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Elective Home Education - A parent's guide

The aim of Swansea Council is to provide guidance for parents who are considering or have decided to Elective Home Educate (EHE) their children. Swansea Council respects and accepts the right of parents to educate their children at home.

The education of a child at home is a great responsibility for a family and it demands serious commitment of time, patience and energy as it may have major implications on the child's future.

The information in these pages aims to set out the legal position of parents taking on the responsibility of a child's education, as well as the duties of the Local Authority (LA).

For the purpose of these pages 'parent' has the same meaning as in section 576 of the Education Act 1996 and therefore includes a person who has parental responsibility for a child and a person who has care of the child.

The newly formed Swansea Council Elective Home Education Team (EHET) recognises and respects the rights of the parent/carer to educate their child at home. The EHET will seek to develop positive working relationships with home education networks and will work cooperatively with EHE parents to enable children to have the best life choices available to them, and will endeavour to support children and families by ensuring that children access their right to education.

Welsh Government has published Guidance on Elective Home Education - document no: 202/2016 issued January 2017 which can be found at this link: gov.wales/education-skillsOpens new window

Do children have to go to school?

The Education Act 1996 states that it is the duty of the parent to ensure that the education provision for their child is 'efficient full-time education suitable to their age, ability and aptitude, and to any special educational needs they may have'.

A parent's duty to educate

Under section 7 of the Education Act 1996 the parents of every child of compulsory school age 'shall cause the child to receive efficient full-time education suitable to his/her age, ability and aptitude and to any special educational needs he/she may have either by regular attendance at school or otherwise'.

The role of the Local Authority

The Local Authority's first objective is to help parents to succeed in what they are setting out to do.

Children's rights and how this relates to Swansea Council

The Welsh Government has adopted the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) as the basis for all its work for children and young people. The Rights of Children and Young Persons (Wales) Measure 2011 imposes a duty on the Welsh Ministers to have due regard to children's rights, as set out i the UNCRC.

Additional Learning Needs (ALN)

The same procedure applies if your child has a statement of SEN and goes to a mainstream school.

Services available to children and families

An EHE child is still able to access universal services such as Careers Wales, Team around the Family (TAF), Info-Nation, Exchange counselling and Health Immunisation and Screening.

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