Elective home education

Educating your child at home

Parents have a responsibility to make sure that their child is educated. Most children attend school for their education, but parents have the right to educate their child at home - this is called elective home education (EHE).

Educating your child at home is a big commitment and there is a lot to think about. If you are considering it our guidance below can help you make your decision.

Frequently asked questions about Elective Home Education (EHE) 
I am interested in registering my child for EHE, who do I contact?

If your child is currently on roll of a school, you may notify the school that you wish to home educate your child. You may also contact the council by email home.education@rbkc.gov.uk

Am I legally obliged to inform my local authority that I want to educate my child at home?

The law does not currently require you to notify your local authority of your intentions to EHE. However, the local authority does have a legal duty to ensure its resident children are in receipt of a suitable education. It is therefore recommended that you register your intentions. For further information, a Guidance for Parents is provided to you.

My child’s current school has requested I remove my child from their roll and register as EHE, can they do this?

A school cannot request or advise a parent to de-register their child from the school to EHE. Any decision to EHE must be made by you. The responsibility to provide a suitable education to your child will be effective from the date after you remove your child from the school.

My child has special needs with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC), can I still home educate my child?

You have a right to electively home educate your child if you wish. It remains the responsibility of the local authority where your child lives to ensure that your child’s needs are met.

If your child is attending a special school, the local authority must give consent for your child’s name to be removed from the school roll. The following provides the number of children currently recorded as EHE with an EHC plan.

Academic Year Kensington and Chelsea Westminster
2021-22 5 7
2020-21 8 6
2019-20 3 4
2018-19 6 6
2017-18* 5 7
2016-17 1 2

Would the local authority supply textbooks, exam papers etc?

The local authority does not supply textbooks or pay/ arrange for exams. If you make the choice to home educate your child, you will be expected to pay for any exam fees, should you wish your child to sit them, and the cost of textbooks, tuition fees etc.

Am I required to follow the National Curriculum?

If you decide to EHE it will be your responsibility to provide your child with a suitable full-time education programme that meets your child’s needs according to age, ability, aptitude and any special educational needs. There is no requirement for you to follow a prescribed curriculum. However, the education programme should be well balanced and prepare your child for life within the community of which he or she is a member.

After I notify the school that I want to register my child as EHE with the local authority what happens next?

The local authority will send you a formal registration letter and acknowledgment of your intention to home educate your child, a request will be made for you to provide your education philosophy. A visit either face-to-face or virtually will be made with an elective Home Education Assessor (EHA) .

The EHE policy for Kensington & Chelsea and Westminster is provided.

What is a Home Education Assessor (HEA)?

HEA’s are employed by the Council and are qualified Teachers with at least three years’ experience of teaching and/or substantial experience in assessing the quality of educational provision. They meet all required checks for working with children and be qualified and registered to work in the UK.

What should I expect from the visit/virtual meeting?

If you prefer a face-to-face visit it will be conducted in your child’s home unless otherwise agreed by the EHE Assessor with you. In the case of the visit taking place elsewhere a suitable venue, such as a library or children’s centre, will normally be agreed. The visit would not normally take any longer than one hour and the HEA would expect to meet with your child. The same principal would apply for a virtual visit.

If your child has a EHC Plan, in most cases an Educational Psychologist will arrange to visit you and your child.

Do I receive a copy of the report form the visit?

You will be provided with a copy of the report approximately 2-3 weeks after the visit.

Can I provide evidence of home educating my child rather than agreeing to a visit?

If you do not wish to meet with the HEA, we will refer to your completed questionnaire setting out your education philosophy and ask that you support this with evidence of your child’s work. If you do have support in the delivery of your child’s learning, such as a tutor, an endorsement in the delivery of the programme is accepted as evidence but is not essential in the assessment. If available, they would need to confirm that the education provided, in their view, is suitable.

My last visit was unsatisfactory, what happens now?

The EHE Assessor will make recommendations in their report and arrange a further visit within 6 weeks. However, this does not apply for those who are SEN. Should their visit fail they will need to return to the provision named on their EHC plan.

If after the second visit the provision is still deemed unsatisfactory, and the local authority believes that there is insufficient evidence that a suitable education is being provided, a Notice (which gives no less than 15 days to respond) will be served instructing your child to attend school – a School Attendance Order under Section 437 (3) of the Education Act 1996.

What information do you hold about my child on the EHE records?

We hold their full name, date of birth, address, parent details and contact details, whether they have any SEN needs or have an EHC plan. If your child was on roll of a school, we would be provided with a notification of your request to home educate and basic education background information. We also record dates of your last visit and whether it was unsatisfactory. We do not ask for your religion or ethnicity. We do ask for your reason to home educate for our monitoring purposes, but you are not obliged to provide this information. For more details on information we may request, please refer to the Privacy Notice from page 5.

How long do you hold my child’s details after I register for EHE?

The Elective Home Education Officers will keep your details for the duration of your child’s statutory schooling; or until you request that you no longer wish to remain registered with the local authority as EHE, for which your details will be deleted after 3 years from the date of your de-registration request. For more detail on how we hold your information, please refer to the Privacy Notice from page 5.

How many children do you currently have registered as EHE in Kensington and Chelsea and in Westminster and how does this compare to previous years? 
Academic year Kensington & Chelsea Westminster
2021-22 89 Female 41 Male 48 149 Female 66 Male 83
2020-21 98 Female 42 Male 56 165 Female 78 Male 87
2019-20 71 Female 28 Male 43 111 Female 60 Male 51
2018-19 73 Female 33 Male 40 112 Female 44 Male 68
2017-18* 71 Female 32 Male 39 96 Female 40 Male 56
2016-17 51 Gender was not held centrally 69 Gender was not held centrally

Do you keep a record of how many children have attended a school prior to registering as EHE?

Some families have made the choice to remove their child from a school to EHE so this information will be made known to us by the school. Other families have made the choice to EHE at an early stage in their child’s life so they may never have attended a school. We do not therefore feel it is relevant to hold this data so cannot provide if requested.

I would like some further information and advice, where can I find it?

For more useful information in regards to EHE you may be interested in reading the following webpages:

Produced and updated termly by:
The Admissions and Access to Education Team
2nd Floor, Green Zone
Kensington Town Hall
Hornton Street
W8 7NX
Email: home.education@rbkc.gov.uk

The following brochure provides information and signposting to a wide range of services for home educators.  

All information on this page applies to residents of Kensington and Chelsea and Westminster Council.

If you would like to speak to a Home Education Officer, please call us on tel: 020 7745 6439 / 6448 or email us on: home.education@rbkc.gov.uk.

Read the Elective Home Education Privacy Notice.

 

Last updated: 5 April 2022