The Welsh government took a recent snapshot of homeschool numbers.
Numbers of pupils educated at home rises in Wales as parents turn their backs on schools
But union says sharp rise in home educated young people must be put into context in terms of overall numbers
The number of Welsh pupils being educated at home rose sharply last year, research has shown.
Numbers went up by almost 12% as 117 more children of compulsory school age received home tuition during 2012-13 than the previous year.
Figures released by the Welsh Government show that 1,103 pupils were taken out of local authority education to be taught at home last year – compared to 986 in 2011-12.
The numbers above were quoted by Wales Online‘s Gareth Evans.
The National Association of Schoolmasters/Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT) representative was quoted and he was in defensive mode:
Rex Phillips, Wales organiser for teachers’ union NASUWT, said the proportion of school-aged pupils being educated other than at school was just 0.26% of the total population.
He said: “The most affected age group are 14 to 18-year-olds and this group accounts for a large proportion of the rise. The percentage of pupils educated at home represents just 0.24% of the pupil population and based on the pupil population, the percentage rise is just 0.03%.
“Clearly, these statistics demonstrate that most parents, pupils and young people value a school-based education. There does not appear to be any pattern as the increases in home education relate mainly to three authorities.”
Most home educators are only trying to find the best education for their children. They generally do not care about the numbers, except in local support. But the teacher unions do, and their powerful lobby then becomes our problem.
Graham Badman’s commissioned and notorious 2009 Report to the Secretary of State on the Review of Elective Home Education passed along the NASUWT’s views:
The NASUWT maintains the existence of a right to home educate is anomalous with the clear emphasis in Government policy of ensuring that all children and young people can benefit from educational provision where teaching and learning is led by qualified teachers in well resourced and fit for purpose modern educational settings.
Starting around 7:40, Mike Fortune-Wood discusses the Badman Report, the theories on home education and the dangers of increased home education statutes. From the 2011 European Home Education Conference:
More from HEM News & Commentary on Welsh homeschool coverage this year: Welsh Homeschool Registration On Hold