Over on the HE-UK and EO lists there is much anxiety about the possibility of an eight hour visit from the local authority. This is because when the DCSF were working out the costings, they allowed for eight hours of time spent on a visit. They have to do it this way, so that they can work out the total cost of the enterprise. So some time will be spent in preparing for the visit and travelling there and back. More time will be spent by administrative staff in setting up the meeting and working out which lucky parent's turn it is to be so favoured. Writing up the notes from the visit and turning them into a professional looking report will take time. So will filing the report and forwarding annual returns to the DCSF. For example when we had visits, the woman had to travel from Colchester to the edge of London. She allowed two hour travel time just to start off with.
I am astounded that anybody could possibly imagine that a local authority officer would be arriving at the house at nine in the morning and setting up shop until five in the afternoon! I was always enthusiastic about talking about my daughter's education, but even I would have found conversation flagging after the first hour or two.
Actually, the notes which talk about this 1X8 hours business look as though they have been put together by some complete bloody fools. For instance they say;
"LAs tell us that home educators who avoid interaction with the local authority tend to be providing inferior education"
Now how on earth could the local authority know this if they were not having any contact with a family? More research needed there, I fancy. Similarly, they repeat this lame allegation;
"We do know, however, that post compulsory education, home educated young people are 4 times more likely not to be in education, employment or training than other young people."
All that this means is that the young people who have been home educated are not registered at a college or sixth form, nor are they working or in training. Their home education is probably just continuing between the ages of sixteen and eighteen, but as far as the local authority is concerned, that makes them a NEET!