https://dfemedia.blog.gov.uk/2017/03/28/education-in-the-media-28-march/

Education in the media: 28 March

In today’s news review we will look at a report from the National Children’s Bureau and a letter to the Secretary of State about the sharing of parental leave.

Missing Children

Today, Tuesday 28 March, the National Children’s Bureau have released a report into children missing from education. The report has found that not enough data is being collected nationally on the number of children going missing from education with no system in place to track them. This has been covered by the Guardian, the I and TES.

Our guidance is clear that local authorities have a duty to establish the identities of children in their area and have a legal obligation to intervene if it appears that a child of compulsory school age is not receiving a suitable education. Parents must notify the school if they are withdrawing their child for home schooling.

A Department for Education spokesperson said:

Every child should have access to the best possible education, regardless of background or circumstance. We have strengthened the law around what information schools must share with their local authority when a pupil is taken off the roll. This should better enable local authorities to ensure promptly that children are safe from harm and receiving a suitable education.

 

The duty lies with local authorities to make arrangements to establish the identities of children of compulsory school age in their area who are not registered pupils at a school and are not receiving suitable education otherwise.

Parental Leave

Today, Tuesday 28 March, a group of 43 MPs, led by David Lammy MP, have written an open letter to the Secretary of State criticising the Government’s rejection of the Women and Equalities Committee recommendations for a more effective policy on shared parental leave. The letter calls for the Government to reconsider these recommendations. This has been covered by the Guardian and the Independent.

No woman should be held back just because of her gender. We now have the lowest gender pay gap on record and that’s supported by our changes to flexible working, shared parental leave and 30 hours free childcare.

A Government spokesperson said:

Shared Parental Leave gives working families more choice and flexibility, helping to close the gender pay gap and enable fathers to play a more active role in caring for their children. This Government is committed to working with business and other groups to promote its benefits and help change attitudes on shared parenting.

 

This is still a very new policy, which the Government will continue to evaluate. The Committee’s recommendations will form a part of that evaluation.

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