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mumsnetter on Scottish news today talking about home ed

(32 Posts)
Jennylee Fri 16-Feb-07 16:56:56

Yes it is me, unfortunately they also used a tragic case of a girl - Dannielle Reid who was not home educated at all ever to try and show that not monitoring home edders could be dangerous AAARGH!

Well it isn't and that case was a case of parents pretending to the child's school that they had moved to cover up the fact they had killed her.

anyhoo the main thing was supposed to be on our call for the granting of 'consent to withdraw' by LEA's to made simpler and quicker, with no 'cooling off period'

thats it

Elasticwoman Fri 16-Feb-07 20:51:36

Jennylee, home educating MNetters I have come across seem a reasonable bunch on the whole, (and I didn't see the item you refer to) but what do you think about this:-

I used to come across some tub-thumping bible bashers selling a non-mainstream religion on a main shopping street where school age children were regularly standing with their preaching relations (looked like grandpa) for hours at a time. When I asked why they weren't in school I was told they were home educated and passed all the government criteria to remain so. Apparently they only have to have a few hours' a week tuition so are free to stand around witnessing for God the rest of the time if their parents want them to.

How accountable are home ed parents to the authorities that children are being educated and not sent up chimneys, selling The Watchtower etc instead?

BeNimble Fri 16-Feb-07 22:07:54

Does it not occur to you that these children might be happy, well rounded, well cared for and enjoying their childhood — growing up in a secure environment as part of a community that has held together for generations.
Obviously, I hope that they are given freedom to choose as they grow older, just as it is healthy for children from all backgrounds and cultures to find their own paths/believes.
Seeing children with their parents is reassuring to me, much better than ones like lost souls — neither their schools and probably even less their parents giving a hoot where they are, so long as they're out of the way.
And anyway school takes up less than 40 hours per week so that still leaves plenty of time for shoving kids up chimneys and such — can the authorites ensure that all school attending kids live blissfully happy lives, free from abuse, neglect and selling The Watch Tower?

Runnerbean Sat 17-Feb-07 08:43:40

And my dds only receive 'a few hours tuition a week' because it is one to one and we can achieve loads more in that time than they can in schools with a class of 30!

Jennylee Sat 17-Feb-07 14:52:18

home ed families are as accountable for the safety of their children and happiness and wellbeing of their children as anyone else.

It is the parents responsibility for making sure their children are educated not the State's so these people you are referring to are doing that in a way that suits them and they have a right to follow their religion.

We are all accountable for the welfare of our children home educated or not. There is no difference.

FluffyMummy123 Sat 17-Feb-07 14:56:18

Message withdrawn

Mellowma Sat 17-Feb-07 15:16:37

Message withdrawn

Mhamai Sat 17-Feb-07 15:23:08

What is wrong with selling a Watchtower mag? tries badly to inject a bit humour......fails and heads off to get coat.

MrsSpoon Sat 17-Feb-07 15:30:58

IME the majority (although not all) of JWs send their children to mainstream Schools, only a few home educate and the motivation for doing so is not so that they can stand on street corners 'selling' the Watchtower.

MrsSpoon Sat 17-Feb-07 15:31:24

Sorry Jennylee, meant to say didn't see you on the news today.

crazylazydaisy Sat 17-Feb-07 15:43:04

Totally agree with Mrsspoon and BeNimble- have never seen these sad little children in shopping centres thumping tubs and bashing bibles!! Must live in the wrong area! One of my DD1 bf is a JW and she's a lovely sparkey little thing, who takes a joke about herself (and her religion)really well

Mhamai Sat 17-Feb-07 16:58:54

Oops did not realise Watchtower was JW so no offense intended.

SueBaroo Sat 17-Feb-07 17:55:00

flippin eck, is this an equal opportunity offense thread?

Let's see - a home-education doesn't have to look like a school one. My kids are being educated when we visit an old-peoples home every bit as much as when we sit down with the Saxon Maths books.
We're every bit as accountable as a parent who sends their children to school, but we have no responsibility to replicate a school at home.
I had a great school experience, by and large, ta for asking.
Jehovah's Witnesses don't sell the Watchtower and Awake magazines, they give them away, by the way.
And no, I'm not a Witness. I'm a reasonable MNetter who has occasionally stood in a town centre with some church leaflets, giving them away with my 5 year old's help. But it was on a Saturday, if that helps..

Jennylee Sat 17-Feb-07 18:17:24

It was on friday but there will be some pieces in the press about home education in Scotland this weekend, in the 'scotland on sunday' for one

anyway using the fact that once you saw some jehovas witnesses kids who were home educated who seemed to spend a lot of time on the street giving away watchtower magazines and talking about Jehova does not really amount to the crime of the century does it?

I'm not part of any religeon and I think only a few people home ed for religeous reasons but that is up to them.

Elasticwoman Sun 18-Feb-07 10:31:03

The children I saw were standing motionless and did not look happy. The religion being expounded was not Jehova's Witnesses and I fully support every one's right to follow their own religion, but I just felt uncomfortable about children standing around doing nothing but passively support the preacher.

I know that school educated children may also be sent up chimneys, or worse. But children who attend school are seen outside their family on a daily basis, which means that bad treatment stands a chance of being picked up. Doesn't always work, as Maria Colwell still died a bag of bones even though she had a school dinner every day. (Maria Colwell died of child abuse by her parents in the 70s, for those of you who don't remember).

Of course I'm sure the vast majority of home ed kids are better looked after than the average, but how does the accountability work - are you Ofsted inspected?

Runnerbean Sun 18-Feb-07 10:45:33


Jennylee Sun 18-Feb-07 11:29:31

lol no are you?

And this is a true fact:
some school in Scotland have not been inspected in up to 17 years.

You do not usually get inspected in your home as a parent unless you are having social services intervention for a specific reason or concern, so as people are presumed to be innocent why would we have to put up with home visits unless there was a suspicion of something wrong...seems like a discriminatory idea to me.

As home educated children are not locked at home all day, if there was abuse going on the children are seen in community and by relatives, which in many cases are the people who report/notice when children are having problems, if they are having problems.

Elasticwoman Sun 18-Feb-07 18:11:54

Didn't understand your first sentence at all Jennylee.

Schools in England get Ofsted inspected at least every 5 years I think - well, 6 years tops. Don't know how Scottish schools get away with it for so long, no wonder you have no confidence in them.

Even childminders get inspected, in their own homes. I am talking about inspecting the education, not parenting for home educators, though it's hard to see where the difference is for childminders with v young children.

Take your point about children being seen out and about, but is there really no checking up on children's educational progress if they are home educated? For example, do they have to take SATs at KS1 and 2 like school ed children?

SueBaroo Sun 18-Feb-07 18:24:59

No, no SATs requirement at all. In fact, often those who choose Home education do so because they don't want their children taking tests like that.

SueBaroo Sun 18-Feb-07 18:36:08

This is a good summary of the legal responsibilities of parents in regard to their childrens education..

Blandmum Sun 18-Feb-07 18:40:50

I find it very hard to believe that scottish schools are left uninspected for such a long time.

On online site states this regarding inection of scottish schools

'How often are schools inspected?
We continue to work towards meeting our commitment to complete the 'Generational Cycle' programme of school inspections. Our aim is for parents/carers to expect to receive both a primary and a secondary inspection report as their children move through school education. The programme started in 2002 and we aim to have inspected every primary school by 2009 and every secondary school by 2008.'

Tamum Sun 18-Feb-07 18:52:16

I am with mb- that must at worst be an extremely isolated case, and I would hate anyone to think that's what Scottish schools are like generally (though they do have no SATs, but that is A Good Thing IMO). All the schools I know of have been inspected within the last 5 years.

Jennylee Sun 18-Feb-07 20:05:13

Didn't understand your first sentence at all Jennylee. The lol no are you was in answer to someone who piped up 'are you offsted inspected?' but it seems to have disappeared

juuule Sun 18-Feb-07 20:05:15

"Even childminders get inspected, in their own homes."

"Even childminders"? Do I detect a bit of a derogatory tone there?
Childminders are caring for children other than their own and are also CRB checked. They are subject to various regulations due to the fact they are responsible for other people's children. I'm sure you are not suggesting that all parents should be CRB checked before they are allowed to look after their own children. Parents are responsible for their childrens education and it is for them to decide what form it will take. A parent is not a childminder and generally would have more interest in their child's ability to live a productive and happy life than anyone else.

"I am talking about inspecting the education, not parenting for home educators."

Depends on how you define education, though. Some home-educators don't agree with the NC and have a more holistic approach to education. Each child is treated individually and educated according to their needs. Autonomous home-educators do not use methods which would be recognisable to school oriented inspectors although these methods have proven to be very successful. So how would home-educators be inspected given the different styles, methods etc of educating?

"but is there really no checking up on children's educational progress if they are home educated? For example, do they have to take SATs at KS1 and 2 like school ed children?"
As some home-educators don't subscribe to the idea that a child should be at a certain stage at a certain age then SATs tests are irrelevant. Indeed some home-educators think that testing is harmful to a child's education. Children develop at different rates and it is not helpful to feel a failure at an early age because you fail to pass tests designed to check a school's delivery of education. As some children walk at 9months and others at 18+ months so some children pick up various skills sooner or later than others. Home-education is tailored to the age, aptitude and ability of the child and can change as the child develops.

Elasticwoman - If you want to find out more about the different aspects of home-ed I would suggest that you read some of the info on the home-ed sites.
Education Otherwise is a good place to start.

Jennylee Sun 18-Feb-07 20:09:39

I find it very hard to believe that scottish schools are left uninspected for such a long time.

I said SOME SCHOOLS in Scotland not all,

and we have to submit evidence annually that we are giving our children an 'efficient and suitable education' this can be in a written report, or some of our child's work or a video of what they do, they can ask for home visits to see the child but we have the right to decline a home visit and instead submit evidence.In Scotland and that is only if the LEA is aware of you, for instance if you have been given consent to withdraw your child from school, not if you were home educating from the start

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