Well, this is turning out to be fun. And educational too – there has been a lot of practical law and politics for Emily this week, as she has investigated the situation and given her informed consent for us to challenge Lincs County Council as far as we possibly can, including through the courts if necessary.
I’ve received a ton of helpful advice, input and support from numerous people online, for which I’m very grateful. There are some amazing people out there who have been fighting these battles for years…. so sad that it should be necessary.
I have replied to Debbie Barnes’ response to my original complaint: you can see my reply here: Lincs CC 28 April 12. Essentially, I’m taking the complaint to the next stage, Chief Executive, but I’ve asked her to clarify their legal intentions given the shockingly antagonistic statement she quoted from the council’s legal department. Of course, I won’t get a straight answer, but I will be interested to see them dig themselves a deeper hole.
In the highly likely event that I don’t get a satisfactory response from the Chief Executive when I take it to him/her, I will take it to the Local Government Ombudsman. I’m about to contact my MP (wish me luck – he said in writing a number of years ago that while he respects my right in law to home educate, he personally believes that all children belong in school….) and my county councillor also. Let’s see where it goes.
—— added later —–
Meanwhile, I’m trying to get somewhere with CFBT, the organisation which has effectively been given control of Lincolnshire’s elective home education “services”. I sent this over a week ago to Andy Breckon, the head of what is engagingly called Lincolnshire School Improvement Services – of course, I have now had a reply from Debbie Barnes, but had not had at the time. I have still had no response from Breckon, and have complained to Christina Payne, Head of Contracts and Business Services at CFBT head office, about his failure to even acknowledge the email. She assured me she would chase it up. As yet, zilch. I will be chasing again next week.