The Express and Star is reporting that an educational establishment set up to provide for children who may have been expelled from school charged £25,000 a year for each pupil placed there, an investigation has found.
Ofsted investigated 162 suspected illegal schools last year, a number of which took in children who had been or were at risk of being excluded from school.
The education watchdog’s chief Sir Michael Wilshaw told the BBC he feared some of those running such alternative establishments are “lining their pockets”.
The BBC recently shadowed Ofsted’s team of inspectors as they investigated a number of unregistered schools. They reported that one set-up saw a public bar in a golf club used as a makeshift classroom for teenagers.
One unnamed owner, working out of a community centre, told the corporation she believed she was operating within the law and providing good support to pupils, even though it was not registered as a school and did not have qualified teachers.
Sir Michael, who retires as head of Ofsted at the end of the year, said: “It seems bizarre to me that a parent can take a child out of a school and not register them with the local authority.
“It seems not just bizarre but dangerous that they can’t investigate what’s happening to these children.”
Do you think there needs to be tighter restrictions on checking where children are going to school? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or on Twitter. ~ Sophie
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