Thursday, 30 April 2015
Visit from the Local Authority 30.4.15
So today was the day.
*The* visit from the Local Authority.
I can't say that I was overly worried because I know the LA don't actually have any legal obligation towards myself and Barnaby. I think that the fact I was more worried over the state of the house than what he was going to say about home ed speaks volumes. Was up at 5am in a panic about cleaning (don't worry, I got over it and went back to sleep instead - quick whip round with the hoover had to suffice!) But there was an element of panic that he was going to waltz in, tell me I'd got it all wrong, I'd ruined Barnabys life and that he'd recommend I send him back to school immediately. Which I knew was nonsense, but y'know, it took me 6 attempts to pass my driving test. Me and 'assessments' never go well and despite the letter saying 'informal chat', you can't help but feel they are going to cart your kid into care because there is layer of dust on the top of the wardrobe.
He explained, as I knew, that he couldn't really give me any direct help or resources, but if necessary would advise me on any areas he thought might be a concern and then point me in the direction of local support.
I was quite honest and told him that although I've downloaded a curriculum to look at, I haven't bothered even looking at it yet. I am very vaguely working off a tick sheet of 'what your child should know at the end of Year 2' checklist. And when I say vaguely I mean I printed it off and it's somewhere..... somewhere.
Barnaby showed him some work, explained all the weekly learning topics on the lounge door, showed off his artwork which he was very impressed with. I smiled at his suggestion that some children tend to work best learning through project work rather than specific Maths/English/Science so I proceeded to tell him that that was exactly the way we work and gave him examples of how I'd plan a topic to incorporate all of the learning involved.
We showed him the garden diary, the earth topic, worksheets, drawing, and the Roll a Robot game which he was most impressed with!
He didn't once ask about socialisation, even though Barnaby is an only child of a single Mum and it'd be easy for us to be quite insular. I volunteered the info of all the social aspects we cover in a week and he could tell that Barnaby was having a busy and well rounded education. Which is great! This Mumma is ON IT!
After half an hour nattering Barnaby went and showed off his desk in the summerhouse.
The Parent Advisor (such is his title) had finished his notes and said he'd write to me in the week.... And I then proceeded to give him some advice on his sciatica. And that was about that.
As he was leaving he congratulated myself and Barnaby on being so happy and embracing all the possibilities and ideas that home education can bring, and how impressed he was at such a 'wonderfully vibrant and creative environment' Barnaby has to learn in!
Well, that's nice, isn't it?!
I was so pleased I didn't even mind that he didn't even go and appreciate that I had bleached the loo :)
That's that for another year then.