Friday, 10 July 2009

Meeting with MP

This afternoon a home educating friend and I met with our local MP to corner him about the Badman Review. I think it went as well as could be expected really. He had at least *heard* of home education before and did not need to be told the very basics. He even didn't ask about socialising or socialisation - hooray!
It seems he is already involved in putting together some kind of enquiry into the Government's current obsession with safeguarding and agreed that this had gone much too far. I think he was kind of on our side, but not for our reasons. He wants to oppose the Government on this because he has a typical Tory antipathy to 'nanny state' type legislation, and also I think to try and put one in the eye for the Government - but to some extent his agenda doesn't really matter as long as he's fighting to opose this for us.
However, he didn't seem very positive that this opposition would work. He seemed quite resigned to the fact that these proposals will be implemented, which was rather a depressing prospect.
We made all the points we had meant to - pointing out that safeguarding was a much more relevant issue within schools than within Home Ed, and that parental responsibility for child welfare still lay with parents, not with the Government. We highlighted the major problems with the report - the right of access and the interviewing children alone - and the current lack of training of EWOs and how this would only get worse if their role was extended without further training. At the end we left him with a big wodge of stuff to read - the stats, the points, the arguments - everything put together as the 'meeting an MP' pack by the Badman Review Action Group.
Will it do any good? I really don't know. He promised to keep us informed, and I'll keep corresponding with him to keep it in the forefront of his mind. I'm glad we met with him, at least we've done the best we could.


Jax said...

who is your MP then?

bethnoir said...

it's good that you've brought to his attention that there is opposition to the Badman review, I hope he's wrong about it being implemented.

Liz said...

I also hope he's wrong, as it really is the 'thin end of the wedge' in the state taking over responsibility for children from the parents, which will affect all parents in time, not just home educators.
Jax, I don't want to name my MP here as I try not to put anything on this blog which identifies exactly where we live.

ghrom said...

"I think he was kind of on our side, but not for our reasons." - What are your reasons then? You're not doing this because you value liberty?

Liz said...

Yes, obviously I value liberty, but currently my primary reason is home ed-related, whereas his primary reason is libertarian-related.