Town hall Boses are warning that the Covid-19 pandemic may be fuelling an increase in the number of children who are moving out of full-time schooling.
The Local Government Association (LGA), which represents councils in England, have estimated that the number of children ‘missing school’ (depends on how that term is defined) could be around 280,000. They go on to explain that if at the point that councils are required to provide tuition for pupils absent for more than 15 days due to sickness was adopted as a measure, the number of children out of school would be almost one million.
According to the BBC, the LGA has seen significant rises in registrations for him-schooling in some areas between September 2019 and September 2020. For example, in Kent the figure rose by almost 200%, and in Leeds by almost 150%. Because of these alarming figures, it is calling for more funds to enable schools to support children and more powers to keep an eye on them if their parents do take them out of school.
Chair of the LGA’s children and young people board, Judith Blake, says the rising numbers of children not in education are hugely concerning. She added, “It is hard to tackle due a lack of council powers and resources, and flaws in an education framework ill-suited to an inclusive agenda.
“Children are arriving in schools with a combination of needs, often linked to disruption in their family lives, at a time when schools’ capacity to respond is stretched to capacity.”
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