A trio of mums from Corby say parents shouldn’t be scared to take their children out of school after setting up a group to support those wishing to provide their offspring with a home education.
Corby Home Educators was founded this year after Jackie Mannion, Kelly Shiveral and Tracy Fraser felt there was no help available to parents who have decided to remove their children from mainstream education.
The group’s expansion has been a rapid one, with more than 60 families now involved.
It is estimated that more than 50,000 children are home-schooled in the UK, for a variety of reasons.
Group chairman Jackie Mannion started home-schooling her daughter after she began suffering from social anxiety.
And while she appreciates that some people associate home education with a lack of social skills, she says it has worked wonders for the confidence of the one child she has home-schooled.
She said: “If a child doesn’t fit into the system it’s very textbook and they just don’t seem to be given the opportunity to be individual.
“My daughter struggles in the school environment and since we took her out she’s come on leaps and bounds.
“Before she wouldn’t even entertain being in a social environment and now she’s taught herself how to swim and is above her national reading and maths levels.
“She’s completely social in that respect and has made plenty of friends.
“There are plenty of success stories surrounding home-schooled children and it really does have its benefits.
“There is nothing Corby-based to help families who struggle with this aspect of life and that’s why we’ve started this group.”
Kelly Shiveral decided to start home-schooling her children after she felt they were not being challenged enough.
And she believes the lack of a curriculum is beneficial to her child’s learning.
She said: “Your child gets to learn what they’re interested in and what they want to learn as opposed to what they’re forced to learn, which is a big thing for them and makes them happy.
“Bullying was a big thing for me when taking the plunge and pulling them out of school, I didn’t like the way it was dealt with.
“From the minute they get up in the morning now to the minute they go to bed they are learning about a various topics.
“Our group will give children a chance to socialise with other kids like them and offer things and opportunities that you can’t offer at home.
“If anyone is considering home-schooling, they should really think about it because it’s such a big decision to make for you and your child.”
Tracy Fraser spent six months deliberating over whether to take her daughter out of the school system.
And she says it has made her so much happier.
She said: “Her nature had become really withdrawn and miserable and although it was a really hard decision I still back it 100 per cent.
“You go with the flow and don’t have to follow set hours but we still cover the main core subjects of English, maths and science.
“This group will really help with the social aspect and we didn’t realise how big the need was for it.
“Everyone does it for different reasons and I’m really glad we did.”
Parents who wish to home-school their children must by law provide an ‘efficient education’ that prepares them for life in society and enables them to achieve their potential.
They must also notify Northamptonshire County Council of their decision.
To find out more about the group, email email@example.com.