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Home Schooling in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

Unlike in England, home schooling in other parts of the UK has certain requirements that must be followed. None of these are very difficult, and if you would like any further help or advice, please don’t hesitate to contact our Home Schooling team. SLT has also produced extensive guidance about home schooling in general which may be of interest to families all over the UK.

Home schooling in Scotland

In Scotland, families who want to home school, or take exams outside of school, need to ask for permission from their local authority (unless they have never been to a Scottish state school). This is the same if you are planning to do online home schooling or home schooling for exams. Permission is usually granted, unless there is a safeguarding consideration in which case more investigation may be required). You can read all of the detail on the My Gov Scotland website. A great resource to help with Scotland home schooling is the charity Schoolhouse and there is more information at the Scottish Home Education Forum and Home Education Scotland. There is no requirement for you to be a qualified teacher.

SLT can help with home schooling in all parts of the UK by offering online or live in tutors.

Home schooling in Wales

The Welsh government has some excellent guidelines for home schooling your child. In short, there are no particular legal requirements. You do not need to be a qualified teacher but you do have a responsibility to make sure your child receives an education that is age-appropriate and full time and suitable for any Special Educational Needs they may have. You can read more about SEN and home schooling on our main home schooling page. You do not have to follow the National Curriculum, but it is a helpful guide and many parents do choose to make use of it, at least as a skeleton on which to base their own curriculum. As with all home school programmes, you don’t have to stick to any particular hours or timetable.

Home schooling in Northern Ireland

As with Scotland and Wales, you don’t need to have any teaching requirements to teach your child at home. You do need to write and inform your local education authority but as long as you are providing an age and ability appropriate full-time education your request should not be denied.  Home Education Northern Ireland is a useful organisation that provides guidance on the slightly different situation for home schooling in Northern Ireland;  in some cases, Local Authorities are insisting on annual check up’s, which you may not wish to have. It has been suggested that you can simply reply with written reports of your child’s progress or you can arrange a meeting with an EA officer without your child being present.

  • How do I start home schooling in Scotland?

    You first need to ask your local authority for permission to withdraw from school. You will need to demonstrate that you have put into place a suitable programme of home education.

  • Is home schooling allowed in Scotland?

    Yes absolutely – it is your responsibility to provide an all round education and you will need to demonstrate how you are going to do this.

  • How does home schooling work in Scotland?

    If you want to home school in Scotland, you simply need to ask the local authority for permission to remove your child from school, and demonstrate that you have a suitable teaching programme in place.

  • Can I home school my child in Wales?

    Yes, it is perfectly legal to home school your child in Wales. Just inform the local education authority and be prepared to show them your plan to provide an appropriate education.

  • Is home schooling legal in Northern Ireland?

    It is perfectly legal to home school your child in Northern Ireland. Just inform the local education authority and be prepared to show them your plan to provide an appropriate education. You may be visited annually by an Education Authority Agent.

How can SLT help?

Simply Learning Tuition can provide a fully bespoke home school service for all exam boards and curricula. We always work on a personal basis, introducing tutors who are highly qualified home school specialists. Many of them have worked with SLT for several years.
We have more than 10 years’ experience creating home school programmes that work for the individual child; whatever their age or academic ability. Tuition can take place in person, or online and can fit around your child’s schedule to make learning work in harmony with their lifestyle and needs. Lessons are always designed to be fun and engaging.