Home education guidance: consultation analysis

Summary and analysis of the responses received to the home education guidance consultation.

1. Executive summary

1.1 Background

This report provides a summary of the analysis of responses submitted during the consultation on the draft home education guidance ("the guidance"). The consultation opened on 22 March 2022 and closed on 31 August 2022.

Following the collection of consultee responses and engagement exercises a mixed method approach was adopted to analyse the consultation findings. This ensured a comprehensive review of the qualitative and qualitative data. Please visit Scottish Government consultations to view responses to the consultation where consent has been given to publish the response.

1.2 Responses received

In total 98 responses were received as part of the consultation. Respondents were asked to self-identify as individuals or organisations.

  • 53 respondents self-identified as individuals
  • 45 respondents self-identified as organisations.

Responses from organisations were assigned appropriate categories to allow for further analysis.

  • Local authority (24 responses)
  • Education Stakeholder (11 responses)
  • Third sector (4 responses)
  • Other professional stakeholder (6 responses)

1.3 Summary of responses

The following provides a summary of the key outcomes of the questions:

  • 70% of respondents (62 responses) believed the purpose of the guidance to be clear; with a minority of respondents, 26% (23 responses) finding this not to be clear and 3% (3 responses) did not know; 10 respondents did not answer
  • 37% of respondents (29 responses) considered in person contact to be important; in contrast 51% of respondents (40 responses) did not consider this important, and a further 13% (10 responses) did not know; 19 respondents did not answer
  • 55% of respondents (50 responses) believed it was helpful for a local authority to offer a template or structure for education plans for parents; with 35% (32 responses) believing this was not helpful, and 10% (9 responses) did not know; 7 respondents did not answer.
  • 66% of respondents (51 responses) considered six weeks sufficient time for a local authority to respond to a request to withdraw; with 13% (10 responses) responding 'no' and 21% of responses (16 respondents) answering 'don't know'; 21 respondents that did not answer.

Key comments raised in the consultation responses included:

  • The importance of 'respectful relationships' that recognise home education as "an equal status option" to sending a child to school.
  • The central role that 'contact with home educators' has in upholding rights and ensuring that local authorities can fulfil their duties.
  • The experience of 'unequal access for home educating children and young people to qualifications and support'.
  • A range of opinions on a 'national approach to information management', highlighting the diversity of positives and negatives that such an approach may bring.

Next steps

This report provides the analysis of the views expressed in the consultation. As a result of the responses received and the issues raised the draft guidance will be given further consideration and refreshed guidance will be brought forward and published in due course.


Email: homeeducation@gov.scot

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