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Elective Home Education (EHE)

Educating your child at home

Elective Home Education is where parents choose to exercise their legal right to take responsibility for educating their children at home or at home and in some other way which they choose, instead of sending them to school full time. This is different to education which may be provide ‘otherwise than at school’ for example tuition for children who are too ill to attend. It is parents who are responsible for ensuring that their children receive a suitable education. While most parents aim to do this by sending their children to school, some parents choose to educate their children at home.

Educating a child full-time at home can be a rewarding but challenging task. Parents may choose to engage private tutors to assist in providing a suitable education, but there is no requirement to do so. The local authority recognises that there are a range of styles that a parent may choose, to educate their child at home, including but not exclusively, school at home, autonomous learning, child centered approaches and experiential learning.

The decision to Electively Home Educate should be taken solely by parents and schools should not seek to influence or pressure parents to opt to educate their children at home.

The documents below reflect Suffolk County Council’s current strategy, policy and procedures relating to Elective Home Education based on the government’s guidance to local authorities 2016.

Considering Elective Home Education?

If you are considering Elective Home education and would like some further information, we have tried to provide answers to frequently asked questions below as a starting point. If your child is currently in school,  we would urge you to contact the school and arrange to meet and discuss this with the school and we welcome calls to the EHE advisor team if your feel that you need further information of advice before making the decision.

Guide for parents

EHE Drop sessions

Drop in sessions are held throughout the year for parents that are currently home educating.

At the drop-in session you will have an opportunity to meet the EHE Consultant to find out about local educational resources for EHE children, Suffolk’s approach to EHE or to simply discuss and ask any questions you may have. Your children are welcome to attend with you.

Upcoming dates will be added to this page once they have been arranged.

NSFT First response

The Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust launched their First Response helpline. The helpline is staffed by trained mental health professionals who will be able to listen to concerns and help people get the support they need. Call 24/7 on 0808 196 3494. For more information visit: https://www.nsft.nhs.uk/Find-help/Pages/Helpline.aspx

There are a number of organisations providing mental health support listed here

Education Otherwise - KIT Award

The Elective Home Education Team has been awarded with the KIT Award for Excellence. In recognition of the passion and commitment to excellence in support of home education. 

The EHE team would like to share with you all, Education Otherwise’s ‘Kit’ awards to Local Authority Officers and Departments for excellence, when working with and supporting families who have elected to home educate.

Please click on the link below to complete the short survey provided by Education Otherwise and make your nomination for members of the EHE team, that have tried their best to help you and your family regarding the home education of your child/children, for this year’s ‘Kit’ awards.

The awards directly reflect the collective experiences of home educating families.



Frequently asked questions

1.  What is Elective Home Education (EHE)?

Parents are responsible for ensuring that their children receive a suitable education.  While most parents aim to do this by sending their children to school, some parents choose to educate their children at home.

Elective Home Education is the term used by the Department for Education (DfE) to describe parents ‘decisions to provide education for their children other than by sending them to school. This is different from home tuition provided by a local authority, and different from education provided by a local authority other than at a school.

In Suffolk we respect this right of parents. Our aim is to work constructively with parents to help them promote their children’s learning and development. We seek to establish relationships with parents that are based on mutual understanding and respect.

2.  What is the law relating to Elective Home Education?

There are many laws that link and contribute in some way to Elective Home Education law. The main act being the Education Act of 1996.

Section 7 of the Education Act 1996  states that all parents have an equal duty to ensure their child has an appropriate full-time education that is suitable for their child’s age, ability, and aptitude, and to any special educational needs they may have. Parents can do this either by their child’s regular attendance at school or ‘otherwise.’

Elective Home Education is the ‘otherwise’ part.

3.  What are parents’ rights and responsibilities?

Parents must ensure that their children receive suitable full-time education for as long as they are being educated at home.

Parents may choose to home educate their child from a very early age and so the child may not have been previously enrolled at school. They may also elect to home educate at any other stage up to the end of compulsory school age.( see Q 18)

Parents do not need to seek the permission of the local authority to educate their children at home (unless their child is registered at a school as a result of a school attendance order). If a child attends a special school, the school cannot remove the child’s name from the register without the permission of the local authority.  The local authority will only be able to give that permission when they are aware that the child or young person will have access to the provision that is laid out in their Education, Health and Care plan. It is the parents responsibility to ensure their child has this access.

 Where parents are funding a place for their child at an independent special school, they do not require permission from the local authority to de-register.

Schools must not seek to persuade parents to educate their children at home as a way of avoiding an exclusion or because the child has a poor attendance record.

Parents who choose to educate their children at home assume full financial responsibility for the educational costs, including the cost of any educational resources, sporting activities or part-time alternative provision and including the cost of arranging examinations and paying the examination fees. 

In the case of children with an Education, Health & Care plan, please refer to the section below on SEND.

The type of educational activity can be varied and flexible. Home-educating parents are not required to:

  • teach the National Curriculum
  • have a timetable
  • have premises equipped to any particular standard
  • set hours during which education will take place
  • have any specific qualifications
  • make detailed plans in advance
  • observe school hours, days or terms
  • mark work done by their child
  • match school-based, age-specific standards.

A parent does not have to provide a ‘broad and balanced’ curriculum or give formal lessons. They do not have to mark work done by the child, formally assess progress, or set development objectives. They do not have to match school-based, age-specific standards or reproduce school like socialisation or learning opportunities.  However, many home-educating families do some of these. Furthermore, it is likely to be much easier to show that the education provided is suitable if there is breadth of learning and content and the concepts of progression and assessment are incorporated into the child’s learning.

4.  What is ‘suitable’ education?

Efficient and suitable education are not defined in the Education Act 1996 but efficient has been described in case law as an education that “achieves that which it sets out to achieve”, and a suitable education is one that “primarily equips a child for life within the community of which he/she is a member. A suitable education must also enable a child to participate fully in life in the UK by including sufficient secular education.

A suitable education should be age-appropriate, enable the child to make progress according to his or her particular level of ability, and should take account of any specific strengths the child may have. Literacy and numeracy are an essential part of suitable education.

More generally the education should allow the child to grow-up to be an independent person, live beyond the community in which they are brought up, if that is the choice made in later life by the child.  Education at home should not directly conflict with the fundamental British values.

Education may not be ‘suitable’ if it is delivered in circumstances which make it very difficult to work, or if it leads to excessive isolation from the child’s peers, and might impede social development.

Consequently, there are going to be a range of approaches that are possible and what is efficient and suitable for one child is not necessarily going to be the same for a different child.

‘Full-time’ education does not mean keeping to the same hours that a child would have in school.  In home education there is often almost continuous one-to-one contact and education may take place outside normal school hours.  There is currently no legal definition of ‘full-time’, however, it would be considered as an education that takes up much of the child’s day over a similar number of weeks to the time that schools are open or equivalent. That may be less hours each day but over more weeks of the year.

As previously mentioned, home educating parents do not have to teach the National Curriculum but familiarity with it is likely to be an advantage should your child return to school and if it is your intention for your child to access formal qualifications.

5.  I have decided to home educate – what should I do?

Firstly, we would strongly urge you to speak to school and ensure that you have all the information you need before informing the school in writing of your intention to take responsibility for your child’s education and Electively Home Educate. This will then require the school to remove your child’s name from the register (a sample deregistration letter can be found on the Education Otherwise website). The school then informs the local authority of your child’s removal from the school roll. 

The Elective Home Education team will then contact you and ask for some basic information and make a request to complete the Parental Confirmation of Elective Home Education form. This form is not compulsory, rather one option for sharing the provision that a parent has put in place. Equally, some parents choose to provide a detailed report of the provision, others prefer to meet and share the information, either in person or virtually and some choose to email pictures and photographs of their children’s work alongside one of these options.

Parents may choose to employ other people to educate their child, but parents will continue to be responsible for the education provided.  They will also be responsible for ensuring that those people they choose to work with their child, are suitable to have access to children.  Parents are advised to satisfy themselves by taking up appropriate references and Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks, which the people employed should be able to produce. There is a guide available from the team to help with this.

If your child is not yet of statutory school age and you intend to educate him or her at home, it would be very helpful if you inform the Elective Home Education Team by email at EHE@suffolk.gov.uk

6.  Do I have to be a qualified teacher?

You don’t have to be a qualified teacher; many home educators have no teaching qualifications.




7.  Do I have to tell the local authority that I am home educating?

The simple answer is no, but you are advised that it is wise to do so. If your child has never been to school or you are new to the area you do not have to inform the local authority. However, it would be helpful for us for you to do so by emailing EHE@suffolk.gov.uk

If a child is on the roll of a Suffolk school the school should not delete the child's name from their admissions register until they have received written notification from the parents that the pupil is receiving education otherwise than at school. The school will then inform the local authority of your child’s removal from the school roll.  The Elective Home Education team will then contact you and ask for some basic information and make a request to complete the Parental Confirmation of Elective Home Education form.

8.  Does the local authority provide any funding?

The simple answer to this question is ‘No’. Please remember that local authorities have no legal responsibility or obligation to fund parents or carers who choose to home educate. You will need to look at the costs that may be involved (equipment, visits, books, tutors etc.) and plan what you intend to do before home educating. In common with many local authorities, Suffolk does not provide direct funding or resources (e.g., exercise or textbooks, pens, pencils or paper, home computers etc.).

Parents who choose to educate their children at home must be prepared to assume full financial responsibility, including bearing the cost of any public examinations.

9.  What about children with Special Educational Needs or Disabilities (SEND)?

The right of parents to educate their child at home applies equally when a child has Special Educational Needs (SEN). Where a child has an Education, Health & Care (EHC) plan and is Electively Home Educated, it remains the local authority’s duty to ensure that the child’s needs are met and therefore, the EHC plan will continue to be reviewed annually via the statutory Annual Review process. The only difference being that the review will be undertaken with the Family Services Team Coordinator.

If a child has a special school named in the EHC plan, the local authority will need to give its ‘consent’ to the school to be able to remove the child from its roll. This can only happen when they have information about how the child will be accessing the provision that is laid out in their EHC plan. To do this they will make contact with the parent and ask them to provide this information. The pupil will remain on the roll of the special school until such time as consent is given for the child’s name to be removed from the roll. Should consent not be given, then the local authority will expect the pupil to attend the special school named in EHC plan.

A parent who is Electively Home Educating their child may ask the local authority to carry out a Statutory Assessment or reassessment of their child’s SEND by contacting the Family Services Team and making that request. The Elective Home Education team can help and advise with this process and there is an information sheet available from the team to help parents with this.

10.  Can my child attend school part-time?

Part time attendance is an arrangement (between the parent and the school) by which the child is registered at school but attends part time; the rest of the time the child is Electively Home Educated.  Part time attendance is a legal option, but it requires the agreement of the head teacher of the school.  The child will be required to follow the National Curriculum whilst at school but not whilst he or she is being Electively Home Educated. There would be an expectation that information is shared around the provision being made for your child on the days they do not attend school. This is not the same as when a school and parent agree a temporary part time timetable in order to support a young person who is experiencing difficulties in school for whatever reason.

The GOV.UK home education web page also says "Write to the headteacher if you plan to take your child out of school. They must accept if you're taking your child out completely. They can refuse if you want to send your child to school some of the time."

11.  Do I have to be inspected or monitored?

Local authorities have a duty to make arrangements to establish as far as possible the identities of children in its area who are not receiving a suitable education.

When we become aware that you are home educating your child, we will contact you to ask for some basic information such as child's name and date of birth as well as preferred contact details.  We will also ask how you wish to provide the local authority with information about your home education.  Providing we have the assurance that a suitable education is being provided we will normally be in touch once a year to confirm that you are still Electively Home Educating and that the provision being made remains suitable. This annual contact and assurance are a duty of the local authority.  If you move house or your child starts school, we would be grateful if you could let us know as we would not automatically be made aware by the school.

12.  What should my child learn?

We fully acknowledge that parents have considerable choice over the shape and delivery of their provision. It must however reflect their children’s age, ability and any special needs they may have and include development of their literacy and numeracy.

13.  Do you have information about examinations?

Parents who choose to educate their children at home assume full financial responsibility for the educational costs, including the cost of arranging examinations and paying the examination fees. Children may have to go to an examination centre to sit papers and parents will have to pay the costs involved but parents do have the advantage of selecting the board whose external syllabus most suits their child.

Useful introductory information on exams can also be found at the home educator Ed Yourself. Other information is available from organisations such as Education Otherwise.

Some Suffolk schools and academies may be willing to allow external candidates to access courses and sit examinations. The team have an information sheet available to help you with this and are happy to advise further.  

14.  Where can I get help and support?

1. Suffolk's Elective Home Education Consultants will be able to give you information about resources, examinations and SEND needs and services   Also, a useful resource list can be found by using the following links: Primary age resources list and Secondary age resource list

2. National organisations that support home-educators include:

  • Education Otherwise (www.educationotherwise.org), 61 Bridge Street, Kington, HR5 3DJ, Telephone: 0300 1245690 Email: enquiries@educationotherwise.org 

3. Department for Education information:

4. National Curriculum:

15.  Can I arrange work experience?

Electively Home Educated children may take part in work experience that is arranged by their parents. Parents should consider the extent to which their children are covered by the health and safety, child protection and insurance provisions of the workplace. An information sheet is available on how to undertake these checks from the EHE team.

16.  Further Education/Careers Information for Young People

National Careers Service (https://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk/Pages/Home.aspx) National careers information and advice helpline: 0800 100 900 (open every day 8am – 10pm).

The Source (Suffolk) 0800 085 4448 (http://www.thesource.me.uk/) The Source website provides access to information and advice on courses, jobs, apprenticeships, careers, money, housing and health for young people.

Contact information for Suffolk Youth Support Workers and Drop-In Centres are available on the ‘The Source’ website.

17.  What do I do if I want to return my child to school?

For various reasons you may decide that your child should return to school and we will always be willing to offer a place for your child at a Suffolk school. If you decide to return your child to school you will need to apply for a place at your preferred school provision. 

Suffolk County Council Admissions Team will provide you with detailed information, advice and guidance on applying for a place, and on the appeals process should admission be refused to a particular school.

Should you have concerns about returning your child to school you may wish to contact the SENDIASS service (01473 265210) during Monday to Friday office hours or email sendiass@suffolk.gov.uk).

Alternatively, you may wish to write to the Elective Home Education department explaining that you have been home educating your child but no longer wish to do so and seek information and advice on returning you child to school.

Elective Home Education
Children and Young People Services
Suffolk County Council
Endeavour House
8 Russell Road

Email: EHE@suffolk.gov.uk

18.  What is ‘Raising the Participation Age (RPA)’?

Parents can Electively Home Educate and provide a suitable education for as long as their child is of compulsory school age.

Some parents do home educate their children beyond the age of 16 in order to comply with the duty of young people (aged 16 and 17) participating in education or employment with training until their 18th birthday.

This duty of participating in education or employment with training (until their child’s 18th birthday) relates to the government initiative known as ‘Raising the Participation Age (RPA)’.

Most children will continue (until their 18th birthday) in education or employment with training through the following programmes of learning:

  1. full-time study in a school, college or with a training provider (at least 540 Guided Learning Hours per year - i.e. 15hrs per week over 36 weeks of an academic year).
  2. full-time work or volunteering (20 hours or more per week for 8 or more consecutive weeks) combined with part-time education or training (at least 280 Guided Learning Hours per year).
  3. an apprenticeship or traineeship.
  4. an engagement programme designed to move the young person into one of the above.

If a 16- or 17-year-old is home educated until their 18th birthday, no hourly requirement of education applies. The amount and content of home education is at the discretion of the home educator. However, at this age we would strongly advise the young person seeks advice and guidance that will encourage, enable and assist them to participate in education or employment with training. This support can be sought from our Early Help Specialist Youth Support Service by going to www.thesource.me.uk

We also recommend the following website: www.ICANBEA.org.uk

The national apprenticeship website is also a very useful resource: https://nationalcareers.service.gov.uk/explore-your-education-and-training-choices/apprenticeship

Below are some links that may assist in discovering further information regarding ‘Raising the Participation Age (RPA)’.



19.  What are the local authority’s procedures?

Suffolk recognises that there are many, equally valid, approaches to educational provision. What is suitable for one child may not be for another, but all children should be involved in a learning process. Suffolk seeks to provide parents who home educate with information and advice through the work of its Home Education Consultants and Advisors. Contact details are available below.
As well as providing information and advice, the Elective Home Education Team help the local authority discharge its statutory duties.

5.1 The duty under s.436A means that local authorities must make arrangements to find out so far as possible whether home educated children are receiving suitable full-time education. DfE Elective Home Education Guidance for Local Authorities 2019

Our procedures and approach are outlined in the PDF document Suffolk Elective Home Education Procedures.


20. How and where can I find information about how to get started with Home educating my child?

There is a wealth of information online about different approaches to home education.

SCC would always encourage parents to research thoroughly before making the decision to home educate. The best sources of information are local and national elective home education groups and forums. Contact details for these can be found

Ed Yourself: The Home Education Consultancy

http://edyourself.org/ Education Otherwise https://www.educationotherwise.org/

Education Otherwise Association, 61 Bridge Street, Kington, HR5 3DJ. Telephone: 0300 1245690. enquiries@educationotherwise.org

Home Education Advisory Service (HEAS)

http://www.heas.org.uk/ 01707 371854, enquiries@heas.org.uk

Home Education UK http://www.home-education.org.uk/

West Suffolk Home Education Hub https://www.westsuffolkhomeed.org.uk/ Includes details of Suffolk home education groups, events, resources and there is a magazine.

SCC has also prepared an information sheet which can be found at XXXXX

Parents do on occasions talk about ‘ Deschooling’ the word is mainly used to refer to a transition process that children and parents go through when they leave the school system in order to start home-schooling. Whilst it is clear that there will undoubtedly be a period of time when as a parent you are finding out what works best for your child in terms of home school, it is not lawful for there to be extended periods where no home education provision is being made.

The Departmental guidance states clearly that there is no legal basis for ‘deschooling’.  Any statement along these lines could be an indication that the education is not properly being provided. These kinds of statements could indicate that education is not at that time, suitable and meeting a child’s needs.  

It is not unreasonable that good home education develops with experience as a child becomes used to being in a different learning environment and parents ‘find their feet’. However, families should be aiming to have a satisfactory offer available to their child from the outset, which will adapt and evolve as the child becomes used to a new way of learning and working, perhaps having a greater involvement in what, how and when they learn.

Deschooling is often used interchangeably with the term unschooling.  They are not the same thing. Unschooling is about working in a way that is different from most school settings. It involves teaching children based on their interests rather than a prescribed curriculum. The child’s learning is not directed by a ‘teacher’ or adult, rather facilitated by an adult providing guidance and resources to help a child access and make sense of the world, develop their questions, identify those things they are interested in and to help a child develop curiosity and the skills to find out what they would like to know and how this will lead to what they would like to do in the future

Contact us

Suffolk seeks to provide parents considering home education with information and advice through the work of its Home Education Consultants. 

For enquiries, or to make contact with the Home Education Consultant for your area, please contact:

Elective Home Education
Children and Young People's Services
Suffolk County Council
Endeavour House
8 Russell Road

Telephone: 01473 265139
Email: EHE@suffolk.gov.uk

View the Elective Home Education Team leaflet

Information for schools

The law in England allows parents to educate their children at home instead of sending them to school. It is the parents’ responsibility to ensure that their child receives an efficient full time education, suitable to age, ability, and aptitude, and any special needs s/he may have. Parents of a child registered at a maintained or an independent school, must inform the school formally in writing of their intention to de-register (a sample deregistration letter can be found on the Education Otherwise website). This communication, be it letter, or email must indicate clearly that the parents intend to take responsibility for their child’s education and cannot simply be a request to remove from the roll. The communicated must be written by the parent themselves and in those cases where English is not the parents first language, a parent can provide this in their first language. It should then be translated to ensure the parent has clearly indicated a wish to educate electively home. 

Parents do not have to ask for permission or seek approval to home educate. It does not make a difference if the child has an Education Health and Care Plan unless the child is a registered pupil at a specialist placement, in which case the parent must request the consent of the local authority before the child's name can be deleted from the school roll. Please contact the EHE team directly for support with specialist placement, consent for  removal from roll.

Schools must not seek to persuade parents to educate their children at home as a way of avoiding an exclusion or because the child has a poor attendance record. In the case of exclusion, they must follow the statutory guidance. If the pupil has a poor attendance record, the school and local authority must address the issues behind the absenteeism and use the other remedies available to them.

Withdrawal from school to electively home educate

When a school receives written notification from a parent of their intention to home educate their child, it is the responsibility of the school to:

  • acknowledge the parents’ letter in writing and to delete the child’s name from the school register. The local authority (LA) requires the school to do this within 3 working days of receiving the parents’ letter.
  • inform the LA immediately of the removal of the child’s name from the register (Section 12 (3) of 'The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006'). Schools should inform the LA of the removal of a child’s name from the register via the CME schools portal
  • Complete and send to the EHE team an EHE form 1

Where a parent does inform a school, they are considering EHE then SCC strongly recommends:

  • schools convene a meeting to talk through parents’ reasons to home educate their child/children and resolve any issues about school and the child's needs that might influence the parents’ decision to continue with their attendance at the school. As a result, parents will be fully aware of their responsibilities and if there are any concerns that the school may have regarding their decision to home educate. The meeting could be attended by an EHE officer if this would be supportive to the parent.
  • that parents are given contact details and advised to seek advice from SCC’s EHE team before formally asking the school to remove the child from the school roll
  • where appropriate both the school and parents should consider support offered through the SCC’s Early Help Team (EHT), where families are considering home education as means of addressing wider unmet needs or unresolved issues.
  • If the child/young person is subject to an EHC plan or has additional needs that have previously been supported in school, the school could arrange an early annual review / review of needs and record this request along with any new information in the review. This would be an opportunity to update any unmet needs and consider how provision within school could be adjusted or if further referrals to other services, which would not be available to the child once home educated, could be made to support the child, and perhaps ease any concerns from the parent

Withdrawal from a special school to electively home educate

Local authorities may encourage parents to inform them directly of the withdrawal of a child from school, but have no legal right to insist that parents do so. The only exception to this is where the child is attending a special school under arrangements made by the local authority, in which case additional permission is required from the authority before the child's name can be removed from the register.  When a special school receives written notification from a parent of their intention to home educate their child, it is the responsibility of the school to inform the Elective Home Education department and the Family Services coordinator. The Local Authority will then speak to the parent to make arrangements for them to share information. It is the expectation that this will not be a lengthy process and that the child will continue to attend the school until consent to remove from roll is given.

School Attendance Orders

If a child is registered at a school as a result of a school attendance order the parents must have the order revoked by the local authority on the ground that arrangements have been made for the child to receive suitable education otherwise than at school, before the child can be deleted from the school's register and educated at home.


Part time attendance is an arrangement (between the parent and the school) by which the child is registered at school but attends part time; the rest of the time the child is electively home educated. Part time attendance is a legal option, but it depends on the agreement of the head teacher and governing body. The child will be required to follow the National Curriculum whilst at school but not whilst he or she is being electively home educated.

Schools may enter into flexi-schooling arrangements provided they correctly mark children as absent in attendance registers when they are being educated at home.

The GOV.UK web page containing the Home Education Guidelines says "Pupils who are being flexi-schooled should be marked as absent from school during the periods when they are receiving home education."

The GOV.UK home education web page also says "Write to the headteacher if you plan to take your child out of school. They must accept if you’re taking your child out completely. They can refuse if you want to send your child to school some of the time.” 

Elective Home Education

Elective Home Education
Children and Young People's Services
Suffolk County Council
Endeavour House
8 Russell Road

Telephone: 01473 265139
Email: EHE@suffolk.gov.uk

College links

Suffolk New College 14-16 offer Update

Suffolk New College have been in touch with the Elective Home education team and shared the following information. We are aware that this decision may have an impact on the future plans of many Elective Home Educated families. If you would like to discuss this with the Elective Home Education consultants or advisors, please email EHE@suffolk.gov.uk or call business support on 01473 265139 who will be happy to pass on your details to your local consultant.

‘Suffolk New College have in the past chosen to offer a small Number of Electively Home educated students access to a range of courses. However, in recent months, Ofsted rules around Direct Entry of 14-16’s in college have changed. Suffolk New College is not a direct entry College and as such cannot respond to the larger numbers of applications now being received from Electively Home Educated students.

As a result of this change, we have reached the decision that we will not accept applications from any new 14-16 home educated students from September 2020. A few 14-16 students already enrolled at the college for the 19/20 academic year will be able to remain with us in 20/21 to complete their studies. We are meeting this commitment to allow them to complete their studies without moving settings.’

Below is a list of colleges and contact details;

West Suffolk College (http://www.westsuffolkcollege.ac.uk/)

Out Risbygate
Bury St Edmunds
IP33 3RL

Telephone: 01284 716333
Email: info@wsc.ac.uk

Suffolk One (http://www.suffolkone.ac.uk/)

Scrivener Drive

Main Switchboard: 01473 556600
Email: admin@suffolkone.ac.uk

Easton & Otley College (https://www.eastonotley.ac.uk/)

Easton Campus


Course enquiries and applications 08000 224556

College of West Anglia (http://www.cwa.ac.uk/)

The College of West Anglia King's Lynn Campus
Tennyson Avenue
King's Lynn 
PE30 2QW

Telephone: 01553 761144
Email: enquiries@col-westanglia.ac.uk

The College of West Anglia Cambridge Campus
Landbeach Road
CB24 6DB

Telephone: 01223 860701
Email: enquiries@col-westanglia.ac.uk

East Coast College - (Great Yarmouth Campus) (https://www.eastcoast.ac.uk/)

East Coast College
Suffolk Road
Great Yarmouth
NR31 0ED

Telephone: 0800 854695

Norwich City College (http://www.ccn.ac.uk/)

City College Norwich
Ipswich Road

Email: information@ccn.ac.uk
Telephone: 01603 773311

East Coast College - (Lowestoft Campus) (https://www.eastcoast.ac.uk/)

East Coast College
St. Peter's Street
NR32 2NB

General Enquiries: 01502 583521
Course Enquiries: 0800 854695

Useful downloads

Below is a list of useful documents;

Latest news and events


New EHC needs assessment FAQ – around seeking specialist advice

Following requests, we published an additional FAQ with our advice for parents about asking for particular advice for an EHC needs assessment: EHCNA and plans FAQ’s (no. 16) and on our Assessments page.

Website and resources

Please continue to guide families to use our website which is packed pull of impartial information and advice, and includes FAQ’s across topics (SEN Support, Choosing a School, EHC needs assessments and plans) and includes information about the options for raising concerns with settings or services. The information and advice we provide whether online or in our leaflets, through our information sessions or directly by email or phone, is based firmly in the law. SENDIASS staff receive accredited legal training and follow a set of national Minimum Standards. Families can be confident they will receive accurate, impartial information and advice from our service which helps them have the confidence to work as equal partners in discussions.

SENDIASS website

Our website is a well-used resource, packed with information and advice for families. In August we moved our website to a new platform. Feedback from our survey and sessions with groups of young people input to the design and navigation features.  We strive for continuous improvement, and we want to continue to gather feedback – please take a look at our website and give feedback by completing our survey. Alternatively, you can email us at enquiries@suffolksendiass.co.uk

Myth-busting about the need for a diagnosis

We were recently alerted by health colleagues to general misconceptions about the need for a diagnosis in terms of ‘SEN support’ and securing an ‘EHC plan’. We have two FAQ’s on our website which cover these issues specifically, and we have published the first of two posts on social media which link to this information. Please get in touch if you have ideas for other myths we can help dispel.


Frequently asked questions about SENDIASS – helps to explain our arms-length position and the way we work (suggested by and coproduced with SPCF, with thanks).

Easy-Read publicity

An Easy Read version of our young person service leaflet and poster (helpful for settings and providers to display):


Child and young person leaflet (Easy-Read)

Child and young person poster (Easy-Read)

Poster image file (JPEG)

Our news and upcoming events can be found here: https://suffolksendiass.co.uk/news-events/ and you can read our About us’ page to find out more about the way we work.


Our autumn term training plan is available, helpful to see what we have coming up: View SENDIASS Information Sessions for Families Autumn 23

Working with Schools

Booking is open for a rescheduled online session exploring practical tips and solution focussed approaches for working with schools around your child’s SEND. This is a longer session at the request of parents to allow time for more discussion.

27 November 2023, 10am – 12 noon

Click here to register

Personalised Stories 

Booking is open for an online session for families, hosted by SENDIASS, where specialist teachers from the Communication and Interaction service will explore how personalised stories can help children with understanding social norms and expectations.

Online session

05 December 2023, 10am – 11am

Click here to register

Supporting children and young people to manage their emotions  

Booking is open for a repeat online session for parents/carers hosted by SENDIASS and delivered by specialist teachers from the Social, Emotional and Mental Health Service. This will explore ways to help children and young people to understand and manage their feelings. Also strategies that schools may use and how they can access advice to enable them to support your child.

 14 December 2023, 10am – 11:30am

Click here to register

Drop-in events

Suffolk Family Hub SEND Advice drop-in - Stowmarket

SENDIASS will be just one of the services available at the Hillside Community Centre. 

24 November, 10am to 12pm

Facebook links, to help with promotion of our events:

Transition to secondary

Annual Reviews of EHC plans

Sensory processing in the early years

Behaviour – communication need


Just launched by Abbeycroft Leisure - Home Education Forest School sessions in Bury St Edmunds.

These are every Wednesday from 01 November - 06 December 2023, 10am-1pm

For young people aged 8-15 years.

Please see attached flyer and guidance

Booking link: https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/abbeycroft/t-noyvajp

Mid Suffolk Council, along with Activities Unlimited and Everyone Active have joined together to provide climbing wall sessions at Everyone Active in Stowmarket.

The sessions start on the 25th April and are specifically for children and young people with SEND. Booking is advisable due to number restrictions.

The sessions are subsidised by the council to support children and young people with SEND to try something new in a safe and friendly environment. 

 Suffolk Academy of Dance and Performing Arts

Forest Schools and Rural Studies 

Forest School activities with food production, traditional agriculture and food preparation

Mondays 10am-1pm term time

Please see poster for more information

Other important information

School Nursing

Electively home educated children and their parents can contact the service via Chat Health.  ChatHealth service video

Chat Health is open 09:00-16:30 Monday to Friday (except bank holidays). Children aged 11-19, or parents can text for advice. The service provides a range of support which includes advice and guidance for emotional and physical problems, either via a text, or signposting to other organisations or internet sites.   

The webpage School nursing | Suffolk County Council also has a referral form, so parents can refer directly to them via that route, or phone the hub for advice. The nurses do offer when needed to see children in health centres, council buildings, children’s centre and occasionally will do home visits. 

The Foundation Programme at West Suffolk College

Laying Foundations for Career Success.

A new programme that sets out a bridge for progression.

This is a pioneering new programme to support students to fall in love with learning again.

The Foundation Programme flyer

FREE Online resources and activities to support Home Schooling

Please see below link to a list of free online resources to help you with home schooling. 

Free online resources and activities

Coronavirus (COVID 19): online education resources from GOV.UK

Online educational resources for schools and parents to help children to learn at home. 

Coronavirus (COVID 19): online education resources

New resources

EHE families, we will be adding new sites to our resources as we get information about them. Some providers have added additional materials, so keep watching our site for up to date resources.

  1. The National Literacy Library has launched an online zone which includes reading and writing activities, book lists, videos, competitions and reading challenges.
  2. The BBC has ramped up its education programmes by launching a whole new iplayer experience for children and it has added more resources to its Bitesize area.
  3. Youth music development charity NYMAZ  has put together a package of online music lessons and events.
  4. Purple Mash by 2Simple is a website designed for children aged 3-11. It contains many creative tools i.e: coding, animation, publishing, art and also applications for maths, spelling and grammar.
  5. Thousands of colouring pages, crafts, puzzles, worksheets for children of all ages have been put online by Activity Village

Children's guides to Coronavirus

Please see below two children's guides to Coronavirus:

Minister Ford's open letter to the SEND sector

Please see below letter to all children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), their parents/carers and families, and all others who support them.

Minister Ford's open letter to the SEND sector

Allsorts Support Services events

Please see below information about afterschool clubs and EHE session from Allsorts Support Services.

Clip 'n Climb discount code 

Click here to view more information

Young people in Suffolk can now access free online counselling 

A new online counselling and emotional wellbeing support service for young people aged 11 – 18 years (up to 19th birthday) is being launched on World Mental Health Day. Called ‘Kooth’, it offers young people in Suffolk, free, safe and anonymous online counselling, 365 days a year, from 12 noon until 10 pm weekdays and from 6pm until 10pm weekends.

The service has been commissioned by NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk and NHS West Suffolk clinical commissioning groups, and has been implemented as part of Suffolk's Children & Young People's Emotional Wellbeing Plan 2020 to improve local mental health services.

A new Kooth Integration and Participation Worker will be available to deliver free presentations on Kooth to young people and professionals across Suffolk. Contact sclark@xenzone.com

To find out more about Kooth, go to www.kooth.com

Home Education Youth Allotment Sessions

Free weekly youth allotment activities with the YMCA Shine Project.

You can experience new things, gain confidence, learn new skills, speak out about yourself and stand up for young people.

View the poster

Friends of S.E.N.D. - Lowestoft Library

A closed session for children of any age with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities and their Parents and Carers.

Fortnightly Saturdays (next session 13 July 2019)


Children's Library, Lowestoft Library

New SEND Support & ASD factsheets on the Suffolk Local Offer website

To help children, young people and their families source support for their needs, two new factsheets are now available on the landing page for Education of the Suffolk Local Offer website. The factsheets have been co-produced by Suffolk Parent Carer Network (SPCN), the County Inclusion Support Service (CISS) and East Coast Community Healthcare to provide information that can be downloaded and printed out.

The ASD Factsheet is a simple two-sided guide covering what ASD can look like, what to do if you think your child needs to be assessed, strategies schools can use to support children with ASD and strategies that might be useful in the home. It will also guide you to Suffolk-specific information and services.
The SEND Support Factsheet clarifies some of the information in the SEND Code of Practice on what support can be expected from a child’s school, and what to do when they can’t meet needs.
If you have any queries, please email localoffer@suffolk.gov.uk

The Source website has been re-launched


The Source website is a useful wellbeing resource which provides information, advice and sources of support to young people in Suffolk between 11-18 and up to 25 years of age for young people with additional needs.

The website has been re-vamped and re-designed and provides an engaging one-stop-shop for information on everyday issues including health, emotional wellbeing, careers and relationships. Find out about the site’s main features and benefits (including walkthrough video) www.thesource.me.uk/launch 

New Promotional Materials

New promotional materials have been created. Please refer to our resource list (below) which provides an overview of all the free leaflets and posters that we have available to order on request.

The Source website resources:

Resource name


4x The Source poster

Promoting The Source website

1) General poster promoting The Source

2) General Group poster promoting The Source

3) Careers Advice poster

4) Choosing options in yr 9 poster


Safe & Supported poster (SEND)

Promoting Welcoming Places project and information for young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) on The Source www.thesource.me.uk/extra


‘Where can I find out about’ factsheet

A general signposting factsheet providing a list of key links to useful websites on a range of issues.


‘What financial support is there?’ factsheet

Factsheet providing financial support information - useful on results day.

The Source postcard

Promoting the Source website and the CV Builder.


The Source pledge postcard

Postcard for organisations to make a pledge to promote use of the website. Find out more www.thesource.me.uk/update


The Source business card

Small cards to slip into your wallet with the website details on.


Yojo poster

Promoting the yojo careers and apprenticeship app – search, prepare and apply. Find out more www.thesource.me.uk/yojo


Emotional Health and Wellbeing (EHW) resources:

Toilet door poster North

Promoting key EHW services in the Lowestoft and Waveney area, for the back of toilet doors (www.thesource.me.uk/toiletdoor).

Toilet door poster East and West

Promoting key EHW services in Suffolk (excluding Lowestoft and Waveney), for the back of toilet doors (www.thesource.me.uk/toiletdoor)


How are you feeling poster

Emoji poster promoting www.thesource.me.uk/wellbeing on The Source.


How are you feeling today postcard

Promoting helplines, text and online wellbeing support and tips to look after your wellbeing -Signposting to www.thesource.me.uk/wellbeing.


Barnado’s phoneline service (excluding Waveney and Lowestoft) poster

Promoting Barnado’s phoneline service which provides EHW information, advice, resources and support for parents, carers and young people (www.thesource.me.uk/barnardos)


Emotional Wellbeing Hub (excluding Waveney and Lowestoft) poster

Promoting the Emotional Wellbeing Hub service (excluding Waveney and Lowestoft) to make a referral to CHAMS (www.thesource.me.uk/hub)


Kooth poster

Promoting the Kooth service – Kooth provides free, safe and anonymous EHW support to young people (www.thesource.me.uk/kooth).   


How are you feeling (EHW) bookmark

Bookmark promoting EHW information and key services.


How are you feeling z-card

Z-card providing key EHW information and services.


Movement and Mind z-card

Z-card providing information and advice on using movement to improve your mood (currently only available digitally).


Self Harm z-card

Z-card providing information, advice and sources of support around self-harm.


Suicide Prevention z-card

Z-card providing information, advice and sources of support around suicide prevention and feeling overwhelmed.


What’s Up challenge booklet

Accompanying information to the 30 day What’s Up challenge – 30 challenges to help you feel good. (www.thesource.me.uk/whatsup)


What’s Up challenge tiles posters

All the What’s Up wellbeing challenges in handy tile format.

You can download digital versions of the resources or request printed resources from:

Download and print resource: www.thesource.me.uk/resources
Request printed resources, email us: thesource@suffolk.gov.uk

Signposting to The Source

Please use the following links to signpost young people, parents/carers and professionals to the site:

Further information for organisations is available at www.thesource.me.uk/update  

Follow us on social media:  Facebook: /thesourcewebsite                     Twitter: SourceSuffolk                            Instagram: Ehub_

If you have any queries, please contact thesource@suffolk.gov.uk

Work Experience Opportunity - Ipswich and Colchester Museums Service Work Experience for Years 10-12:

Placements are open to any young person between years 10-12, including home educated, and further details can be found on the website:


Follow @ColMuseums/ @IpswichMuseums on Twitter or Colchester Museums/ Ipswich Borough Council on facebook for updates on our forthcoming work experience opportunities.

In the meantime, there is a page on the website dedicated to museum roles, which home educating parents might find helpful:


New Emotional Wellbeing Gateway for parents, carers, and professionals:

Families and professionals looking for emotional wellbeing and mental health support for children and young people, can find practical advice and local support services online through the new Emotional Wellbeing Gateway.

To visit the new Emotional Wellbeing Gateway, go to: https://infolink.suffolk.gov.uk/kb5/suffolk/infolink/health.page?healthchannel=1

School Immunisation Service

Suffolk School Immunisation Team offers school-aged children their eligible vaccinations, including nasal flu, HPV, the teenage booster and Meningitis ACWY. Age groups vary each year. Elective home educated children are entitled to these vaccinations, which are not available at GP surgeries routinely. For more information, please contact the team via email: hct.csaissuffolk@nhs.net or telephone 0300 555 5055.


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