On 16/12/09 15:05, "Rachel Dolling"
> > Hi
> > I was hoping that someone might be able to help me. I work in Bristol
> have a family who have moved to Hampshire. Mum would not give us any
> i.e address, district or what education she was providing for her child.
> was home educating in Bristol. I was wondering if mum has been in contact
> you? She will not answer her phone anymore after putting the phone down on
> on several occasions.
> > Regards
> > Rachel Doling
> > Children Missing Education
> > Bristol Education Welfare
> > CYPS
> > Tel: 0117 3533686
> > Tel:0117 3532749
The general opinion among the home educating parents who have read this email is that at the very least, the officer who sent it has a frightful cheek. I cannot help but wonder though, what motives they imagine this woman has in trying to track down this parent.
In the first place, local authorities have a duty to identify children in their area who are missing from education. They certainly have no duty to try and identify children in other parts of the country! In other words, once this family are known to have moved out of Bristol, the local authority there is in the clear. They can close their file and let somebody else worry about whether children in this family are in fact receiving a suitable education. Th fact that Rachel Doling, the local authority officer who sent this email, is not adopting this strictly legalistic interpretation of the situation, suggests to me that she is actually concerned about the child in question.
Of course, it may be sheer busybodying, but if so it is hard to see what she gets from it. I get the impression that she is genuinely worried about this child and that she is trying to alert as many people as possible to the fact that there is something wrong about the situation. She must have been pretty desperate to email a bunch of home educators and expect that they would treat her enquiry seriously!
It seems plain that this mother has done a moonlight flit, leaving no forwarding address and moved to a completely different part of the country without leaving any forwarding address. This in itself is a very odd thing to do and makes one wonder what is going on. She evidently is very keen not to be seen by anybody from the local authority or even provide any information. This is a little strange too.
Of course, this is not the Soviet Union and our citizens are free to move where they will, without telling "the authorities". Even so, there is something distinctly odd about moving like this from one end of the country to the other without leaving any details. My guess is that Rachel Doling has cause to be worried about this child that she is not sharing with others, reasons that she feels the family need to be seen. I doubt that it is just an overzealous employee of a local authority making a fuss for the sake of it.