The issue of whether home educators should have to register or not has been debated for years. However, with increasing numbers of parents opting to home-school, there are now renewed calls to keep some form of record. Suzanne O’Connell reports

Parents do not have to send their children to school. According to the law they must only ensure that they receive a suitable education.

Home education is, in fact, the default status for all children as parents must apply for their child to go to school. If they choose not to, the child can remain at home. A parent can remove their child from school at any point without being required to give notification.

More children are now being home-educated. According to the Association of Directors of Children’s Services, 75,668 children were being educated at home in October 2020 – an increase of 38 per cent on the previous year (ADCS, 2020). However, no exact figures are available as the Department for Education (DfE) does not collect statistics on the number of children in home education, a fact which a recent House of Commons Education Select Committee report considers “astonishing” (2021).

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