Name: Peter Darby
Response on Behalf of an organisation: No
Keep response confidential: No
Allowed to contact in the future: Yes
Request a response acknowledgement: Yes
Request to be informed when the consultation results are published: Yes
Respondent Information Questions
Please mark an x in the box below that best describes you as a respondent.
1 Do you agree that where a school provides more than 20 hours of education per week, it should be treated as providing full time education and should be required to register with the Department for Education and Skills?
It depends entriely on your definition of education, which is still not defined in law.
Does it consist of the provision of learning materials and advice on their use? Probably not, as the student is providing themselves with the education, and the “school” is merely providing the means whereby they may educate themselves.
Also, the concept of even 20 hours of instruction a week as constituting a “full time ” education is to my mind ridiculous. What about the other 90+ hours that the child is awake in the week, are they assumed to be vegetating for that time?
2 Do you agree that where schools are providing fewer than 20 hours per week but the education provided constitutes the major part of that child’s education, they should be required to register with the Department for Education and Skills?
I feel it’s entriely ridiculous to say that even where a child is attending more than 20 hours a week that the majority of the education of the child is taking place in that institution. As long as they are awake and aware more than 40 hours a week, the child will be learning for more than twice the time they are in lessons.
Anecdotally, I know of many parents who feel that they provide the majority of the actual education of their children, despite the children being in “full-time” education of overcrowded class rooms and token efforts of instruction. The proposal to make these institutions, where children are actually getting the instruction that their parents want, fit the patterns of those instituions, where education is incidental to child management and control, is farcical.
3 Do you agree that where there is uncertainty as to whether a school is providing the major part of a child’s education we should rely on Ofsted’s opinions?
Since Ofsted is not qualified to quantify the education provided outside school, this is a ridiculous proposal. Whether it can be quantified anyway is questionable.
4 Have you any other comments?
As I understand it, this legislation has been introduced in order to force one institution to submit to Ofsted regulations and inspection, despite it providing less than a “full time” service to children. Not only is it a steam powered jackhammer to crack a particularly fragile hazelnut, it has serious and detrimental unintended consequences for any autonomous educators looking to co-operate with other autonomous educators.