I thought that readers might be interested to hear what Ian Dowty has to say on the subject of flexi-schooling. As readers probably know, he is a lawyer whose own son gained a place at Oxford after being home educated. This is a message that he sent to Alison Sauer;
Flexi-schooling is legally possible (apparently), but the bottom-line is that it's at the discretion of a school's head who can start it or stop it at any time. You can't make any head do it, whether they "refuse" for good or bad or policy (whether local or central) reasons. That would be the case even if "or otherwise" included flexi-schooling, which is about as far as you can go, surely? If I've missed something, let me know and I'll gladly reconsider.
In my view it is better by far to leave the legal position alone and to win hearts and minds over to flexi-schooling with solid examples of how it works and the projects/schools based on it. If you want to make it something a parent can insist on, it seems to me that you have to address the problem that it might deprive a place to a child whose parents want full-time school. Alternatively you could perhaps argue that it could alleviate the problem of a shortage of places if 2 parents wanting flexi-schooling shared a school place.
You might want to point out to the DfE that its latest guidance issued on 22nd March seems to be wrong where it says " Pupils should be marked absent from school during periods when they are receiving home education." Since they are absent with leave of the head they cannot be "absent" and should not be marked as such - s444(3) Education Act 1996 makes it clear that "The child shall not be taken to have failed to attend regularly at the school by reason of his absence from the school— (a) with leave". If a child is marked as absent, the LA can use the register as evidence in court that the child is not attending regularly and this might give rise to an erroneous prosecution of a child who is actually deemed by s444(3) not to be absent. They ought to leave the law alone too :)