§ Mr. Pawsey
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science how many children are being educated out of school and in the home.
§ Mr. Pawsey
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) what provision exists for the adequate supervision of those educated out of school and in the home;
(2) what guidance his Department has issued to local education authorities about how they should ensure that those educated at home are receiving adequate education;
(3) what guidance his Department has issued to local education authorities about the action to be taken by a local education authority when evidence of inadequate education at home is brought to its notice;
(4) what action is taken by his Department to monitor the performances of local education authorities in the supervision of children's education at home;
(5) what guidance the Department has issued to local education authorities about the criteria to be used in assessing the quality of education given in the home and to satisfy themselves that the parents are suitable persons to educate their children out of school and in the home;
(6) what arrangements exist when children who are educated at home leave the local education authority area for another; what steps are taken to ensure that the subsequent local education authority is aware that children being educated at home have moved to its area; and how these children are then to be academically assessed.
§ Mr. Dunn
Each local education authority has a duty under section 37 of the Education Act 1944 (as amended) to satisfy itself that the parents of a child of compulsory school age belonging to its area, whether newly arrived or otherwise, are fulfilling their duty under section 36 to ensure that he receives efficient full-time education suited to his age, ability and aptitude, by attending school or otherwise. There is no difference in the criteria for assessing school or home tuition. If necessary, authorities can enforce this duty on parents by school attendance order proceedings under section 37. These duties are straight-forward and, as for many others under the Education Acts, no need is seen for either particular guidance or the monitoring of authorities' performance. However, if my right honourable Friend were to find that an authority had failed to discharge its duty, he could issue a corrective direction under section 99 of the 1944 Act.