Definition of a Parent/Carer in Education Law
It’s important that schools and local authorities are aware that parents may be recognised differently under education law, than under family law. Section 576 of the Education Act 1996 states that a ‘parent’, in relation to a child or young person, includes any person who is not a parent (from which can be inferred ‘biological parent’) but who has parental responsibility, or who has care of the child.
For the purposes of education law, the department considers a ‘parent’ to include:
- all biological parents, whether they are married or not.
- any person who, although not a biological parent, has parental responsibility for a child or
young person - this could be an adoptive parent, a step-parent, guardian or other relative.
- any person who, although not a biological parent and does not have parental responsibility, has care of a child or young person