Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I'm Having a Day Off. Honest.

They say a week is a long time in politics... well the past 10 days have been a very long time!

The fight that home educators are engaged in at the moment has really consumed those days. Monday 12th saw Graham Badman and DCSF up in front of the Select Committee (if you watched online, that was my head in the bottom right corner of the screen!). I went along and made copious shorthand notes which thankfully I haven't had to try and transcribe as the official transcript is available online!

The next day was the mass lobby. Roarke went up to this and helped out as a steward. Some 450 home educating parents, children and young people attended and it took over 2 1/2 hours for them to get through security and in to lobby their MPs.

It was such a massive acheivement and it is a shame that there was only one bit of TV coverage.

Well done to everyone who took part.

The next day Autism in Mind, Education Otherwise, Home Education Advisory Service, Home Education Centre, and a pro-Badman home educating parent, gave evidence followed by the Association of Directors of Children’s Services, National Children’s Bureau, NSPCC, and West Sussex County Council. Again, you could watch it online and read the transcript.

Families were beginning to feel some stirings of hope at the way in which some on the Committee appear to have got their heads around the issues and begun to understand the concerns and outrage of home educators. An indication of this was the Chair's decision to hold an informal session on Monday 19th at which a number of home educating parents, their children, and home educated young people were invited to attend. By all accounts, it was a positive experience with the children and young people as always being the one piece of evidence you just can't ignore - home education WORKS.

That same evening, the consultation on the monitoring and registration of home educators closed with at least 5342 submissions made. The e-petition also closed, with 4,884 signatories.

We will NOT be bullied!

Tuesday evening, Education Otherwise's Government Policy Group took the battle into the heart of Westminster by holding a briefing event for MPs. A team of twenty eight people had formed a working party to arrange the event. Speakers included Ian Dowty, and Dr Alan Thomas. I need to get my head around writing the event up properly, but it was certainly a positive event.

Now today I'm meant to be taking a day off... so I'm not really online, writing this...


Ross Mountney said...

A truly magnificent effort Ann, congratulations. Ross

Jemmo said...

Ann! Step away from the computer! Now!! ;)


Nic said...

Hurrah for all of us! Well done Ann for all your massive contributions and achievements.

Elizabeth said...

I don't know how you made it through the week! I was exhausted and we barely did anything, especially compared with your week!! I did have fun with the 'final countdown of submissions'!!

Thanks for all your contribtions to this battle!

Dawny said...

thank you Ann for battling on, i just hope they listen to us all. of course you'll have stepped away from the pc by now so won't be able to read this *wink. Thinking about you, d xxx

Lisa G said...

Thanks Ann for all your hard work, although we are not immediately affected in Wales, we are by no means complacent about what is happening in England and realise it could easily be us next so you have our full support and best wishes.