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Councils to maintain register of home educated children under proposed law


Conservative MP Flick Drummond’s Children Not in School Bill received an unopposed second reading in the Commons on Friday.

Politicians, council leaders and headteachers’ unions have been calling for a national register, but many home educators oppose this as they fear it could lead to greater interference.

Estimates by the Department for Education (DfE) suggest 92,000 children were in elective home education (EHE) at the census date in autumn last year, compared with 80,900 children in autumn 2022.

Conservative MP Flick Drummond
Conservative MP Flick Drummond’s Children Not in School Bill received an unopposed second reading in the Commons on Friday (David Woolfall/PA)

Ms Drummond, MP for Meon Valley, previously said: “With no comprehensive data collected, we do not know what proportion of children receive a suitable education and England is an international outlier in this respect.”

She added: “A register would not seek to disrupt a parental right to choose where and when they educate their child, quite the contrary, as a register can be used to offer resources to families who are often home educated at great personal cost should they want such support.”

The Government-backed Bill will undergo further scrutiny at committee stage after it was waved through second reading without debate.

In January, Labour said it would introduce a national register of children who are not in school if the party wins power at the next general election.





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