EdYourself – October 4th 2011

New DfE Guidance on Claiming Funding for Home Educated Children

On September 30th the Department for Education published the new Alternative Provision Funding Guidance for 2011-12.http://media.education.gov.uk/assets/files/pdf/a/alternative%20provision%20census%202012%20guidance.pdf

For the first time DfE has made it clear that local authorities can claim back funding for college “or other alternative provider” by entering home educated children on the Alternative Provision Census under the category of Not a School (NOT).

Funding can also be claimed where the LA chooses to pay for SEN support where a home educated child has special needs. DfE does not require the child to have a statement of SEN in order for this funding to be claimed.

The first page of the new Guidance draws attention to “updated guidance on elective home education” and also mentions that Appendix 3 (Guidance on groups to include as ‘Alternative Provision) provides “clarification of text in relation to elective home education.” This is in line with assurances given by Schools Minister Nick Gibb and civil servants from the Department for Education. Frequently Asked Questions will be on the DfE website shortly, but in the meantime please contact Lisa Thom at DfE.


Appendix 3: Definitions of Pupils Counted as Alternative Provision

Children who are electively home educated by their parents and are receiving significant financial support by the LA to attend a college of further education or other alternative provider, and/or in support of the child’s special educational needs.**
Yes Not a School (NOT)
Alternative Provision Guidance 2011-12 page 22 (Appendix 3)

Clarification Of “Pupils Taught At Home.”

The new Guidance explains that “pupils taught at home” does not mean home educated children, but refers to pupils who are registered at a school and who receive some tuition at home which is paid out of the school funding. The new Guidance also explains that while local authorities cannot claim funding for home educated children simply because these children are home educated, the LA can claim funding for home educated children where the council is paying for alternative provision or SEN support.

News Items of Interest to Home Education Professionals

The last update was sent out in September and drew attention to the House of Commons meeting, chaired by Graham Stuart MP and attended by Lisa Thom from the Department for Education, which looked at the issue of support from local authorities and access to further education and exams. Nick Duggan, Assistant Commissioning Director for 14-19s also gave a brief outline of the Sheffield Council pilot to improve access to FE.

Since the last update, I have put together a couple of pages displaying information about the numbers of home educated children known to local authorities in England. Click here for the map and here for a page of graphs showing numbers from 2005-2009. NB the numbers area complete set, as they only show data from 59 out of 152 LAs.

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Fiona Nicholson
Home Education Consultant – http://edyourself.org

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