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Home educating for a few weeks a year when we go "home" - would that be flexi-schooling?

(84 Posts)
gaelicsheep Thu 25-Oct-12 23:12:47

I've trawled the net and haven't found any reference to this specific type of situation. All I've found is stuff about home educating for part of each week, or stuff applicable to travellers which we're not (although we feel like it sometimes!). Has anyone done this? Pros and cons?

I also read about dual registration, but in our case one school would be in England/Wales and the other in Scotland and DC would be jumping between years, so I think perhaps not the best idea!

picnicinthewoods Sat 03-Nov-12 18:41:22

Hi gaelicsheep
It sounds like you now have it sorted but just was going to add that I used to teach in a school which allowed two pupils to do exactly what you were asking (extending the summer hols by a week or so either side) to allow them to visit family. The only difference was their family was further afield in India and Pakistan. So yes, totally up to the headteacher.
Incidently we do something similar to you, but we have chosen HE because it gives us exactly the freedom we want.
Good Luck

gaelicsheep Thu 01-Nov-12 21:45:39

Hi, it's getting on for a year, give or take a few months (don't really want to say). Not ages, but not a really short time either. I think we've both decided we don't actually want to settle down there to live. We've been there done that and jointly took the decision several years ago to settle up here. We worked bloody hard to get here and really don't want to go back. Living there in practical terms is a different matter, and we'll get along OK while we're there for however long that is, but I can't see home being anywhere other than home - definitely not for DH.

Decision made btw - we'll be coming back here every school holiday for the foreseeable future, including the odd extended half term if allowed by the school, and see how things evolve workwise. smile

maggi Thu 01-Nov-12 06:24:19

I may have missed it, but how long have you been living down South. It can take a good few months or even a year to settle into a new environment. Perhaps you will feel less torn once you have established yourself and made more friends and connections down here. The South can be a good place to live too.

gaelicsheep Thu 01-Nov-12 00:24:44

Thanks smile

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Thu 01-Nov-12 00:00:39

Good luck!

Saracen Wed 31-Oct-12 23:24:16

Good luck!!!

It's very refreshing to see somebody thinking outside the box and doing everything humanly possible in order to try to get things to work for the whole family. It sometimes seems to me that people are too ready to proclaim that life is miserable and you'll have to just suck it up like everyone else does. It might turn out that that is the case for you at this time, but at least you are exhausting all reasonable alternatives first.

I hope you can figure something out.

gaelicsheep Wed 31-Oct-12 21:58:39

Thanks CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease - it's very interesting to hear from someone who's done the same thing. For us it's changed from being properly a "move", to finding it couldn't actually be a proper move for reasons, as I said, I can't go into,and then realising we don't actually want it to be a "move", to now feeling like we don't actually live anywhere (but feeling like we still live at home home). We are trying as hard as we can to throw ourselves into life down there - DS has after school and weekend activities and in some respects I think it's better for him down there than up here. Financially it's killing us of course, which is not helping at all and makes us just want to turn the clock back. If we didn't have so much emotional attachment to home home it would be so much easier, but we do. Also I've moved around so much and I had finally found "home", so I'm so reluctant to give it all up. sad Anyhow, this now has very little to do with home education so I should bow out and go back to trawling the internet for cheaper places to rent.

exoticfruits Wed 31-Oct-12 21:51:24

It boils down to money-everything always does-they are inflexible because of funding.

CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease Wed 31-Oct-12 21:06:22

Good luck. It sounds very unsettling for you all. I'm glad we're out the other side of it. Hope you work something out. X

gaelicsheep Wed 31-Oct-12 20:55:31

OK, there is more to this that I really cannot and won't go into on a public forum - very good reasons why we have to return home as often as we possibly can at least for the medium time. I don't doubt it's confusing for DS but there really is no choice just now. Thanks for everyone's input. I think the inflexible attitude to education in this country is very unhelpful, but I'll do what I can to work with the school on this. Full time home ed is not going to be an option I don't think, but I'm sure we'll find a way to work this out somehow. Thanks again.

safflower Wed 31-Oct-12 06:48:10

I think there will be a problem with funding for each of the schools. They will get funding for the whole year for one or other school. Not both. Neither school will be able to hold his place for him if he is attending another school. He cannot be fully funded for both schools.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Wed 31-Oct-12 06:40:21

Op I have read the thread and it sounds like a really difficult situation.

With the 10 days absence you are currently getting authorised, are you sure you will be able to continue that? In England that is at the head's discretion and some refuse it and then local authorities may fine parents for unauthorised absence.

CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease Wed 31-Oct-12 06:34:04

I would have no problem with he if other parent was embracing it as something he wanted to do but depressed and somewhere he doesn't want to live to then be told to he might not help.

CanIHaveAPetGiraffePlease Wed 31-Oct-12 06:31:47

It all sounds very confusing for your son. If your son lives most of the year down south, and goes to school there, makes friends there etc then that is his home. Disrupting where he lives and chopping and changing will disrupt his education and friendship and ideally should be avoided out of school holidays.

We've moved away from 'real home' for my husbands job which I hated and returned to'real home' at least once a month. Several people did point out that that wasn't helping us to adjust to our new life where work was. After 2 years we changed again to live at real home but husband is away Mon-Fri most weeks now as I want my children to have a settled life. There is no way I could make them chop and change like that.

I understand your attachment to home as I have it and was miserable elsewhere. But when people talk about 'home' in there contexts they mean the place you reside for most of the year. A kind of shorthand. I remember many confusing conversations where I told toddler group mums I was 'going home' meaning far away, not down the road!

I guess if its only for a few years, having come out the otherside myself,I guess I'd be tempted to throw myself into the 'new home' during term time and return back to real home at holidays (and yes to many people that will be seen as a holiday,just a 'holiday back home'. It will almost certainly be the case for your son.)

You may just see it as working while you're away, but its where your son will be living -going to school, forming friendships etc so it really makes sense to just embrace it for the 2 years or whatever time you put on it. If after that time there is no hope of not reversing the situation so you live at home home in term time you could then look to reconsider jobs etc. Our move away was open ended and we suffered for not entering into forming new friendships and exploring the area in the first year. Our children weren't school age at the time. So in retrospect I'd put a time limit of 2or 3 years on it, go home home for the (school) holidays and try and embrace life away for the sake of your son -encourage friends around for tea, after school activities etc but having an exciting family home to go to in (his) the holidays.

exoticfruits Wed 31-Oct-12 06:23:40

I think that you will find it dreadfully difficult to find a school to agree. It is also going to be very hard on the DC, particularly when they get older- it is one of the reasons that people use boarding schools. I would go for HE full time and have more stability for your DC.

claraschu Wed 31-Oct-12 06:13:36

We did this because we travel for work. The school agreed ahead of time. They called it partially HEd, and I think they called us travellers (we're classical musicians). I think they agreed and it worked because our sons were flexible and easygoing and academically quite far ahead.

It was great. No drawbacks, and the best of both worlds.

safflower Wed 31-Oct-12 06:00:53

Whichever way you do it, there is going to be compromise, and you need to it be with the least amount of stress for all of you.

The only other option is to de-reg each time you want to leave wales and between you and dh you could HE him whilst in scotland. It doesnt have to be during the hours of 9 to 3, could be evenings, weekends whenever. The problem being, every time you go back to ales you have to hope to god the placve is still there at the school he went to before.

safflower Wed 31-Oct-12 05:57:33

How about you commute weeky, they move back home. You try to get more work from home.
DH not happy
DS not happy
you not happy because they are not happy

DH happy
DS happy
You happier but not with commute.

Or you look for a job back in scotland. Commuting weekly is an arse. DH does it from thousands of miles away each weekend. We like you have no option.

sashh Wed 31-Oct-12 05:13:39

Could you contact your local traveller education group? I know you are not a 'traveller' as such, but what you are wanting is what traveller education attempts to provide.

chocolatecrispies Tue 30-Oct-12 15:36:58

When I was a child we lived abroad and the summer holidays from school were very long - 3+ months. We came back to the UK and attended our old school for 6 weeks of it - I have no idea how come the school allowed us to! However we didn't have to take time out of our school abroad so that was not an issue.

gaelicsheep Mon 29-Oct-12 08:29:17

I haven't IWA but I'll have a look, thanks.

Discrete - what you describe is pretty much the scenario we planned originally and what I'd like to end up with. We'll see how we get on. :-)

discrete Sun 28-Oct-12 20:10:24

What about having him at school back home and going over to your place of employment during school holidays?

You could then if necessary come over for a few weeks here and there without your family, but most of the year would be spent at home and you could just spend the 16-20 weeks a year you were talking about at your place of employment?

Alternately, I second the getting in touch with some home ed groups in both areas. Parents in home ed groups are usually very knowledgeable about what is workable with the schools in the area and what isn't, and are generally very willing to talk to people who are thinking about making the move.

IWipeArses Sun 28-Oct-12 13:58:04

Have you read 4 Hour Work Week? He talks a lot about working remotely in there and how to negotiate it.

Hope DH depression improves too.

gaelicsheep Sat 27-Oct-12 22:52:40

Incidentally I do have good reasons for believing it might be possible to work remotely, I haven't just taken a job and now trying to shift the goalposts. I also feel like I've cheated DH by making him believe it was more likely than it turned out to be. I think that's the only reason he agreed to move, and actually if I didn't believe it was possible I wouldn't have made the move either. We started this with the idea of a two/maximum three year plan and I haven't given up yet!

gaelicsheep Sat 27-Oct-12 22:44:03

Hi again. I'm so touched so many people are trying to help me here, after I was on the verge of signing off here again at the start of this thread.

Bebanjo - in many ways I would like to do as you suggest, but honestly the sheer cost of the commute and staying away is totally prohibitive unless I only do it once or twice a month for just a few days. We're talking well over a thousand pounds a month, maybe more when everything is factored in and we just can't stretch to that. I also really really don't think I could cope with being away from my kids like that, they're 6 and nearly 2 sad

Roseformeplease - as it happens both schools are small rural primaries, the one at "home home" being smaller than the other. DS was in fact registered there until a couple of terms ago so I'm familiar with the different style of teaching with the CfE, which I did have my doubts about but now I'm not so sure. So I suppose what you're saying is that we could kind of reverse our plans and be at home home for most of term time and be down in work place in holidays. The only thing is that I think that would probably drive DH demented having two kids to entertain in a place that's really too small and with zero money due to cost of maintaining two places to live.

Honestly folks I think it's looking at the moment like we'll have to try to manage with taking the maximum 10 days allowed out for "holidays" through gritted teeth and really hoping the school understands that that is not really what we're doing. That way we can get up to 12 weeks at home home - assuming work remains happy with that. Then I think I just need to keep working on my employers to let us move back here full time and me spend 12 weeks a year down there instead, eg one trip a month. That really would be the best solution if only I can succeed with persuading them.

When we're away south I get really fed up of having no money at all and start thinking about selling up and buying down there, not that we can at the moment for reasons I can't go into or I really would out myself. But as soon as we set foot in the door back home I look around me at the glorious place we live and realise we can never ever live anywhere else. Wish me luck!

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