foxy6 Tue 09-Oct-12 21:13:21

hi i was thinking of just relaxing for a while and trying figure out the best way forward. get ds to think about what he would like to learn about then plan the best way to do it.

we live in south Wales Gwent area. ds is happy about the decision but i do wonder if after a month or too he may change his mind when he is not seeing so much of his friends ( something im happy about). but we will see.

Jamillalliamilli Wed 10-Oct-12 16:02:40

Good luck Foxy! smile
You say you wont be able to do x, y, z, and I'm guessing you think that's because you don't know about them? Just wanted to say I'm not well educated and have learnt just about everything alongside my son from scratch.

We don't work to the 'well educated teacher pours knowledge into empty pot' idea, which is successful in schools but imo not the best way of doing it at home really.

He's found it helpful to have someone no better at things than him to run rings round. smile

Ps don't be scared of by Latin as some high level thing, big shock to discover it's loads easier than modern languages!

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