To think that a school cannot impose restrictions on what parents can do during the school day?

(317 Posts)
crosstraineraddict Thu 04-Oct-12 14:07:01

A friend of mine was telling me about something that has happened at the school where her DCs go. Several times in the past few months, parents have gone out for the day to places over an hour away, to meet friends or go shopping or whatever, and their child has been ill at school, so they've been called and been over an hour getting to the school to pick up their child.

The parents have all apparently had a letter now stating that a parent must be within half an hour of the school at all times during the school day, and that they recommend that at least one parent works locally!

Am I alone in thinking this is bonkers and unfair, not to mention dictatorial!

Just ignore it. There is nothing they can do to enforce it.

Ridiculous.
The devil in me would forward a copy to lea or governors to see their view point on it, I help care for a relative a few times a week and he lives a good hour and half from the school. Dh is a boiler engineer and travels all round the country, today he is in Wales, it would take him about 4 hours to back in an emergency, should he quit?
My flat is a good 30 mins walk away and I know people who live further away, should they move closer in case?

OwlBabies Thu 04-Oct-12 14:18:02

I struggle a bit with the 'emergency contact' thing. Who do other people use? We don't have family living anywhere near. And friends all work too. So the DDs' schools have as their emergency contacts people who aren't necessarily any closer to the school than DH and me.

Firawla Thu 04-Oct-12 14:18:11

It's ridiculous even if you do live nearby or have 'emergency contact' nearby - everyone goes out sometimes! and half hour is not that far away. You can't stay at home every single day just on the off chance school will call, which is a rare situation anyway (unless you know dc is ill and they may be likely to call, which is a bit different)

maillotjaune Thu 04-Oct-12 14:18:56

Madness, of course yANBU. Most of the people I know who live here and work in the centre of London would not be able to get there in half an hour.

Lueji Thu 04-Oct-12 14:19:57

That would be fine if school places allocation took into account not home address but work address...

wonkylegs Thu 04-Oct-12 14:23:06

Completely unenforceable and a terrible tone to take with parents as it'll obviously get their backs up. My job is approx. 20mins away in good traffic and DHs is an hour. But although I would do my very best to drop everything as fast as I can and get to my child in an emergency life isn't like that. DH is a hospital dr, he couldn't leave til somebody can cover him or if he's in surgery until he's finished. I'm often on site or at meetings not in my office or in hospital having treatment for my long standing condition (i can't get up an walk out midway) We have other emergency contacts and we'd all do our best to be there as soon as we can BUT it is up to us to figure out how to do that not the school!

DontmindifIdo Thu 04-Oct-12 14:23:44

I can't see any of our local schools getting away with that - we live in a town that's a commute to London, pretty much everyone's daddy wears a suit and gets the train to the city, (I believe pre-2008 the figure for our town was 70% of breadwinners working in banking) and I can't remember meeting a working mother who doesn't also work in London. They could insist all they like, but I would imagine most parents couldn't do that.

Lueji Thu 04-Oct-12 14:24:53

Besides, in a true emergency, they would call 999.

A child with a fever can easily be given some calpol and stay in a comfy place somewhere.
Or if sick, then be looked after the school nurse.

WelshMaenad Thu 04-Oct-12 14:27:06

But obviously all mummies just have little local jobs during school hours, don't they, and they work for hairspray money, not to actually support the household or anything. [/sarcasm]

YANBU. How utterly stupid. Mind you, I had the secretary get snotty with me once because she called me to collect DD and I was sleeping (with baby DS) and it took her five calls to my mobile to rouse me!

TeaOneSugar Thu 04-Oct-12 14:27:26

Similar thing with DDs school and car parking, we may mostly live within walking distance of school, but they don't understand that parents might be travelling onto work and picking up on the way home from work.

I live and work within walking distance of school, but travel all over the county and beyond during the working day.

It amazes me that teachers, some of which presumably have children, seem to have no concept of parents having jobs, short notice events is another good example.

GoSakuramachi Thu 04-Oct-12 14:27:44

It doesn't really matter when someone gives an instruction that they have no authority to give, no facility to police, and no available punishment for failure to adhere.

Just file it in the bin and forget about it.

margerykemp Thu 04-Oct-12 14:30:30

Utterly ridiculous!

Another misogynistic way of controlling women.

TroublesomeEx Thu 04-Oct-12 14:30:45

ARGH!!!

TEACHERS are often parents too.

TEACHERS don't make the decisions in school.

Sometimes the TEACHERS disagree with them too. They just have to toe the line.

TroublesomeEx Thu 04-Oct-12 14:31:57

Sorry Tea. blush

It's just frustrating and it would be great if individual teachers had as much power and control over what goes on in schools as people on MN seem to think they have!

MadameCupcake Thu 04-Oct-12 14:35:45

How ridiculous! I work an hour away as we had a forced move of offices from literally a minute round the corner from school. I would love not to have to travel all that way! If I had been working today then the motorway was closed for several hours both ways due to incidents so I would have been 2 hours away at least!

My husband is not that close either - half hour in good traffic!

However - if I knew I had no friends or family that in an emergency could get there quicker I am not sure I would feel that comfortable with us both being so far away - I can see where the school are coming from but it is really not their business to discuss it with parents in that way!

JustSpiro Thu 04-Oct-12 14:35:46

I work 5 minutes walk from my DD's school and DH is less than 10 minutes away by car.

If I received that letter I would go shock hmm angry - chuck it in the bin and not waste any more thinking about it tbh. What a load of cobblers.

eurochick Thu 04-Oct-12 14:39:24

It's idiotic. Ignore.

OwlBabies Thu 04-Oct-12 14:40:53

Margerykemp you are so right.

Narked Thu 04-Oct-12 14:47:18

grin Fruitloop head

Ephiny Thu 04-Oct-12 14:50:38

I can see it's ideal to have an 'emergency contact' local to the school, but not everyone will have someone they can ask, and to seriously suggest parents 'consider working locally' - are there even enough local jobs for the parents of all the children at the school?

Just ignore the letter.

Badvoc Thu 04-Oct-12 14:52:59

I think it's sensible to have an local emergency contact if you work that far away tbh.
HT sounds slightly unhinged to me....

Spuddybean Thu 04-Oct-12 14:59:21

I worry about things like this because DP (when in the country) commutes 2 hours to London (that's with rush hour trains every half hour, mid afternoon there is one every 2 hours so if just missed a train it could take 4 hours). I used to work in London also. Neither of us know anyone in our area (the few we have made acquaintance with all work and have children) which could be an emergency contact. So if i went back to work we would both be between 2.5 and 4 hours away.

Even when we lived in London our journey was 1hr 10mins at best.

PropertyNightmare Thu 04-Oct-12 14:59:37

Yanbu. That is fucking loopy.

littleducks Thu 04-Oct-12 14:59:48

I'm a bit of everything, sometimes working and sometimes at home. I'm very careful to check my phone etc. when working as I am 45-60mins away (London so need tube lines working).

However in my days off I go to asda often for more than an hour and for that period of time have no mobile phone reception [shrugs]

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now