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 ' The Home of Flexi-schooling '
Hollinsclough C of E (VA) Primary School
                                                                    'Developing Potential'    - in a Nurturing School

  Lichfield Diocesan Board of Education


Welcome to our Flexi-Schooling page



We firmly believe and fully support a parent’s right to choose to home-educate their child or children.


Electing to Home Educate is a bold step for any family, its is a decision not taken lightly or without good cause.


Over time through what is a constantly evolving process, we have adapted the the mainstream approach to education in order to offer a solution to a cross-section of parents who have alternative views on how education should be delivered.


This cross-section is effectively our  'customer base'  and is made up of parents from the Elective Home Education community to those parents who have become dissatisfied with the approach of their local school and or local authority.


The quote below underpins our belief in Flexi-Schooling;


"The respect of parent's freedom to educate their children according to their vision of what education should be has been part of international human rights standards since their very emergence."


'The Special Rapporteur to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights - 8th April 1999



Firstly, our Flexi-schooling policies and methodologies are designed and implemented taking into account the UNESCO ‘4 A's’  rights-based approach to education of:

Availability, Accessibility, Acceptability and Adaptability


The 4 As framework was developed by the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education, Katarina Tomasevski.

Summarised in the following manner;


Availability: this implies that good quality education must be made available to all by eliminating all barriers, be they financial, physical, or institutional / systemic.

Accessibility: the ‘available’ education must also be made accessible to all, by eliminating all forms of discrimination and through installing flexible modes of education, particularly for the most vulnerable and marginalised who otherwise may not be reached by conventional modes.

Acceptability: it is not enough that learning opportunities are accessible; they must also be acceptable in terms of quality and relevance to the learners’ experiences and environment, and respectful of their circumstances and culture if learners are to truly benefit from education. This means ensuring that education meets the minimum standards set by governments, including the medium of instruction, curriculum and teaching methods.

Adaptability: finally, education programmes must be adaptable to the various needs of the learners rather than expecting learners to fit in with a prescribed syllabus, uniform pedagogical style or system. This is particularly important when dealing with marginalised and vulnerable children. 


Our Ideas, Approach and Policy


Hollinsclough Flexi-school rationale Hollinsclough Flexi-school presentation
Memorandum of Understanding for the Provision of Flexi-schooling 2014 The Hollinsclough - CfBT Final Report

CPD Opportunity -
Headteachers & Governors
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If you want learn more
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Remember to provide your school address including postcode, along with the full DfE number and a telephone contact
Flexi-schooling Policy 2014
Protocol on Flexi-schooling 2014
      To sign up for a place on our 'Flexi-school friends' e-mailing list, click here.



Ofsted Inspection Key Comments


September 2013 Report


 Hollinsclough is a  - 'Good School ... a leading exponent of 'flexi-schooling'


‘….inspection findings and school data confirm that good teaching leads to pupils making good progress throughout the school…’ ’… Any barriers to learning are quickly identified…’

‘… Good teaching enables pupils from a wide range of backgrounds and abilities to learn successfully…’ ‘… Strategies for managing behaviour of pupils are very effective…’

 ‘…Safeguarding systems in and around the school are rigorous and secure…’

‘…The Governing Body provides good support and challenge for leaders and managers to ensure that the school improves and moves forward…’


February 2013 interim report -  'The schools performance has been sustained'   


March 2010 Report


'Within the school's very friendly, secure, calm and intimate family ethos, pupils achieve well and make good progress academically and in their personal development. Pupils behave well and look after each other exceptionally well. They feel especially safe and are very confident in the adults, who they regard as 'kind'. Staff know the pupils extremely well and this provides the foundation for the outstanding care, guidance and support that the school provides for its pupils .... Pupils make good progress because of the effective combination of formal, informal and one-to-one teaching.'





The Legal Basis of Flexi-schooling (also see table of DfE Documents below)


Reference needs to be made to the following document -  Elective Home Education Guidelines for Local Authorities (England) 2007 Subsection 5.6 which clearly states;


5.6 “Flexi-schooling” or “flexible school attendance” is an arrangement between the parent and the school where the child is registered at school and attends the school only part time; the rest of the time the child is home educated (on authorised absence from school). This can be a long-term arrangement or a short-term measure for a particular reason. “Flexi-schooling” is a legal option provided that the head teacher at the school concerned agrees to the arrangement. The child will be required to follow the National Curriculum whilst at school but not whilst he or she is being educated at home. Local authorities should make sure that head teachers are made familiar with flexi-schooling and how it may work in practice. Further information is available in the DCSF’s guidance Keeping Pupil Registers.(21)




At present children who are using the Flexi-Schooled approach at our school, attend between 3 and 5 days per week,


Our Flexi-School parents mostly come from well outside our normal catchment area, 20 to 40 miles is not uncommon and from this it is clear the level dedication these parents have to their choice to support their child or children's educational development in this way.


We have developed close links with a number of local authorities, along with the Elective Home Education facilitator Education Otherwise. Additional information is also available from Home Education UK especially their legal section which helps to clarify the 1996 Education Act for parents who are considering the Elective Home Education choice.


Our approach as been subject to several Ofsted and SIAMS inspections and as been graded 'Good at worst, to 'Good with Outstanding Features at best. Our provision as been acknowledged by Lord Nash - Parliamentary under Secretary of State for Schools, as being an 'innovative approach to learning'.


Here at Hollinsclough Primary we can tailor our support to suit your needs and work with you to facilitate the desire to combine Home Education and mainstream schooling in a manner that benefits your children.




Comments from some of our Home Educator / Flexi-school parents


"Thank you for all that you have done for our child and consequently for our family - We have taken so many positives from it"


"We think your school is a very special place to learn and play"


"Our family feels very lucky to have found such brave little school that nurtures the children so well"

"If we lived nearer to your school we would attend every day" ,

"Although I will continue to Home Educate, your approach to supporting my child's needs is beginning to
restore my confidence in mainstream education"


Comments of note from within Government, Diocesan and County Officers, Ofsted and others


Lord Nash, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Schools (February 2013) commented in a recent letter;


"I was interested to read how Hollinsclough School has been able to increase pupil numbers, especially in a rural setting.

It is clear that the schools innovative approach to learning is popular and is encouraging parents to select Hollinsclough School above others"




Colin Hopkins,  Director of Education for the Diocese of Lichfield,  commented in a recent press release;


“This school is developing an innovative approach to education which could well be a model for

small schools in rural areas to achieve longer term sustainability.  I am delighted that Hollinsclough is

achieving pre-eminence in this field.”




Our Flexi-school Project supported by the CfBT Education Trust

Our school recently completed a Flexi-schooling / Home Education study project supported by and working with the CfBT Education Trust and others, to research into the feasibility of integrating and supporting Home Education within mainstream state provision.

The outcomes of this project offer a possible means to shape education delivery in the future.

Sir Jim Rose summarised his view of Flexi-schooling in is opening foreword of this report;

‘Flexi-schooling’ or ‘flexible school attendance’ is an arrangement between the parent and the school where the child is registered at school in the normal way but where the child attends the school only part time; the rest of the time the child is home-educated (effectively on authorised absence from school). Flexi-schooling is a legal option provided that the headteacher at the school concerned agrees to the arrangement.


Home schooling is a long-standing option that is open to parents who, for example, take the view that their children are not always best served by entering full-time, statutory education at the age of five. Some parents prefer to educate their children full time at home while others seek varying periods of part-time schooling, irrespective of their child’s age.


The purpose of this report is not to argue for or against home schooling but to describe the provision and practice of a small school where an approach to ‘flexi-schooling’ is widely acknowledged as successfully meeting parents’ wishes and children’s educational needs. Its innovative flexi-school approach enables a mix of parent-led educational activities to blend with school-based educational activities.


The report does not provide a blueprint for others to follow; it is simply a story of one school’s approach to flexi-schooling and the benefits to children and parents that have stemmed from it. The hope is that this will be a helpful narrative which sets out some of the issues for parents, Headteachers, governors and local authorities to consider, should they wish to offer the option of flexi-schooling in like circumstances.

For more background information and understanding of our approach to Flexi-schooling select from a link below.

Press Comment
Headteacher Update Ed-Yourself The Independent
Leadership Focus The Guardian 2014  
BBC News Commonwealth of Learning Diocese of Lichfield

Sir Ken Robinson - TED
Changing Education Paradigms  
Schools Kill Creativity Bring on the Learning Revolution

Other Schools affiliated to this project since our launch
Erpingham C of E Primary School Howard Primary School St Mary's C of E Primary School 

Supporting Organisations
Personalised Education Now (PEN)    

DfE Documents - the EHE documents make interesting reading re section 5.6
Elective Home Education Guidelines for Local Authorities (England) 2007 original (up to Mid-February 2013) Elective Home Education Guidelines for Local Authorities (England) 2007  revised March 2013 Keeping Pupil Registers - Guidance on applying the Education Pupil Registration Regulations 2006 (original)

© Stephen Malbon, Hollinsclough Primary School 2015

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