Faculty at residence: laws and affected kids

What is the law on home education?

In France, education is compulsory for all children, both French and foreign, between the ages of 3 and 16. Parents may choose to send their children to school; or take the instruction themselves, provided that the instruction applies only to children of the same family.

New legislation confirming respect for the principles of the republic (Act No. 2021-1109 of 24 August 2021) will tighten access to this type of education from the beginning of the school year 2022, knowing that the official goal remains to enable the child to acquire specific knowledge and skills. Raising a child in the family becomes derogatory and controls designed to measure children’s learning will be strengthened.

Mark: families whose children were educated at home in 2021 will be able to benefit from the moratorium until 2023-2024, provided that they confirm the inspection carried out by the Academic Inspectorate.

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How is home education monitored?

Checks that are already in force shall be carried out:

  • at the communal level at the initiative of the mayor from the first year, then every 2 years until the child’s 16th year;
  • and at the initiative of the academic directors of the national education services (Dasen).

In case of disagreement with the pedagogical control, Dasen may report this event to the public prosecutor.

What is the purpose of the controls?

Individual controls to which students are subject should ensure that they acquire knowledge (common ground) and the necessary skills. They are led by an academy inspector or assisted by a school psychologist. If the skills acquired are insufficient, a second check is performed. If the result of the second check-up is still insufficient, Dasen may require the child to be enrolled in school within 14 days. If refused, the perpetrator faces a 6-month prison sentence and a fine of 7,500 euros.

Mark: Pupils who have successfully passed the tests will automatically be granted authorization for the school years 2022-2023 and 2023-2024.

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Who can do home school?

Before the beginning of the school year in September 2022, families will have to make a statement to the mayor of their village and Dasen to inform him. This declaration must be renewed every year. If this instruction is not sent to the mayor and Dasen, the offending families will face a fine of € 1,500.

The (written) declaration must contain the following information:

  • Surname, first name, date of birth and address of the child.
  • Surname, first name and address of the child’s parents.
  • Address where instructions are given, if different from the address of residence.

What are the reasons for home education?

Based on this parent declaration, Dasen will issue a permit provided that one of the following 4 reasons is met:

  • The child’s state of health or disability does not allow him to be educated in a traditional facility.
  • Practicing intensive sports or artistic activities.
  • Family homelessness that moves a child out of any public school.
  • The existence of a child-specific situation motivating a particular educational project, provided that the persons responsible for its upbringing justify their ability to provide family instruction. No special diploma is required to provide teaching. The approach chosen and the teaching methods must be submitted to the inspector responsible for inspection.

In practice, the application for authorization must include a written submission of the educational project, as well as documents justifying the ability to carry out family education. It is granted for a maximum period of the school year, unless it results from the child’s state of health or handicap.

Parents convicted by a criminal judge or persons registered in the national court file of perpetrators of sexual or violent crimes cannot be held responsible for family investigations.

Good to know : failure of the academic director within two months of the application for authorization will constitute an admission decision.

Can I get financial help?

People with at least 2 dependent children under the age of 20 who are brought up in home education are entitled to family allowances. These allowances are paid each month and are adjusted according to resources, the number of dependent children and their age.

On the other hand, home education does not entitle you to a return to school allowance (ARS). If some children cannot be enrolled in school, they will be enrolled in the National Center for Distance Education (Cned) free of charge, in consultation with Dasen.

Homeschooling is eligible for college and high school scholarships.

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