Thursday, 10 December 2009

Money Money Money

Here we go, the dreaded bill hasn't been passed, but already people see the opportunities for a nice little earner.

On the agenda:

1. The case for a compulsory registration system for children educated at home.
2. Balancing the rights of the parents and the rights of the child
3. What is a ‘suitable’ and ‘efficient’ education in the 21st Century?
4. More tailored support for home educated children with special educational needs.
5. Financial support for home educators and implications for local authorities.
6. The educational attainments of children educated at home.
7. Improved access to facilities in schools and colleges, including libraries, sport & music.
8. Should local authority staff have the right to speak to home educated children alone?
9. How should local authority staff be trained to monitor home education?
10. Is there a role for Ofsted in respect of children educated at home?
11. What is the role of the proposed Consultative Forum on home education?

1. This made me laugh out loud. First thing the delegates will do at the session is register. I wonder, will they see the difference between the type of registering they will be doing and the LICENSING that they are proposing for us?

2. There is NO balancing of rights in the proposed bill, because the only people who will have any rights are the local authorities.

3. I have to wonder about the timing of this as the government will have just, or will be about to, publish a consultation into this very matter. So is the idea to get all the LAs singing from the same song sheet?

Suitable and efficient for the 21st century, should, as my friend Su pointed out a few days ago, have been sorted out before we were nearly 10 years into the 21st century.

Suitable and efficient in the 21st century is the same as it was in the last century - that is it achieves that which is sets out to achieve. What that is differs from person to person, and a one size fits all system is the absolute antithesis of what 21st, or any other century, education ought to look like.

4. Oh don't make me laugh! I know plenty of home educators who have children with SEN, and they are home educated because they couldn't get that tailored support in school. I have it on good authority that LAs are not even starting the statementing process on school children, preferring to shift the money into other areas such as *safeguarding*. So how are these same LAs going to suddenly find all this extra cash, and the extra staff, to support these HE children when they can't, or won't, support the SEN children who are already in their clutches? Do these people have money trees growing in their local parks? Well at over £200 per delegate attending this course, which will come out of the LA budgets, I reckon they must have.

5. I don't want any of your dirty cash thank you very much. If you have so much money to throw around supporting people like me, who have been getting along JUST FINE these past 14 years, does this mean that my children and potential grand children won't be worked into the ground to pay for all the excesses of this government? Thought not. Doesn't it all sound so friendly and *supportive* though? Does it heck as like, it's an aspartame coating on arsenic pill.

6. Is this the bit where they suggest yearly SATs tests for HE children? Or is this the bit where they want to come round and interrogate the children for several hours at a time? People who have trained for years, who have gained a PhD and practise as Clinical Psychologists, ie those much lauded professionals this government so loves, think this is not wise practise, so which nasty, vindictive, unqualified idiot in the DCSF came up with that corker? Why do they so despise our children that they want them to be treated worse than young offenders?

7. All very laudable, but this could already be done if the LAs wanted to. My LA has given HEers access to the schools library service, without any legislation or arm twisting, just because they thought it was something that could easily be offered to us.

8. I can't believe they even need to ask this question. NO. Why should the LA staff member have a RIGHT to talk to my child alone, when me and my child won't have the RIGHT to continue to choose the form of education my child receives? This is what I mean about their being no balancing of rights of parent and child, the scales are all tipped towards the rights of the LA. The LA is not a person. It has no RIGHTS. How can it be right that a government can remove what are considered to be human rights from humans and hand them to an official body? Do these people who come up with these ideas have no humanity? No conscience? Clearly not.

9. They shouldn't be monitoring home education. It is not their role. There, just saved the LAs a whole heap of money!

10. Ahhhhhh now this one is no surprise given the interest HEers have been getting from Ofsted of late. The simple answer is No. Ofsted have no place in Home Education, they have done enough damage to schools, they will not damage our homes. Perhaps this little graphic might get the message across in a succinct manner:

11. At last, a good question, and one that I'm sure many of us would like to know the answer to. Having been involved in *bridge building* meetings with my LA, I can say that if the *Consultative Forum* is going to work on similar lines, it will be nothing but a talking shop, oh and a box ticking exercise, of course. No substance, no benefit, just a waste of time and.. yes, money.

Education is big business, and this is a prime example. They say that Home Educators are welcome to take part in this course, but they charge exorbitant fees knowing full well that we can't get a chit signed for the cost of attending, and so we are priced out of the market. This is just a modern take on the age old feudal system - those in positions of power deciding how the little people's lives will be run. These people don't care about the children, they care about protecting their mortgages, and pensions, and pretty little arses. Well my children are NOT their pension fund.

ETA: Oh look, it seems that the dear old DCSF have been told to rein in their spending. Funnily enough, I know exactly where they can start!


  1. This lot of money grabbers don't care that the bill is far from certain to go through at all, as long as enough power hungry LA staff get their bosses to pay for this charming little outting. I bet those LAs will list it under 'EHE support' or 'EHE training' too.

  2. Go Tech !!!!!

    Love the graphic...

  3. Goodness, Tech, this makes me so very mad. Perhaps it really is best to get all families licenced, starting with politicians, fake charities and civil servants. Let them lead by example and the sheep will follow. I have had enough of this two tier system where we are constantly seen as the poor relative, hiding and preying on our own children. There are times at work when I just weep for what the state is doing in failing children, and it continues to do nothing. And then I come home to read this kind of greedy mania. Thanks for finding it and flagging it, as ever. Su xx

  4. Perhaps you should forward this to the DODS people or whoever the heck they are that are running this thing? A little EHE parent input, perhaps?