It's back to school this week in England, Wales and Northern Ireland but tens of thousands of children will be staying at home.

This is why Adoption UK has written an open letter on behalf of all of the adoptive parents who are home educating their children. Adoption UK is calling on the government to financially support these parents to home educate their children and for home education to be a choice, not a last resort.

The letter, below, has been co-signed by 18 adoptive parents who home educate their children.

Sir,

Our children will be among tens of thousands who will not be going back to school this week. We are adoptive parents and we are home educating, either by choice or as a last resort.

Most adopted children have had traumatic experiences in their early childhood, and live with a legacy of learning, developmental and social challenges.  

Some of us have chosen to home educate because it allows us to tailor education to our children’s complex needs.

Some of our children have been excluded from school – adopted children are 20 times more likely to be excluded than their peers. Others have been quietly told that home educating was the only way to avoid a permanent exclusion. 

Many home educators have to give up their jobs, and are paying for tutors, activities and materials, all without the benefit of the thousands of pounds that schools receive to support adopted children. Families who home educate should be supported with funding and with a constructive relationship with Local Authorities. 

Home education should always be a choice, not a last resort. Children who have had a tough start in life deserve an equal chance to learn. 

Yours

Home educators:

Tracy Chapman
Sue Chiu
Hayley-Jane D’Adamo
Helen Gates
Julie Graham
Mandy Grice
Shirley Hackling
Helen James
Jill Jarvis
Foye Jones
Debbie Meadows
Katy Perry
Lydia Price
Julie and Stephen Turnbull
Rebecca White
Sarah Widdicombe
Helen Avey