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Got a letter from LA what to do now??

(12 Posts)
Angelface5 Sun 25-Jan-15 10:00:13

So got a letter saying would like to come and visit us to see if we have any issues or queries??
I have had a visit over two years ago when my children were first home educated and I welcomed the women in as wanted to show that I was educating my children and everything was ok. She was shocked at the work we had done and couldn't believe how well it was all going we then got a copy of the report and it was excellent so I did feel very proud that we were doing such a good job.
But anyway I'm now feeling very different and feeling like I'm being checked up on and judged. We haven't changed my children have learnt more from 3 months at home than a year at school.
But I wanted to know should I just open my door and let her see for herself or tell her no thank you. Not sure. Who of you let the inspectors come to your homes to visit and who say no thanks and why ?? Thanks in advance x

Velvetbee Sun 25-Jan-15 10:38:48

I say, 'No thanks'.
We used to send a yearly report but they don't ask for that now. I couldn't see how chatting and drinking tea with someone from the LA could benefit my children, when I could spend the time actually, you know, home educating them.
I used to send quite a detailed report though 'DC1 - Maths ..., English... Music...Bedtime books read...' Dividing our lives up into subjects made me realise just how much we were doing, even when it didn't look like work. It was also lovely to look back at previous years and see how much they had changed.

MinceSpy Sun 25-Jan-15 10:51:08

Education is compulsory and schools are inspected, you are the education provider for your children so why shouldn't you be inspected? You take the educating seriously sadly some HE parent's don't .
A visit every two years doesn't seem unreasonable, I'd say yes and use it as an opportunity to showcase the great work your all doing.

Saracen Sun 25-Jan-15 13:07:14

If you don't feel like doing it again, say no thank you.

It sounds like you don't feel a visit would be beneficial to you and it certainly wouldn't benefit anyone else for you to have it! The LA already know that you are doing a good job. Their money would be better spent elsewhere, by offering support to families who want and need it.

Saracen Sun 25-Jan-15 13:17:35

MinceSpy, home education is not subject to routine inspection in the way that schools are. Schools are a service, and they are inspected to help the public (especially parents) to know whether the education provided is of a suitable standard.

To inspect home education every few years would be similar to inspecting all families every few years to try to find out whether they are feeding their children enough. Yes, HE parents do have a duty to educate their children, just as all parents have a legal obligation to feed their children. But the law assumes that parents are complying with their legal duties unless there is reason to believe otherwise.

I do think it's unreasonable to require regular visits to families about whom there is no good cause for concern. More to the point, so does the law. There is no legal requirement for families to undergo routine monitoring. Government guidance issued to LAs states this specifically.

This is why Angel's LA has worded their letter carefully. It's likely that they do want to check up on her but are trying not to get caught out, by saying that the visit is for the purposes of offering "support".

Angelface5 Sun 25-Jan-15 15:08:01

Think I will let them come as I did before. It's lovely to see how surprised they are to see how much is done as it's one to one not like 30 to one at schools.
I totally understand that ever family does things differently and it's amazing how much a child learns through every day activities. And l love to hear about other families and how they work. Thanks all of you

MinceSpy Sun 25-Jan-15 15:14:40

Saracens thank you for the information, I didn't realise HE had no monitoring.

Angelface5 Sun 25-Jan-15 18:10:33

I always love reading Saracens replies she gives great info and knows a lot,she has helped me a lot.
Would live to know an average day in your house with home ed Saracen. X

streakybacon Mon 26-Jan-15 12:37:01

I write a report and send it before the EHE team asks for it. That way I retain control, but it shows I'm still willing to work with the LA so they can carry out their duty to identify children missing education. So, when the letter comes offering to visit, I can just refer them back to the report and say if they need clarification on any points, they are welcome to contact me. They never do, because everything they need to know is there in front of them.

It also means I can write the report at my leisure, slowly over the course of the year, and I'm not under pressure to write something hurriedly when they ask. It's an easier solution, I find, and it keeps everyone happy.

Saracen Mon 26-Jan-15 15:35:06

Great, Angel! Glad you are feeling that it's under your control and you've made a decision which is comfortable for you. And flowers thanks for your lovely compliments blush.

Angelface5 Mon 26-Jan-15 22:17:59

Streakybacon hope you don't mind me asking how do you put the report together?? Do you include everything into it as in every little bit of work you do and every place you visit etc. or is it a case of showing where the children are up to with things and how it is all progressing.
The other thing aswell is I have two children of school age and two younger children that will be joining them soon and not knowing how I'm going to split myself into 4 confusedconfused

streakybacon Tue 27-Jan-15 06:26:32

Not that detailed, no. I keep a daily record of what we do, listing everything, and that forms a basis for writing a short paragraph in the report.

I'll write a general overview (including development and how we work with his SEN), then a line or two about each subject area.

I write about what he's been doing, progress he's made, any difficulties and what we're doing to overcome them.

I have a paragraph about group activities he goes to, grades/levels achieved, feedback from group leaders if I have any.

I think about the widely held myths about HE (socialisation, PE etc) and write a little about those. In short, I tick the LA's boxes for them and keep them happy.

Sometimes I include a separate list of activities we've done together - theatre, cinema (if it could be described as educational), holidays, workshops (HE and community).

I also give some vague plans for the coming year, though I'm clear that it's not carved in stone and subject to change, depending on ds's progress and interests. Some naughty LAs will hold you to plans you've made, so it's best to have a get-out, just in case.

I don't include any work samples.

Of course, some people will tell you you don't have to engage at all and you don't have to send a report OR have a visit, and they're right. Legally this is true. But it depends on how much time you want to spend avoiding the LA and fighting them, and by refusing to engage you risk being marked as 'difficult' and they'll likely pester you more than ever. For me, I find it far easier to spend a bit of time giving them a little bit of basic information so they can see I'm providing an education, then I can get on with the important job of teaching my son with a clear mind. I've only got one child, but with four I'd definitely want to focus my time on the job in hand, not fighting bureaucracy smile.

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