Home education

Educating your child out of school

If your child is a registered pupil at a school, you must write to the headteacher explaining what you intend to do and giving the date that your child will stop attending the school. A telephone call is not enough as your decision needs to be conveyed in writing. You need do no more than this.

If you have decided to educate your child out of school because you are not satisfied with the school in question, we recommend that you contact the headteacher or Information for Families to discuss ways to resolve your concerns before you take your child out of school.

If you decide not to take up a place allocated at a school, you must notify the admissions team and then contact the headteacher of the allocated school.

If you are moving in from out of the county, or if you wish to register with us, please contact the ISEND Teaching and Learning Provision.

Your responsibilities if you take your child out of school

Your first responsibility is to make sure that you have made arrangements for your child to receive an education that meets the statutory requirements. This means that any arrangements you make must provide equivalent, efficient full-time education suitable to the age, ability and aptitude of your child. This includes any special educational needs that your child might have.

You do not have to provide the National Curriculum, but any education you do provide should include the following characteristics:

  • Consistent involvement of parents or other significant carers.
  • Opportunities for the child to be stimulated by their learning experiences.
  • Access to resources/materials required to provide Home Education for the child such as paper and pens, books and libraries, arts and craft materials, physical activity, ICT and the opportunity for appropriate interaction with other children and other adults.

Finding out more

If you’re thinking about educating your child at home, it’s a good idea to talk to other parents who are already doing it. Families usually keep in touch to exchange ideas and let their children socialise.

You can find more information, and other parents, through Education Otherwise

What will the Children's Services Authority do?

If your child is registered at a school, the headteacher will make sure that the Local Authority (LA) knows about your decision. They will also inform the ISEND Teaching and Learning Provision.

Your child’s name will be removed from the school register from the date you plan to educate your child at home as indicated in your letter.

If your child is registered at a special school, your child’s name cannot be removed from the register until the LA gives its consent. It will give this consent when your child’s caseworker is satisfied that you have made suitable arrangements to educate your child out of school.

The LA has a statutory duty to ensure that all children being home educated are receiving a suitable home education.

Once your child has been de-registered from school, the school will inform ISEND Teaching and Learning Provision. We will then write to you with an information pack including your legal responsibilities as a parent and a useful information booklet.

As we have a duty to ensure all children are receiving a suitable education, we will also include a brief questionnaire in which you can outline your initial plans for your child’s home education. We will then contact you to arrange a mutually convienient time for us to meet you in your home or venue of your choice. The purpose of our visit is to celebrate success and find out more details about how you will deliver your child’s education.

We can also offer wide ranging advice including information on local home education groups, useful websites, other resources, accessing support for any special educational needs, examinations and post-16 provision. We understand that in the beginning stages of home education, the structure may not be fixed and may change, so we like to offer a follow-up visit after 3 months.

Parents/carers do also have the statutory right to provide the LA with details of their home education by post. This may include: specific examples of learning, diaries of educational activity, projects, assessments, books, photos and educational visits etc.

If you would like to see further information, please see the ISEND Teaching and Learning Provision Local Offer.

Access to the School Nursing Service for electively home educated students

Electively home educating families are entitled to access the school nursing service. Their contact details are:

Hastings and Rother – kcht.sh-hr@nhs.net 01424 728368

Eastbourne, Hailsham and Seaford – kcht.sh-ehs@nhs.net 01323 446049

High Weald, Lewes and the Havens – kcht.sh-hwlh@nhs.net 01892 669393

Information on School Nurses