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Can you de-register a child from school on a temporary basis?

(15 Posts)
ThePrisoner Mon 03-Sep-07 21:15:44

I'm in slightly alien territory here (I usually post in the Childminder's section), but am hoping all you wise owls can give some advice. I have permission from the parents of the child involved to ask here.

If a child is having problems with school (mainstream), is it possible to temporarily de-register your child from that school until the school they want him to go to (a special school) has a place?

I don't know if more information than this is needed, but thought I'd start from a very basic level!

Hulababy Mon 03-Sep-07 21:18:41

I beleive so, but they will have to let the LEA know they are providing alternative education for him, i.e. home ed, I think.

flamingtoaster Mon 03-Sep-07 21:27:47

Different scenario but I home educated my daughter for just six months because she was bored in Year 6. She was home educated until she went to Grammar School in the September. I don't see any problem in what is being proposed for the child you are talking about - provided you tell the school he is leaving, tell the LEA and provide education suitable to his needs until he returns to school.

ThePrisoner Mon 03-Sep-07 21:57:07

To be honest, as he has special needs, his need for education is slightly different to those of other children his age. He is 9.

If his parents removed him from the school, I think he would probably come to me for 2/3 hours each morning - I will be doing things with toddlers that he loves to do. He would be with his dad for the rest of the day. I guess that none of us are really talking about "education" as such, just a great need to get him out of his current school asap, but legally! There is no way of knowing when the special school would have a place.

Both his parents and me are dreading his return to school this week, as he has had a wonderful summer holiday and become the little boy he used to be. I don't want to suggest things to the parents if it causes them problems.

TheodoresMummy Mon 03-Sep-07 22:13:14

I'm no expert here, but many people who remove their children from school because the children have had problems, often spend a period of time 'de-schooling' before starting the next chapter (or whatever you want to all it).

Many HEers follow a very child-led approach, also.

So, imo, I wouldn't see why there would be a problem.

ThePrisoner Mon 03-Sep-07 22:17:07

So, if they tell the LEA that he isn't going to school, do they have to say why, or what they intend to do, etc? And can they do it this week (ie. just not send him back)?

Katymac Mon 03-Sep-07 22:19:36

TP - what if it takes a long time to get a place at the school they want

I have had a 16yo SN youngster for a few weeks - but I think F/T semipermanent could be hard (mingd you, you already have a relationship with him which would make it easier)

Good luck either way

ThePrisoner Mon 03-Sep-07 22:36:27

Mainstream school wants him to go to the special school (and have done for a long time); special school is more than happy to have him, but may not have a place until half-term (if they're lucky, there is no guarantee whatsoever). We don't know whether taking him out of school altogether will hurry things along or cause more problems.

I have minded him since he was a baby, we have a wonderful relationship and I love him dearly, and I get on brilliantly with his parents.

I have also struggled with him for the last couple of years but, with a lot of input from my childminding network co-ordinator and SENCO this summer, have really seen an amazing improvement during the holidays. His parents and I just know that the (mainstream) school won't acknowledge this. As far as I am concerned, I think that they have "labelled" him, and that's that.

Julienoshoes Tue 04-Sep-07 14:18:40

I have home educated my children, who all have SEN for more than 6 years.
You can deregister your child at anytime. As long as you live in England or Wales you can just send in a deregistration letter.
A sample deregistartion letter can be found on the Education Otherwise website here and on the UK Home Education website Both sites contain excellent sources of information about home educating children. The law is slightly different in Scotland but these websites contain information about that too.
There is an excellent website for families who home educate their children who have Special Educational needs here

All of these websites contain links to home education support lists-and the 'HE-special' one has lots of parents who are very experienced in home educating children with the sort of needs you mention. If I were you I would suggest these parents join that list and ask questions there.

You don't have to tell the LA at all, the parents responsibility is to send a deregistration letter to the Head teacher/Proprietor of the school. It is the schools responsibility to inform the LA.
If the child has a statement of SEN then the LEA will want to review it as normal and that may be the time to be talking to the LA and making it clear that a place in the Special School is still wanted (unless of course the parents decide to continue to home educate, as many of us do, once we see the brilliant results for a child such as this.

So yes, you can just deregister and never send the child back-Section 7 of the 1996 Education Act says ""The parent of every child of compulsory school age shall cause him to receive efficient full-time education suitable ;
a) to his age, ability, and aptitude, and
b) to any special educational needs he may have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise."

The LEA may then make informal enquiries if they have reason to believe an education is not taking place. Parents may be asked to provide information about the education they are providing, but the choice of how to present such information is the parents.
Personally we do not have home visits or inspections, we choose to send in a written report instead. The children have never chosen to meet with the LEA or to send in any work for them to inspect either.

How you home educate is then up to the parents. You do not have to follow the national curriculum and there is no set subjects to follow either.
I strongly suggest reading the information on those three websites as they contain details of all the legal aspects, about 'deschooling' and suggestions of the types of home education.

Home education has been incredibly successful for our three children, we have not had a single regret about it and our lives have been such fun!


ThePrisoner Tue 04-Sep-07 20:33:35

Wow! This is exactly what his parents need to know - I will pass on this information to them. They obviously need to check out a few things, but I truly hope that we can sort it all out. At least they have people they can contact.

Many many thanks for all the information.

Julienoshoes Tue 04-Sep-07 22:55:10

Happy to help smile
I just remembered, there is a very good book that might help them decide if this is right for them-some of the parents who you will find on the HE Special Ed support list, that I mentioned, contributed to this book. I would highly recommend it.

"Home Educating Our Autistic Spectrum Children: Paths are made by walking: Paths Are Made by Walking"
By Terri Dowty

Mainstream educational provision for children on the autistic spectrum can be inadequate or inappropriate. An increasing number of parents dissatisfied with the education system are looking elsewhere for an approach that will suit their children's needs. In "Home Educating Our Autistic Spectrum Children", parents who have chosen to home educate their children with autism or Asperger's syndrome candidly relate their experiences: how they reached the decision to educate at home, how they set about the task, and how it has affected their lives. Following these personal accounts, the final chapters offer practical advice on getting started with home education, legal advice from an expert in education law, and contact details of support organisations

ThePrisoner Wed 05-Sep-07 01:06:12

I will pass on all the information to the parents (not sure if the book you recommend is OK for all SEN children, he is not autistic). Thanks!

Julienoshoes Wed 05-Sep-07 07:34:54

I think that the book, borrowed from the library, would be great for all parents who wish to HE their children who have Special Needs-I certainly found it so.
There are so many encouraging tales there

Blandmum Wed 05-Sep-07 07:41:42

You can re-regester and then re-regester, but if the schools in your area are full, it might take some work to get their ds back into an appropriate school.

Or the child can be HE for the rest of his 'schholing' life.

ThePrisoner Wed 05-Sep-07 21:22:01

He's on a waiting list for the special school, so his parents are just crossing fingers at the moment. Home-educating as a long-term idea is probably not high on their agenda, but you never know.

Thanks for the advice, I will suggest the book too.

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