Advice for parents or carers considering home education for their child

If you have questions about elective home education (EHE), this information will cover what to do if you are considering home educating your child, advice if you are already a home educator or you want your child to return to school.

I’m considering home educating my child - what do I need to know?

Home education is a big decision with a lot to consider.

While parents and carers retain the right to educate their children at home, the local authority remains responsible for ensuring that no child is missing education. This is a balance we try to strike sensitively through partnership working with home educators in Nottinghamshire.

The links below will help you to weigh up whether home education is the right choice for your child and family, and inform you about local policy and national guidance.

The policy underpins the way the service operates and public consultation is undertaken prior to it being agreed.

Guidance for parents and carers and local authorities can be found at GOV.UK's Department for Education Guidance: Elective Home Education

I'm already a home educator and looking for advice

If you are already a home educator and looking for advice on our home educator offer or other advice about home education, please see our page:

Advice for parents or carers that are already home educators

I want my child to return to school

You can apply for a school place at any time if you would like your child to return to school. We run a co-ordinated application process for some schools, although others will require that you directly apply to them. See the Nottinghamshire scheme for confirmation about where to submit your request on the apply to change school 'in-year' page.

You can find information on the schools admission hub about the timescales in which schools should respond to applications and what to do if you are unsuccessful.

If your child requires a school place because they are not in receipt of suitable education at home, then the local authority must provide one. If schools are oversubscribed then this may not be at a school of your choice and it may be necessary to agree a placement through the Fair Access Protocol.

If you choose to return your child to school or your child needs to return to school, one of our professional practitioners can support you through this process. Please get in touch to request support.


Finding a suitable school for your child’s circumstances is very important. Parents are advised to submit four preferences and are reminded that each request is treated individually by its own merit using the admission arrangement for that school. A single preference will not receive any further priority or guarantee. Put as much information as you believe is relevant by placing your preferences in your priority order.

Once you have been offered a place you have 14 days to accept it. If you do not accept the offer within this time, the place may be withdrawn and offered to the next person on the waiting list, so the advice is to accept the offer, even if you wish to pursue another request, for example, at appeal.

Tips to help your child's transition back to school

The information below will help with your child's move back to mainstream education. Find out more about how you can prepare:

Once a place has been allocated

Follow the tips below for what to do once you child has been allocated a school place:

  • Look on the school website and share all the positives with your child
  • Include your child in the planning for the return to school and ensure all discussions are positive
  • Talk to your child about what they are looking forward to and also encourage them to share any worries they have - either in conversation or through writing or drawing

Things to talk about at the admissions meeting

When you have your admissions meeting with the school your child has been allocated a place at it is important that you share:

  • Your child’s interests and strengths
  • Any worries your child may have about starting at a new school
  • Your concerns in respect of any additional needs and request a meeting with the SENCO team if needed

If possible, it is also helpful to have your child attend the meeting.

The SEND Local Offer has support and advice about strategies and support services that school can involve.

A week before the return to school

Follow the tips below to get ready for the week before your child returns to school:

  • Start to prepare your child for a school routine e.g. meal times and bedtimes
  • Practice the journey to school, think about how your child is going to travel (for example, walk, bus or other means of transport)
  • Get your child to try on the school uniform and P.E. kit in advance

Year 6 to year 7 transition and returning to a secondary school place

When transitioning from year 6 to year 7 or returning to secondary school, you may find it helpful to practice some of the following independent skills with your child:

  • Paying for items in the shop
  • Packing the school bag the night before
  • Taking the journey to school

Visit Moving on up at Childnet for more tips and information for parents and children on transitioning from year 6 to year 7.

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