You'll have heard about the OFSTED report on how LAs deal with home edders. That was its supposed aim; however, it said very little about how LAs deal with home edders and some LAs are just dreadful.
They want you to let them know what your child is doing. They want you to know what your child has done. They want to know how you are implementing your educational philosophy. They want to see your child to catechize him or her as he or she takes a test in English, Trigonometry and Ancient Botswanan while writing an essay on the recent lessons learned by the three main political parties on the hung Parliament, and, at the same time, signing copies of his or her new book (one of a trilogy) for a fervent and grateful public.
They don't notice the flush of health on your child's glowing cheeks. They don't see your baby's twinkling eyes as your little one realises that she can go to the toilet when she needs to (no matter if inspector is 'monitoring' or not). They don't understand the liberation that comes from no pressure and no stress when you are programmed to learn and someone forces you to learn something that you wouldn't have chosen to look at. They think that punishment drives children to receive an education when, actually, enjoyment and interest engender education in a child who chooses to educate him or herself.
Really, I can't get over the nerve of it. The LAs don't suffer any form of punishment for allowing any number of children who sit in class (or don't) and exhibit not a jot or a tittle of learning through ten-fifteen years of various teacher information-donation or other type of schooling. Yet, they demand to come into our houses and see everything that is wrong with what we do which they will then put right by returning your child to the one education - the schooling.
Where is their commentary on how badly some home educating families are treated by LAs? Where is their report on how people have had to flee the country because of the absolutely diabolical demands and bullying from the LA? Where is their acknowledgement that LAs generally have no clue about laws in place around home education? Where is their lambasting for representatives of a public body who repeatedly harass and upset families whose only fault is that they have chosen to act responsibly and take their children away from failing schools or the torment dealt out by bullies, child or adult?
OFSTED had the opportunity to tell some truth. They failed.
OFSTED had the chance to rebuke and reform the LAs. They failed.
OFSTED had an occasion to shed some light on the dark corners of LA bullying and misunderstanding of home education. They failed.
That's an 'F' from me then.
OFSTED report link and MP Graham Stuart's blistering response
Thanks to Maire whose timely blogging in a wonderful way helps to keep me connected and calm.
And please check out this excellent expose from