(UK) England's Children's Commissioner looking into explosion in homeschooling parents

Feb 4, 2019, UK HuffPost: Children's Commissioner Calls For Compulsory Register Of 'Off The Grid' Home Schooled Children The Children’s Commissioner for England has called for a compulsory register of “off the grid” children following a huge increase in children disappearing from schools to be educated at home. Almost 60,000 children in England are being home schooled at any one time and the number of children who are known by councils to be home educated was 27% higher in 2018 than in 2017. It has risen by 20% in each of the last five years – doubling since 2013/14. … In a report published by Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, to coincide with a Channel 4 Dispatches documentary “Skipping School: Britain’s Invisible Kids”, which will air on Monday, new data shows that off-rolling could be responsible for the increase. … Hackney in London was one of the 11 areas the study looked at. Between 2016/17 and 2017/18, Hackney’s academies saw an increase in children moving into home education of 238%. The office also found that off-rolling was a concern to councils, with 88% saying they were worried about it, and that one in five children withdrawn from school have Special Educational Needs. The majority of councils (92%) also say they do not feel they have enough powers to assure the safety of home-educated children…. Many of these children are very vulnerable, have Special Educational Needs, or are unable to cope with a ‘one size fits all’ school system. “Schools should be for all children, including those with complex needs and those who struggle academically.”