My understanding is:
The law in Northern Ireland appears to be much the same as that in England
and Wales; the legislation is almost identical. There is nothing in NI
law that requires permission for deregistration. The experiences of individual
home educators seems to concur with this.
There are parents who have deregistered a child from schools in all
five of the Education and Library Board areas without any difficulty.
Some parents have been told by Board employees that pupils cannot be
legally deregistered in Northern Ireland, but there appears to be no
legal basis for this claim.
NB: do not use my deregistration letter in its current form as the
law referred to applies to England and Wales only.
However, a word of caution. From my experience of lawyers in other parts
of the UK, should you need a lawyer you should expect them not to have
much idea as to how to represent you. They will have little idea about
the legality of home education. This will be especially true in Northern
Ireland as there have been to my knowledge no cases brought before the
courts within the province.
The Law in Northern Ireland
Education and Libraries Northern Ireland Order 1986 SI 1986/594
1. The parent of every child of compulsory school age shall cause him
to receive efficient full-time education suitable to his age, ability
and aptitude and to any special educational needs he may have, either
by regular attendance at school or otherwise.
Schedule 13 Enforcement of duty imposed by article 45
1(1) Where it appears to a board that a parent of a child of compulsory
school age in its area is failing to perform the duty imposed on him
by article 45(1), the board shall serve on the parent a notice requiring
him, within such period not being less than fourteen days from the service
of the notice, to satisfy the board that the child is, by regular attendance
or otherwise, receiving efficient full-time education suitable to his
age, ability and aptitude and to any special educational needs he may
have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise.
2(1) Where, at any time whilst a school attendance order is in force
with respect to a child, the parent of the child makes an application
to the board by whom the order was made requesting ... that the order
be revoked on the ground that arrangements have been made for the child
to receive otherwise than at school education suitable to his age, ability
and aptitude and to any special educational needs he may have, the board
shall amend or revoke the order in compliance with the request unless
it is of the opinion that - ...
(d) no satisfactory arrangements have been made for the education of
the child otherwise than at school.
A home education support group for Northern Ireland can be found here
There is also a Yahoo mailing list here
The Northern Ireland Department of Education Can be found here