According to a recent BBC survey carried out last year, there has been a 40% increase in numbers of children in the UK being home-schooled within the past three years. Many parents reported feeling dissatisfied with mainstream schooling, stating that British schools nowadays are failing to accommodate children with extra support needs.
Other popular reasons for choosing home-education are bullying, children getting distracted in classroom environments, mental health issues such as depression and anxiety and mental or physical disabilities which impair the child’s ability to access or participate in regular school.
While most families who now home-school have previously experience traditional schooling, many have opted for home-based education from the beginning due to philosophical reasons or simply personal preference. This choice is becoming more and more popular as young families are realising the benefits of home education.
UK Home-education Law
Children in the UK are not legally required to attend a physical school. Although they are also not required to follow the national curriculum, they must receive a ‘suitable education’ from the age of five years old. There is no system currently in place to register children who are home-schooled, however due to the increase in families turning to home-education there have been talks of implementing this so that the government can keep track.
If a parent or guardian decides they would like to home-school their child, they must contact the school to let them know. By law, the school must accept this if they are removing the child from the school completely, however they may refuse if the parent would like their child to attend the school on a part-time basis.
Unfortunately, at the moment only a few of councils in the UK have the resources to offer support to families who home-educate, which means most parents are left to figure it out for themselves. Hopefully, however, this is likely to change as home-schooling statistics continue to rise.
With online schooling, children of school age are taught by fully qualified and experienced teachers in live online interactive lessons. Classes are taught following the highly accredited English National Curriculum, and students are guided and supported through Key Stage 2, Key Stage 3 and iGCSE syllabi.
Class sizes are kept small to ensure that each child receives a more individualised style of learning, and teachers are better able to identify and meet each child’s unique needs. This means that each child’s learning is carefully supported, and progress can therefore be made more rapidly.
How online education can support home-schooling families
The primary function of online schooling is to support families who are home-educating. Online-education provides the structure and content of a British Curriculum education, while retaining the freedom, flexibility and all the other benefits that home-based learning has to offer.
Here are three ways in which online education can help support home-schooling families:
1. A clear structure for home-based education
One of the many key benefits of an online, home-based education is that it allows home-schooling families a greater sense of normality. Often, home-schooling can leave children and families feeling alienated from mainstream education, as children are not always taught the same material as their peers and parents need to commit most of their time to teaching.
Lessons at My Online Schooling follow the English National Curriculum, so pupils are kept up to speed with topics and objectives in traditional schools across the country. Additionally, lesson planning, timetables and all other organisational matters to do with education are taken care of, just as they would be at a physical school.
Because online schooling models itself on a traditional school, families are provided with a clear structure and routine for the day - an essential aspect for the success of every child’s learning. This also means parents’ time is freed up so that they can go to work or take care of other day-to-day responsibilities which may not be possible when they’re focused on teaching.
2. Interaction and collaboration with fellow students
As children who are home-schooled do not tend to attend classes with other children outside of their families, the social aspect of school is often a concern for parents who decide to take their child out of traditional schooling.
My Online Schooling strives to ensure that children don’t miss out on anything that a traditional school offers, therefore lessons are fully interactive, and students can talk to their fellow students as well as their teacher via the chat box or their microphone. The ‘raise hand’ features allows students to take turns to ask and answer questions, and breakout rooms are provided for small group work, where pupils learn to collaborate with each-other on tasks to later share with the class.
In addition to this, there is also a common room feature where students can get together and chat with one another about their day. If students have interests aside from what they learn in lessons, My Online Schooling offers a diverse array of free after-school clubs such as coding club, debating club, creative writing club and journalism club.
3. Individualised learning tailored to your child’s needs
A major complaint among families opting out of mainstream education is that class sizes are becoming too large, making it difficult for teachers to give each child the attention they need and deserve.
My Online Schooling combats this issue by ensuring class sizes never exceed 20 pupils at a time. Smaller class sizes provide a more personalised learning experience, and teachers are better placed to adapt to each individual child’s pace and style of learning as needed. It also means there is less chance for distractions and disruptions, creating a more focused and productive environment for pupils to learn in.
Our teachers also have a wealth of experience working with children who have special educational needs and/ or mental or physical health issues. Upon enrolling, teachers are made aware of each child’s situation and can therefore provide an individualised education which is sensitive and accommodating to their specific needs.
Online schooling provides the perfect platform for children to receive an education of quality from home, or anywhere that has a stable Wi-fi connection. Families are provided with a clear, comprehensive structure to their home-schooling day, and follow the highly sought-after English National Curriculum taught at traditional schools across the country as well as internationally.
Home-schooled students and families are supported every step of the way, from Key-Stage 2 to A-level exams, preparing them for a professional future as citizens of this new technology-focused world.