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Parents' rights and responsibilities

Parents are responsible for making sure their children receive an education, either in school or at home.

Find out what's legally required and what rights parents have in decisions and policies that affect their child's school life.


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School attendance

What's expected, when it's okay to be absent, and how parents can support good attendance. Find out more
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Exclusion from school

School exclusions are rising. The experts at Child Law Advice explain what to do if your child is excluded. Find out more
News, views and FAQs

What if my child is taken ill at school

If your child is taken ill at school, or is involved in an accident, the school has a duty to inform parents as quickly as possible. Schools can act in place of the parent to make emergency decisions such as taking a child to hospital if immediate treatment is necessary, and parents must be informed straight away. See more on the Keeping children safe in education statutory government guidance which sets out how schools and staff must legally safeguard their pupils.

Can I withdraw my child from specific classes?

The only classes that parents are legally allowed to withdraw their child from are Religious Education (including group worship activities such as assemblies) and Sex and Relationship Education; (this includes forthcoming legislation, due for consultation in autumn 2017, though there will be an exception for relationships education at primary, which will be compulsory). Parents are not able to exclude their child from any classes that are part of the curriculum

Blog: Life after school breaks down

Maya tells us about her adventures in home-schooling her autistic son and role as mum, teacher, advocate, cook, cleaner and general supporter.

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