Elective Home Education (EHE) - update for local authorities
3 June 2021
A statement from the DfE on Elective Home Education and a Kent Analytics Report.
The Government’s aim is to ensure all young people receive world-class education to allow them to reach their potential. In turn, we support the right of parents to educate children at home when they wish to do so and can provide a suitable education. Educating children at home works well when it is a positive choice and carried out with proper regard for the needs of the child.
Over the last twelve months of the coronavirus pandemic, most local authorities (LAs) will have seen an increase in notifications from parents about EHE. This has resulted in more children being home educated in most LAs. Feedback through our Regional Education and Children’s Teams (REACT), from Partners in Practice and from representative bodies is backed up by data from the Association of Directors of Children’s Services’ annual survey into EHE published in November 2020. The survey estimates at least 75,668 children are home educated across all 151 LAs in England. This is a 38% increase on 2019. The most common reason cited by parents for home educating their child was due to health reasons directly related to COVID-19.
Many home educated children will have an overwhelmingly positive learning experience. The Department would hope most parents do so with their child’s best education at the heart of the decision to home educate. However, this is not the case for all, and (EHE) can mean some children are less visible to the services that are there to keep them safe and supported in line with their needs.