Concerns for Nottinghamshire’s home schooled children

NEAABE110907e2, Nuthall councillors are opposing development on Nuthall greenbelt. Cllr Brian Watson, Cllr Maureen Towers, Cllr Jill Owen and Cllr Philip Owen.
NEAABE110907e2, Nuthall councillors are opposing development on Nuthall greenbelt. Cllr Brian Watson, Cllr Maureen Towers, Cllr Jill Owen and Cllr Philip Owen.

Bullying, mental health problems and sexual exploitation are just some of the reasons youngsters are missing out on a proper education.

Nottinghamshire County Council has raised concerns that more than 600 children in the county were registered as being home educated in 2017 – up 170 per cent since 2013.

The Children and Young People’s Committee is now calling for a reduction in the number of pupils, particularly at key stage three and above.

Committee chairman Councillor Philip Owen is urging the Regional Schools Commissioner to look at how academies are being supported and challenged regarding children missing education.

He said: “With regard to elective home education cases, it is clear that the majority of children are receiving ‘suitable’ education and they are safe. However, there is a small but growing number of cases where the education provided is unsuitable with potential safeguarding risks.”

The council’s Elective Home Education Team identified a significant number of pupils who have been withdrawn from school for a range of reasons including:

n persistent low attendance

n unresolved bullying

n professional referral of safeguarding concerns

n sexualised behaviours in children at risk of child sexual exploitation

n family issues such as domestic violence, addiction, adult mental health needs

Cllr Owen said: “I will personally be writing to the Regional Schools Commissioner requesting that he addresses our concerns when he visits the Children and Young People’s Committee in February 2018.”