Passionate about school at home

21st March 2003 at 00:00
I APPLAUD much of Libby Purves's Last Word (TES, March 7) where she vents her exasperation with the "righteous, prissy and bossy instincts" of Government education policy which equates parents who take a planned holiday in term-time with those who condone "unattended shopping mall truancy". I am grateful to her too for debunking the persistent government misinformation that school is compulsory.

On home-education, however, she does rather imply that home-educators are motivated to give only the minimal amount of conventional education to their offspring. While there is a wide range of philosophies within the home education world, a growing number of home-educators hold conventional educational values every bit as passionately as the Government.

They withdraw their children from school because it is not working for them. Reports of bullying abound while the constant testing not only distorts the purpose of learning to memorised jargon but leaves children stressed out and defensive.

Anne Longmuir

29 Woodcote Green

Fleet, Hampshire

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