An Exploration into the Thoughts and Emotions of Home-Educating Familes; "The world is my classroom and life is my curriculum."
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
Reason for embargo
To pursue publication of the research
This research explored the views of home-educators and the young people in home-education around their reasons for opting out of school-based education, their level of satisfaction with their decision, what education looks like to them, aspirations for the future and perceived support from the Local Authority (LA). Phase one took the form of a parent/carer questionnaire. The questionnaire was shared nationally and yielded sixty complete responses. Data has been analysed and is displayed in frequency tables and descriptive statistics. Phase two implemented a case-study methodology. Recruitment for this part of the project was extremely difficult and possible reasons for this are explored. I visited five families, speaking to eight young people and either both or one parent. There were some structured arts-based activities which I used as a vehicle to open the dialogue with the young people. These sessions largely took place in the participants’ home, or in another venue of their choosing. With participants aged ten years and over, I adopted a narrative approach, with much guidance taken from Brown and Gilligan’s (1993) “The Listening Guide.” Phrases starting with “I” are taken from the participants’ transcripts and used to create a poem which represents their story, constructs and feelings. These poems were then taken back to the young people in order to check that they were satisfied with the meaning that had been captured. Braun and Clarke’s (2006) framework for analysing qualitative data was implemented as a tool for analysis across cases. Emergent themes included the value that home-educated families place on child-centred learning, allowing children to develop at their own rates and enabling them to pursue topics of interest. Implications for educational psychologists’ (EPs) practice are discussed.
DEdPsy in Educational Child and Community Psychology