Backlash against government proposals to monitor children educated by their parents.
The government has been accused of treating parents who go to home schools like “criminals” after a proposal for a registration system to monitor their children.
On Tuesday, Conservative MP Frick Drummond called for the establishment of a register of “children out of school”, citing safety and welfare concerns.
Introducing the Out-of-School Children (Registration) bill during a 10-minute rule motion, she urged lawmakers to support legislation “critical to the welfare of children.”
The bill aims to impose legal obligations on local governments to maintain registers of out-of-school children.
Conservatives told MPs that they “do not currently have comprehensive data on how many children are not on school rolls, where they are and what quality of education they have, if any. do not have.
‗This was reflected in a recent report by the Education Task Force, which concluded that in the current situation the government cannot confidently say that every child in the country is being provided with an adequate education. increase.
“This is unacceptable. A quality education not only holds the key to a bright future for every child, it also plays a central role in ensuring the social and economic prosperity of our country.” .”
Mr. Drummond said from the limited data available, children who were kicked out of school were eligible for free school meals, were receiving support for educational health and care plans and special education needs, and were less likely to be absent or out of school. He said the likelihood of a history was “disproportionately high.” Exclusions.
The politician also said an estimated nine out of 10 local governments believed they had failed to identify all children who were home-schooled.
“These children and families desperately need our help, but we have no idea who they are or where they are, so we are unable to provide them,” the House of Representatives said. told to
Her remarks drew outrage from homeschool campaigners, who said Mr. Drummond was “demonising” the people he chose to educate his children.
Wendy Charles Warner, chair of Educate Other, told The Epoch Times: “The 2009-2010 Badman Review damaged the relationship between home education and public institutions almost irreparably.
“We’ve worked hard to build those relationships, and essentially people like Flick Drummond have worked hard to counter what we’re doing.
“We strive to build a positive and mutually respectful relationship, but every time someone rises up in the lord or the House of Commons and demands that those dreaded tutors be hunted down and treated like criminals. And, in effect, they do. Relationships deteriorate.”
The Badman Review, also known as the British Selective Home Education Review, was conducted by Graham Badman, former Director of Child Services for Kent County Council.
The study was designed to investigate whether the number of children known to be in social care in some municipalities is disproportionately high compared to the size of the home-educated population. was commissioned by the government to
Budman’s research found that 70 local governments are known to receive social services for 0.2 per cent of the UK population, compared to 0.4 per cent for children educated at home. I discovered.
The overhaul met with fierce backlash from homeschool groups, parents and other campaigners.
“Home educators are now being demonized again,” said Charles Warner.
“These are perfectly normal families, doing good jobs, but where they are not doing good jobs, there are laws that are firmly enforced.
“I’m actually coaching local governments in their home schooling practices, and I’m sitting there teaching them how to throw books at people who aren’t doing a good job.
“But at the same time, I teach them how to behave respectfully towards such people.”
fear of fairness
Alka Segal Cuthbert, director of the “Don’t Divide Us” group, also criticized Drummond’s proposal.
She said the government should investigate and address why more and more parents in the UK are reluctant to send their children to mainstream education.
“When you see a group of people who are unregulated, you instinctively want to regulate them. In fact, they see very serious underlying problems in the education and school systems that exist today. Better turn,” she told The Epoch Times. times.
“I’ve noticed that more and more people are homeschooling now. I’m not sure if they’ll homeschool because it takes a lot of effort, but what homeschooling can offer kids. I definitely want to homeschool because I can’t see anything positive about it.Education today is a terrible indictment to the government.”
In the report (pdf) The 40% increase in people who have switched their children to homeschool since 2018 may be because mainstream schools are no longer seen as fair, think tank Servicetis said Monday. It may be “anecdotally” related to parents’ fears that
The report, authored by Joan Nadler, also suggests that extremist activists are influencing sex education and transgender issues in schools.
Sagal Cuthbert added: “The real problem is that governments, and our political class, if you prefer, have no idea what education itself really is, regardless of the external ends that we want to attribute to it. It’s not.
“So if you don’t do that, without a vision for education, education will become football and the latest fad for those in power.
“This is very detrimental in education, because there is no stability or continuity of knowledge.”
The Epoch Times reached out to Frick Drummond for comment.
Drummond told lawmakers on Tuesday that monitoring out-of-school children is “extremely important” to child welfare and education, adding: “The introduction of a preschool roll will facilitate this. would,’ he said.
“This will improve the capacity of local governments to take care and education responsibilities for children not attending mainstream education institutions, and keep children out of the net.”
“If we don’t act now, this generation will fail,” he added.
Conservative lawmakers insisted they were not “upsetting families who have successfully home-schooled”.
But she said neither local government nor central government nor schools “can honestly answer the question of how many children are out of school” and “make sure all children have a safe and adequate education.” How can we know?” he added.
The bill is scheduled to be debated again by members of parliament on November 24, 2023.