Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hampshire LA's Response to in-depth Questions

Independent Review of Home Education


Vulnerable children who are being home educated may pose an increased concern in terms of their safety, wellbeing and education. The independent review is seeking specific evidence on:

i) the prevalence of vulnerable children in your current EHE caseload;
ii) the type of vulnerability you have encountered in the past and / or are experiencing currently.

Your views as to what measures could be taken to improve the safety, wellbeing and education of these children are also sought.

In relation to (i) above:

1. What proportion of your current EHE caseload is known to Social Care in the following capacities? Please include open and closed cases.

Answer: This is not something we can respond to quickly and will not be able to meet your deadlines. We will, however, continue to pursue this data.

% of caseload

Section 17 enquiry[1]

Section 47 enquiry[2]

Section 37 (care orders)

Children who are or have been subject to child protection plan (or previously on the child protection register)

Other (please specify)

Total number of children

2. What proportion of your current caseload do you estimate have safeguarding implications?

Answer: We have no basis on which to make an estimate.

% of caseload

Total number of children

Parent with mental health issues

Child with mental health issues

Parent with substance misuse issues

Domestic violence

Child abuse or neglect (current or previous)

Other family circumstances

Concerns but cannot determine due to inability to see the child

Other (please describe)

Concerns about parental ability / capacity to undertake home education (not covered above). Please specify reason:

3. Request for case studies

In relation to (ii) above, please provide two or three anonymised case studies (more if you wish) describing cases where you have specific safeguarding concerns. Within your description please provide information detailing your specific concerns including any issues around obtaining relevant information about the child from the parent or child (including difficulties in gaining access to the child). Your views as to what measures could be taken to improve the safety, wellbeing and education of these children are also invited.

Answer: We are unable to provide case studies at this time.

Additional information

4. In your estimation, what proportion of your current caseload is not receiving any education? 4%

5. In your estimation, what proportion are home educating to avoid prosecution for attendance issues? 4%

6. What proportion of EHE youngsters became NEET (please use the latest data you have available and note the timeframe in your response).

Answer: We have yet to establish the protocols to enable us to make this judgement and therefore will be unable to provide an answer at this time. It is the first time such a request has been made.

[1] Do not include children who are disabled where there is no concern about parenting or quality of EHE.
[2] Do not include cases that did not lead to further action.


Independent Review of Home Education in England

Thank you for taking the time to complete this questionnaire about processes for supporting and monitoring home education. You may find it helpful to read through the questionnaire before attempting to complete it. Completion of the questionnaire is entirely voluntary. Responses will be completely confidential and used only for the purposes of the independent review.

The Government is committed to ensuring that systems for keeping children safe are as robust as possible. As part of this continuing commitment, an independent review of home education will assess whether the right systems are in place for ensuring that home educated children have access to the five Every Child Matters outcomes. This includes whether Government should do more to support local authorities in discharging their duties in relation to home educated children. The full terms of reference for the review are available on-line at

As organisations responsible for ensuring the safety, wellbeing and education of children and young people in your localities, we very much value your input into this review.

Please note, the Director of Children's Services and Lead Member for Children and Young People are asked to sign off the response to this questionnaire before submitting it.

Please return your completed questionnaire by Friday 6 February to

Or by post to:

Home Education Review
Level 2
Sanctuary Buildings
Great Smith Street
London SW1P 3BT

Thank you for taking time to respond to these questions.

Section One
About your local authority
Name of LA
Hampshire County Council

Tel. No of main contact
E-mail of main contact

Would you be willing to take part in the next phase of the research in March (including in-depth interviews with key personnel in your organisation)?

1. Who is involved in supporting and monitoring home educated children within the local authority and other agencies?

Team with main responsibility -

List all teams / professionals involved


1. Senior Advisor/Inspector Vulnerable Children & Young People

2. Inclusion Managers

3. Education Welfare Service

4. Standards; Improvement Branch and Educational Consultants

5. Health

6. Schools

7. Connexions

1. Strategic Leadership.
2. Liaise, correspond with parents, give advice, guidance and monitor regularly.
3. Assess home circumstances-safety.
4. Assess planned programme of education to be provided and review (usually annually).
5. Health will advise if they come into contact with family who are home educated and advise the LA. They will also advise the LA if a medical communication needs to be sent to educating at home families.
6. Schools will contact the LA if they have concerns about a family electing to home educate.
7. Connexions liaise with the LA about children of concern.

Describe how you ensure collaboration and communication between these teams / individuals

Once the LA has been advised that a parent wishes to home educate the LA will write to the family in an advisory capacity. The LA explains that the education provided must not only satisfy the requirements of the Education Act 1996 Section 7 but also must meet the child's physical, social, emotional and spiritual ability and aptitude. It must also address any special educational needs that they might have. This letter will be sent with an Information Booklet.

A referral will then be made to the Education Welfare Team (now integrated within our multi-disciplinary Locality Teams) who will carry out a "˜Home Circumstance" visit and subsequently provide a report of that visit forwarding a signed copy to the Education Inclusion Service. Where there is particular concern over a family electing to home educate a joint visit (Inclusion Manager & Education Welfare Officer) will be carried out.

The Education Inclusion Service will then write to the Inspector/Educational Consultant stating the priority of the visit. They will assess the planned educational programme and methods of delivery and provide a detailed report of that visit. A copy of the EWS report is forwarded to the Inspector/Educational Consultant prior to his visit.

All stages of the process are recorded on an Educating At Home database. The Inspector/Educational Consultant will usually recommend when further reviews should be carried out.

Copies of reports are forwarded to parents upon request.

Section Two

Data and Tracking

2. How many children are currently home educated in your local authority?

Registered with LA Non-registered children

Primary age
112 No Known

Secondary age
308 Not Known


3. Are these figures accurate or based on estimates?

Accurate X

Where do you get this data from?


How do you know the data are accurate?

Once parents who elect to educate at home have been notified to the LA Education Welfare will confirm parents intention in their report.

We currently have no way of tracking children if they are not notified to the LA.


What data have you used to arrive at this figure? (List all sources)

Each of the three areas in Hampshire have an Education Inclusion Database for children that have been notified to the LA by the above organisations.

Currently an Impulse based Social Inclusion Module is under development which it is hoped will capture a wider remit of those children who are home educated.

4. How confident are you in the accuracy of this data?

Very confident
Fairly confident X
Don't know
Not very confident
Not at all confident

5. How often does the local authority get updated data?

List frequency for each source separately

The Education Inclusion databases are reviewed regularly and all new children who are notified to this LA are recorded on it. In the future these pupils will be transferred to the Impulse Social Inclusion Module.

6. Thinking about your home educated population, what proportions have the following characteristics? Please say whether these figures are based on estimates or accurate data.

Characteristic Proportion
Delete as appropriate

Statement for SEN

Non-statemented SEN

Gypsy, Roma, Traveller heritage

Other BME Group (please state below)

Plymouth Brethren

7. Do you believe the local authority knows about all the home educated children in your area?

Yes, we are confident we know about all home educated children in the area
We think we know about the vast majority of home educated children in the area X

We probably do not know about a significant minority of home educated children in the area. However, we are confident that we know about those children who have been notified to the LA by parent, school or other source. We are uncertain of home educated children moving into area.

We probably do not know about a fair number of home educated children in the area

We probably do not know about a significant proportion of home educated children


Hampshire's response to a FOI:

Your request for information

I refer to your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 which was received on
30 June 2009. Attached is the formal response of Hampshire County Council (Notice of Determination). You requested:

I would like to request what information, views and statistics were provided by HCC to the Badman review into Elective Home Education, the results of which were submitted to the Sec of State Ed Balls earlier in July.

I would like to know what if any statistics are held by HCC as to the number of home educated children in the county, how many informed you by choice, how many are registered as being at risk and how this proportion compares with abuse in families whose children attend school. Additionally, for those families labelled as home educating, how many are illegal immigrants?

Children currently registered with Hampshire County Council as home-educated

Percentage that informed the Local Authority by choice
Approximately 97%

Number of home-educated children subject to a child protection plan
Under 10

Number of children educated in Hampshire schools

Number of children in Hampshire of mandatory school age and subject to a child protection plan

Number home-educated children who are illegal immigrants
The County Council does not record this information

Parents do not have to register a child as home educated, although they are encouraged to do so. They have to notify the school if they intend to withdraw their child to educate them at home and the school must then notify the local authority. As parents are not required to register home educated children (unless they are leaving a school’s rolls) there are no official statistics on the total number of home educated children in Hampshire.

The reason "under 10" is quoted for "number of home-educated children subject to a child protection plan" is because the DCSF do not publish any statistical breakdown of children's social care activity where the figure is less than 10. This is to comply with the Data Protection Act and prevent someone reading the information attempting to relate it to cases known to them. Hampshire County Council apply the same protocol when publishing any children's social care data.

The County Council's responses to the Independent Review of Home Education in England are attached.


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