Who are we?
We are a home educating family in Wales; like many families, we are juggling work, home education and family life and we all know how hectic that can be.
We have recently become very concerned about the general increase in government interventions into the freedom and privacy of home educating families. In Wales, we are particularly worried about the Welsh Government’s current consultation on draft guidance on home education, including proposals to regulate and encroach on our civil rights. These include the right to a private and family life, data protection rights and the rights of parents to exercise their parental responsibility to educate their children in accordance with the Education Act 1996.
Two weeks ago (late September), we decided that we had to do something to try and stop what we believe would be an unlawful encroachment by the Welsh Government on these rights, but time is against us – the consultation closes on 21 October 2019.
The last two weeks have been a roller-coaster. We felt we had to give priority to working on a brief for a Queens Counsel, and they are already preparing the legal opinion. Next we had to get a fundraising campaign going to pay the QC. As we do not use Facebook or other social media, it is only now that we have had chance to set up a website. We could not have done this in such a short time without the help of a few home educating individuals with experience in the field, and we are very grateful to them for their support.
We would also very much appreciate your support, if not by donating to the cause (see link below), then by spreading the word and completing the consultation response to the Welsh EHE Draft proposal to enable us all to defend the right to home educate without unlawful interference from the State.
Some of you may have already heard unconfirmed reports of local authorities overstepping their responsibilities by serving notices on home educating families, based on guidance which only exists in draft form at the present time. (Of course, such guidance should not become the basis of practice until it has been formally adopted.) We have no desire to become one such family, and therefore decided to remain anonymous for the time being. We hope that you can understand and respect our decision – maybe you would feel the same way yourself in the circumstances.
Please help us with the GoFundMe campaign, and please keep it in mind that any aggravation now is worth it so as to avoid the greater aggravation of having to justify your family life to a civil servant from the LA . . .
The charity is brand new and was set up specifically for this purpose. Small charities (income under £5000) do not have to register. Registration can take several months, which would be too late. However, charity law allows for small unregistered charities, provided they meet certain criteria including an expected income of less than £5,000 per annum. The Charity Commission provide (on this page) a sample Small Charity Constitution and our own governing document is based on this.
We sincerely hope that the HE community will pull together and support this initiative – it is too late for debating. Time has run out. It is better to do something than to do nothing.
“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again”
Thank you for showing an interest in our campaign.