Frequently Asked Questions
Home Education FAQ
Can I telephone you Debbie?
I have found from past experience over the years that each telephone call can take between one and two hours out of my day. I have therefore had to make the decision that I will answer emails and give you lots of written information and advice but I am unable to take phone calls except in an emergency. As a Home Educator you are completely free to make all the decisions about your child’s education and as every families issues are unique it is difficult to advise except in very general terms. I am happy to suggest (by email) useful resources, website, Facebook pages that may help with specific problems.
I know how worrying it is when you start to Home Educate and what a big decision it is. On this page are the most frequently asked questions (FAQ) that you may find useful. I also run a large Facebook group where you are welcome to post about your situation and any questions or concerns you have. You will get lots of responses from fellow home educators who either have experience of or and in the same boat as you. This is the link www.facebook.com/groups/994693681332418 or search for Home Education and Home Schooling HELP and Support UK
If you have any questions about AWE Club specifically you can ask on the AWE Home Education Club Facebook page www.facebook.com/groups/AWEHomeEducation
Is it legal to Home Educate?
Yes! See the Home Education guidelines from the Government on this link:
How do I deregister?
You need to write a letter to the headteacher of your child’s school. Keep a copy and don’t forget to sign it! Templates you can use as a guide are available on this link from the Education Otherwise website:
How do we sit exams?
Home Educated students have to sit exams as private candidates. This can be arranged at a school or at a commercial exam centre and parents must pay for exam entry. There are very strict deadlines for booking exams so don’t leave it until the last minute. Make contact a year in advance so you know which schools or centres will support your child. To start with read the HE Exams WIKI:
Looking for Exam rules and procedures?
This link will help you with all the latest news. It is from the Joint Council for Qualifications which is a membership organisation comprising the eight largest providers of qualifications in the UK:
If you want to skip straight to the Private Candidate section which is what Home Educators need to know, this is the link:
Help! I need legal advice
Legal advice is available from Fiona Nicholson, start here:
Is Home Ed Expensive?
It can be or not! it entirely depends on your choice. There are lots of free resources as well as discount codes and special prices for Home Educators. It is usually advised that you don’t commit too quickly to expensive resources that may turn out to not be appropriate for your child.
Useful links for discount codes are www.awediscounts.com and Home Educators Secret Discount Codes Facebook page. I have spent a great many years building up contacts with suppliers of educational resources in order to obtain special prices to help families.
AWE Club lesson FAQ
Age limits for classes
AWE Home Education Club courses and lessons are taught to the ability level, not the age of the student’s so groups are always mixed ages. For example, if your child is very good at Maths at age 13 but struggles with English you can choose for them to be in a GCSE/IGCSE exam group for Maths but a year 7 class for English. The ages I have put on the course timetables and lesson detail documents are a guide only. Most courses are flexible so do ask me if you are unsure. There are a couple of exceptions for example FILM Studies requires students to be 13 due to the content of the films they will study.
How much do lessons cost?
Fees range from £8 to £12 an hour and are paid half termly in advance. Deadlines for payments will be on the website. There are no sibling discounts as everyone pays the same to share the cost of using professional teachers whom most home educators would find too costly for them as individuals.
Where can I find term dates?
Use this link to find the dates for each school year. AWE lessons align with the Essex school holiday dates:
Which specification do AWE teachers teach for English IGCSE?
AWE teaches Edexcel IGCSE Specification A. There are no coursework requirements so students grades depend on final exams sat in the summer exam series each year. We also run one course where we are able to submit to the exam centre the students coursework which then replaces one of their exams. These courses are not usually available to Home Educated students and are always over subscribed. To reserve a space you will need to contact Debbie and complete a booking for two years before the Summer you want to start the course.
You can read more details about the different options on this link https://he-exams.fandom.com/wiki/English_Language#Options_for_English_Language
My child is very anxious. How can you help?
Anxiety is extremely common in children nowadays and is one of the biggest reasons for children to be deregistered from school. AWE teachers will do whatever they can to support your child. We have many years of experience of supporting teenagers through this stage of their lives whilst also dealing with anxiety. We have seen so many wonderful transformations and success stories unfold before our eyes. It is one of my most satisfying and happy parts of running AWE Club. Of course this greatly affects parents too and I have sat with many a Mum who has arrived in tears from the concern for their child. What wonderful memories we have of seeing the child joining in with the group lessons and having a chat with other students and popping off to get lunch together. Those days make our perseverance so worthwhile.
My personal strategy is to allow the child to be in control. I think that so much of their school life has been about being forced to go to lessons/school against their wishes. They are so exhausted from the anxiety that it gets to a point where it is impossible. If an adult had to deal with the daily fears and worries that children face at school they would leave. Adults have the control and ability as well as life experience to make those decisions and resolve their situation! Most adults would not be able to cope for even a short time let alone many years, often children have been told they have no choice. It’s the law, you must go to school. No control, no choice. When you give them back the control they can recover and make gradual improvements and decisions as to what they can cope with and how to go about it. Often just telling them that it’s not only them but the majority of the children in the class and that those children have had similar experiences and can relate and understand, can be empowering for them.
Initially they may not be able to get out of their parents car or similar so we say, that’s fine. You have taken the first step already. The next step may be to walk to the door. It may take 30 minutes for them to build up the courage or it may take them weeks. However long it takes, it is up to them to progress at a pace they are comfortable at, giving them the control. Telling them it’s okay to go back to the car, they can leave the class at anytime. There is no shouting or telling off. No humiliation, or detention. No bullying. no nastiness. Just kind teachers who understand.
It is great when children do homework and send it to teachers for feedback but please be aware that it is not compulsory! We have found after many years of experience that some children do not respond well to the pressure of homework and deadlines especially if they have anxiety or school based trauma. It is of course different for every child so please do be guided by your child and their personality and goals. We strive to ensure children are self-motivated and happy to complete the homework tasks with the understanding that feedback and practice is useful for them to progress.
Template letter and information and some ‘how to get started’ info is on my blog page www.awediscounts.com/home-education-blog
Discounted Educational Resources www.awediscounts.com
ConquerMaths is relied on by many home educators as it teaches maths at all levels for all exam boards and they can work at their own pace through the recorded lessons. There is a discount for home educators www.awediscounts.com/conquermaths
AWE Home Education Blog
AWE Home Education Club
Group lessons ONLINE and Waltham Abbey www.aweclub.co.uk/online-tutor-groups
AWE Home Education Mailing List
Home Educators Secret Discount Codes
AWE Home Education
Advice and friendship www.facebook.com/groups/AWEHomeEducation
AWE Discounts Facebook Page
For Home Educators www.facebook.com/AWEdiscounts
Help and support Facebook Group
Advice and guidance by Educational Freedom
AWE Home Education
Exams info www.aweclub.co.uk/tutors-and-exams
HE Exams WIKI
For all things exam related the place to start for information is the HE exams wiki he-exams.wikia.org/wiki/Subjects
Home Education UK Exams & Alternatives support and information
STEM Education Toys
Also join Home Education Facebook groups local to you.
Good luck and I hope the information helps.
Happy Home Edding!