Is it legal?
Yes. The law says that children must receive an education – that education does not have to be within a School.
Children at special needs schools
Where a child is a registered pupil at a special school under arrangements made by a local authority, the authority’s ‘consent’ is required to delete the child’s name from the register of the school. This is not permission to home educate - parents have the right to electively educate their child at home and do not need permission to home educate - but be aware that you will commit an offence for which you can be taken to court if the child’s name remains on the register of a school, and absence with leave is not granted.
My child has an EHC plan
When a child has an EHC plan the local authority must still ensure that the child's special educational needs are being met and must hold annual reviews of the EHC plan.
Although you don’t have to attend meetings or submit reports, the local authority still has a duty to review your child's EHC plan annually which is difficult with no information. You may find that you would prefer to take control of your child's review, organise it and submit a summary report of the meeting instead. If you do, then talk to your SEN officer who will explain what you need to consider.
You do not have to provide what it says in the EHC Plan, it only applies to local authorities. You do have a duty to provide an education suitable to your child's age, ability and any special educational needs.
Do I need to be a teacher or appoint a teacher?
No. And you do not have to follow the National Curriculum. Neither do you have to keep to school hours, nor have a timetable – but you do need to ensure that your child receives an education.
If you decide to home educate your child you take on responsibility for all the associated costs and you may need to devote more time to your child - and may even need to give up your job. In such circumstances you may be able to apply for carers allowance and/or disability living allowance.
The Home Education Advisory Service provides information and support at https://www.heas.org.uk/
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