Who feels their own education was damaged by the holidays they had in term time?

(106 Posts)
lljkk Fri 17-Jan-14 05:37:18

Judging by the strength of opinion on MN, there must be loads of you.
Speak up!

Really, really not. And we did it fairly often. AAB at a level and doing a masters as we speak

Livvylongpants Fri 17-Jan-14 06:01:37

Meh we survived and left with a decent education. Me and my sister both went away in the may of our gcse year. It's much easier to revised lying in a sun lounger by a pool!

JeanBodel Fri 17-Jan-14 06:04:38

Actually, I do remember in GCSEs that I was away when they did matrices in maths. When I came back they had finished the topic. We had some sort of test/mock and I clearly remember having to leave two pages blank because of this.

I'm sure I managed to catch up though because I got an A in the end.

pollywollydoodle Fri 17-Jan-14 06:05:33

the only time my parents did it , was for a week at the start of 6th form...it felt like it took ages to catch up with all the admin and work

Greythorne Fri 17-Jan-14 06:10:29

Me! I went on a term
Time exchange in 4th year, missed how to balance chemical equations innChemistry, NEVER got to grips with the subject after that. Nobody knew I didn't know how to do this thing and I would bluff it. Got a D in a Chemistry.

cory Fri 17-Jan-14 08:17:23

I went on 3 short visits to an English boarding school, learnt English to a high standard, did O-levels in subjects I did not study at home and had no difficulty in keeping up with my studies back home. My db did something similar with a German school.

tiggytape Fri 17-Jan-14 10:19:34

There's a long enough thread on this in AIBU if you feel strongly about it and plenty agree with you so you wouldn't be alone - it is a 50/50 split by the looks of it.

People who find their way to the education section of an online parenting forum are also unlikely to be the ones this is aimed at so you're probably asking the wrong people.

Up until recently many reasoned adults took a rational decision to very occasionally have a term time holiday if their child wasn't behind and would be helped to catch up.
In recent years this became totally abused and caused chaos for teachers who (despite parental perceptions) can't "just give him a worksheet" to catch up. That's why it changed. Not because people of the 1960's - 1980's felt they'd missed out but because, in the age of greater holiday expectations, more of today's children were being harmed by parents who took weeks out of school year in, year out regardless of their child's attainment and attendance levels.

Metebelis3 Fri 17-Jan-14 10:49:57

I never went on holiday during term time. Most people didn't.

Draughts Fri 17-Jan-14 10:54:54

Not in the slightest. Saying that is was only ever for 5 days at the most, but I don't feel it held me back at all. I also have a great work ethic. That particular argument really gets on my nerves!

creamteas Fri 17-Jan-14 10:57:42

No term-time holidays ever.

To be honest, we hardly went on holidays at all, as we didn't have enough money.

Which is probably why I think the 'oh a holiday is so necessary for family time' argument pretty laughable.

handcream Fri 17-Jan-14 11:00:44

Honestly - I think if you are taking your kids out of school you are then expecting 'others' to sort out the lessons they missed whilst they were away....

Didnt the family that have just been fined not have a great attendance record? Or have I got that wrong??

redskyatnight Fri 17-Jan-14 12:31:11

I'm not sure how anyone could know if they were affected - unless they were able to clone themselves, put one clone in school and take one clone on holiday.

I missed a week of school when I was 12. Because I had chicken pox . I missed the teaching of a new maths topic. And although I have since gone on to get a maths degree from Oxbridge, I still have a mental block about the topic. So I would say that being absent did affect me. (though of course maybe I would have had a mental block about the topic anyway, who can say).

dannydyerismydad Fri 17-Jan-14 12:49:58

I never took holiday in term time, but had 2 weeks off for an operation in year 9 and struggled to catch up with what I missed.

I had it drummed into me that life isn't fair and that rules are there for a reason.

Norudeshitrequired Fri 17-Jan-14 13:34:45

I wouldn't say that my education was damaged by term time holidays because the school I went to was awful and I took responsibility for teaching myself using the local library. However, I missed the first week of senior school due to going on my first ever holiday and I struggled to settle as everybody had already met and made friends. I would have hated to be taken on holiday during term time every year.

Ragwort Fri 17-Jan-14 13:36:39

I just can't ever remember anyone (certainly not me) having time off for holidays in term time, it just wasn't done. But I am pretty ancient, went to school in the 60s grin.

MrsSippie Fri 17-Jan-14 13:48:05

I was taken out of school at the end of my third year (year 9 in modern ways) to go to Canada for two months. Ended up with 6 good O levels, 3 A levels and have been pretty ok ever since <shrug>
dd1, who is now 24, spent two weeks out of school in year 5 to go to Greece, ds now 13 has been on holiday three times out of school aged 4, 7. and 9 and dd now 8 missed two weeks of nursery aged 3. They are not yet delinquents, nor do they need assistance spelling, adding up, socializing or making intelligent conversation.

MrsSippie Fri 17-Jan-14 13:49:14

However, I had 30 plus operations as a child where I had to be out of school for many weeks, which did hold me back in Maths - the hospital school felt sorry for us and let us do the subjects we liked grin

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 17-Jan-14 13:52:25

Not me! And we were taken out of school for at least a week nearly every year.

sapphirestar Fri 17-Jan-14 13:54:22

Never affected me at all, although I was slightly pissed when my parents and 2 sisters went away for a 2week holiday in the middle of my gcses leaving me at home. Just one year couldn't they have waited for the holidays so I could go too?!!

AChickenCalledKorma Fri 17-Jan-14 18:56:46

I never had a holiday in term time. And I always felt really cheesed off when other people in my class did.

SiliconeSally Fri 17-Jan-14 19:05:27

No wonder you were pissed off, sapphirestar. There is no way I would go on hol with the other siblings and leave a GCSE age child at home to do their exams!

Did you pass?

morethanpotatoprints Fri 17-Jan-14 19:11:23

We never had holidays abroad as my parents couldn't afford them.
Occasionally we would holiday in Britain though.
You didn't go during school time then.
The education system of the time completely failed me and I left with sweet FA
Don't think helps much but another view.
Anything you couldn't afford, you did without.
It wasn't an entitled generation tbh.

ItsATIARA Fri 17-Jan-14 19:23:17

Oh god, yes sapphire, my parents took my DB away on holiday while I was at boarding school. I have still never been to the place in question, and for geo-political reasons the thing that was unique about it no longer applies, so I can never have that experience. 35 years later, if the location in question comes up, I point out loudly that "I wouldn't know, because I've never been there, unlike you three." I think I'll give it another 15 years to make it a nice round half-century, and then I'll let it go grin.

So no, I never had a term time holiday, but I was off the day they did long multiplication (I caught up).

rabbitstew Fri 17-Jan-14 19:26:59

I am 100% certain that had I been taken out of school for a holiday at some point between the ages of 4 and 9, it would have done me no long term, or short term, harm whatsoever.

DameDeepRedBetty Fri 17-Jan-14 19:36:13

I twice missed a week of school due to family problems, the first time probably took about a term to sort out, the second time was the beginning of the academic year and I never really caught up the missing time academically at all, as well as not settling into the new classes as I was not with my friendship group.

Paintyfingers Fri 17-Jan-14 19:36:19

Definitely not - in top three pupils academically as it ended up and always had at least a week on summer holiday in primary.

Plus had half of the year before gcse exams off due to a health condition. Would only have had 75% attendance at best, but it made no difference.

MirandaWest Fri 17-Jan-14 19:39:20

I never went on holiday in term time. But my parents were teachers so it would have been a bit difficult really smile

NotCitrus Fri 17-Jan-14 19:50:06

I had the last week of spring term off almost every year in primary school, so we could go to my family in America.
Probably a couple days for holidays in Europe around autumn half term a few times, too.

I don't think it did harm except in the last year of primary when the horrible teacher made me promise not to tell anyone but it was ok for me to have time off but wouldn't be for the "thick kids like Name and Name", within earshot of other children.

I was shocked by the threads implying that state schools do ski trips and field trips during term time in secondary school!

I may have ds miss a few.days similarly for holiday in primary school, but not secondary where there's much less repetition.

NinjaPenguin Fri 17-Jan-14 20:21:05

I never went on a holiday as a kid, not even a weekend away, but one of my richer friends missed her GCSEs to go to California! I can't remember what actually happened to sort our the mess, but I know she wasn't exactly keen on going on holiday that time.

Tiredemma Fri 17-Jan-14 20:22:45

No. Although I think I was damaged by having to go to the same caravan site in Rhyl every year. In term time.

SirChenjin Fri 17-Jan-14 20:22:47

Nope, not here. We had a few family holidays during term time and it didn't do me any harm - academically, socially or otherwise.

DH missed the first couple of days of the Autumn Term one year in primary school. He can still remember feeling like the only one who didn't know what was expected or what the routine was. sad

sapphirestar Fri 17-Jan-14 20:38:43

SiliconeSally Yes 11 A*-B grades!
I did get sent a couple of postcards but it still smarts 11years later, now I have a dd myself I can't imagine buggering off on holiday and leaving her to sit her exams alone!
I didn't mind so much at the time, one of the 2 weeks I got to live at my best friends house and on days with no exams we would sit in bed in our pjs all day watchings DVDs, only getting dressed 10mins before his parents were due home from work!

kilmuir Fri 17-Jan-14 20:40:08

My parents never took us out of school for a holiday.

Saracen Sat 18-Jan-14 01:07:52

People never went on termtime holidays when I was at school. I can still remember the huge bollocking my sister and I got when, having spent Easter visiting our dad, our return flight cancelled and we missed the first day of school.

I did however fake illness regularly miss a lot of school due to illness, and no one particularly noticed whether I was there or not. There was never much to catch up on. In fact, my decision to leave school a year early came when I had missed a week of school and upon asking the teachers what I had missed, nearly every single one of them replied, "nothing really". I thought that if even my teachers did not believe they had done anything of value in a week's time, I had better look elsewhere for an education!

lljkk Sat 18-Jan-14 14:45:58

Replies including my own:

No one ever went in term time: 3
We never went in term time: 7
Went at especially wrong time which was a problem: 2
Went regularly or for big time stretches, not a problem: 11
Yes caused problems but got an A anyway: 1
Yes caused problems that persisted or mattered: 3

Not scientific, but not resounding, either!!
Of those who did miss school due to holidays, the majority said that it caused no discernable harm.

meditrina Sat 18-Jan-14 14:57:36

No, not resounding.

And as the 'school experience with absences' and 'school experience without absences' cannot be directly tested, you need a big observational study: large representative cohort, accurate absence records, and clear evidence of attainment.

Such studies have been done; and show that the higher the absence, the worse the attainment.

Anyone know of good quality studies which include reasons behind authorised/unauthorised absences? Without those, the only thing which can be said with certainty is that missing school means worse performance. Which is adequate as underpinning the situation that has been around since the 1980s that children enrolled in state schools must attend unless ill or in special/exceptional circumstances.

I was at school before that, btw, and never had term time holidays.

ItsATIARA Sat 18-Jan-14 14:59:26

Chunky minority saying that it did cause problems though. Obviously these results are not meaningful, but if they were, you probably wouldn't choose to do anything with that level of risk of harm.

Norudeshitrequired Sat 18-Jan-14 15:22:02

We can't really ascertain whether it causes problems based on forum replies though because people can only say whether they believe it made a difference, they don't know for certain if things would have been different. Even if somebody managed straight A's at GCSE despite an annual fortnight term time holiday there might be a small gap that affects them at A level, or a small gap that wasn't big enough to affect overall results but is a gap Nonetheless or whether they had to work particularly hard to catch up or whether the other pupils were affected because the teacher had to go over stuff to fill a gap for the holiday child. There isn't anything scientific or particularly telling about the replies that have been posted here.

lljkk Sat 18-Jan-14 15:28:26

By those lines of logic, we'd never get out of bed (life is too unsafe) and you can't say that it did cause harm, either.

Still looking for people who want to share their actual experience rather than offer opinions on principles.

I never went in term time either. I don't think it happened much at private school, parents wanted to get their money's worth

meditrina Sat 18-Jan-14 15:34:02

if you want vignettes of people's lives, then it's better just to say so, rather than dress it up in false "scienciness"

hoppinghare Sat 18-Jan-14 15:34:43

We only went on holiday during the school holidays. You wouldn't go on holiday when you didn't have annual leave. It's the same thing.

nkf Sat 18-Jan-14 15:37:41

I didn't go on holiday till I was a grown up apart from a Girl Guide camp. I didn't suffer either.

nkf Sat 18-Jan-14 15:38:10

Sorry. Not complete. Didn't go on holiday. Did brilliantly at school. Didn't suffer from lack of holiday. All well.

We were never taken out of school in term time.

nkf Sat 18-Jan-14 15:39:58

And if you want a bit of data, I believe that any studies done show that there are implications for achievement if attendance fall below a certain level. I am sure I've read that but I can't link to it. Schools don't care about attendance purely out of spite.

PaperBagPrincess Sat 18-Jan-14 15:41:02

We didnt ever take holidays outof school, but rarely went anywhere anyway, as my parents were broke.

DH has find memories of camping trips around Europe that lasted well into September and being taken back to Jamaica to see his relatives several times during term time for quite long periods. He did well at school and says the trips were memories for life.

PaperBagPrincess Sat 18-Jan-14 15:41:13


eurochick Sat 18-Jan-14 15:41:14

I only ever did it in primary and never for longer than a week (before or after half term). I don't remember any adverse effects.

Norudeshitrequired Sat 18-Jan-14 15:42:39

You have quoted 'stats' based on the replies and then state that you only want people to offer actual experience when they argue that your stats are nonsense......ooookay!

Tiredemma Sat 18-Jan-14 15:43:10
vicarlady Sat 18-Jan-14 15:43:12

I am an old l

vicarlady Sat 18-Jan-14 15:43:22


HarrietSchulenberg Sat 18-Jan-14 15:43:39

In the long term, no, but we didn't go away that much anyway. We did have a week in Cornwall in October when I was 9 (equivalent of Y5, I think) and when I came back I'd missed reading most of the Owl Service and the whole class was talking about it, some maths that took me (what felt like) ages to catch up, and so much gossip that I felt like I hardly knew my friends! I still remember feeling lost when I came back to school, and it was over 30 years ago.

We also had a week in Scotland in April when I was 15 with no such ill effects, in fact I caught up with the work really quickly. I ended up with a good clutch of O Levels and was the highest scoring girl in my year at A Level (preen), so no long-term damage there!

I've taken my own children out of school when in very early Primary years (Nursery and Y2, I think) but even without the threat of a hefty fine I'd think twice now that they're getting older.

Mamafratelli Sat 18-Jan-14 15:46:14

I was an A* student and my mum used to regularly let me have days off at primary school to go to Manchester shopping.

vicarlady Sat 18-Jan-14 15:50:56

I am an old lady now - well, 62 - and it was not uncommon for girls in my senior school to go on holiday during term time. Many of our fathers, including mine, had their annual leave allocated to them on a rota . Even now I can remember seeing the display of holiday postcards which accumulated on the form room notice board during the summer term.
Did it do any harm? Well, there must have been some catching up to do but it isn't a lasting memory.

EBearhug Sat 18-Jan-14 15:59:19

We did it throughout my school career - a week next to October half-term, and a week next to the May half-term. We couldn't go in summer, because it was harvest, and if we didn't sometimes take picnics up to the harvest field, we hardly saw Dad at all - and so Mum insisted we went away from the farm, as a family, so Dad got a proper break.

We spent holidays doing things like going round museums and looking at geology, and I used to read stuff like extracts from the Royal Commission which lead to the 1842 Mines Act, and stuff about the Chartists and the Newport Rising and so on (South Wales autumn holidays, all that,), so I really don't think my education suffered, other than my holidays did influence the path I later took (a history degree, with a dissertation on the history of coal mining.) We did any extra homework we were given, and I spent a lot of the rest of my spare time reading and writing stories anyway. Plus once I was in the 6th form, I arranged to stay with a friend for the school week, and got the train back home to stay with them after the half-term week, because I didn't want to miss any school. (I may not have been very typical...)

My parents requested it every time (I remember having to ask for the forms from the school secretary), and it was never refused. I don't know if that would have been different if I hadn't been near the top of the class most of the time, and otherwise, I had a very good attendance record - just 3 days sickness for my entire school career.

hoppinghare Sat 18-Jan-14 16:03:30

It probably doesn't do much harm if only the odd family do it. However because holidays are so much cheaper off peak nearly everybody would like to do it and they all probably want to do it when the weather is good. It would be very difficult for a teacher to keep all their pupils at the same point if there are always a few of them are on holiday during May, June, July and September.

zingally Sat 18-Jan-14 16:23:51

Never did it, as far as I can recall... I think I may have had 1 day after a return from Easter at Disney World, age 7.

And I had a day off to go to the Royal Show with family aged about 14.

lechers Sat 18-Jan-14 16:43:28

My holidays were always in term time, because my father worked for British rail, and in those days, the was a factory 'shut down' fortnight when you had to take your holiday. It the was early July every year. So that was our holiday every year, we never had a choice, and no it never affected me.

I'm now an A level lecturer (and before that a secondary teacher), and in 15 years of teaching have never seen a child get significantly behind because of a week's holiday. I do recommend that students are sensible about when they choose their term time holiday.

WorrySighWorrySigh Sun 19-Jan-14 10:01:05

Well I wasnt taken out of school for anything including being ill. I can remember going into school feeling like absolute poo. Not sure what I or my fellow students got out of that one!

My parents were of the view that everything should be sacrificed at the alter of education. I came out with okay results, nothing special.

I got taken out of school once to go to Cornwall for two weeks and it didn't affect me in the slightest. I'm very glad that we went as it was the only family holiday we ever had.

DH was regularly taken out of school to visit relatives abroad and his education most certainly didn't suffer.

At secondary school pupils often went on school arranged trips such as exchanges, ski trips, a Mediterranean cruise, all in term time. In fact, once the entire sixth form went to Italy but I suppose if everyone went it doesn't really count.

This was all in the seventies and eighties btw.

cory Tue 21-Jan-14 09:20:09

I am sure the problem is sheer numbers.

When I was at school in the 60's going abroad was rare so it wasn't that difficult for a teacher to cater to.

Also a child who had been abroad could contribute something unusual and valuable to the class: I remember a classmate of mine going on an African safari and coming home to give us a slide show: it was all tremendously exciting and we learnt lots. But then there were fewer opportunities for learning those things elsewhere in those days, so the teacher was probably grateful to anyone who made it come alive a bit.

These days, the benefit of having yet another child in the class to go to Thailand must be extremely limited. And at a time when so many people can afford to travel the disruption is proportionally greater.

Seeline Tue 21-Jan-14 09:26:18

We were never taken out of school. Our UK based holidays were always during school holidays, if they happened at all.
What really annoyed me was the time wasted in class having to go over stuff that other kids had missed when they were on holiday. I didn't think that was fair at all.

Paintyfingers Tue 21-Jan-14 10:08:02

Cory, we used to go out of school to go to holidays in the uk eg camping in wales. Really wasn't uncommon in my primary school in the late 70s/early 80s.

cory Wed 22-Jan-14 09:46:22

Yes, Paintyfingers, I think what happened was, it was quite unusual when I was at school and then it became increasingly common to the point where schools felt they could no longer cope.

lechers Wed 22-Jan-14 19:23:53

Except, Cory why do you think schools can no longer cope?

I am a teacher (15 years) the vast majority of my friends are teachers (not just the ones I work with, also the ones I trained with - they're primary, I'm secondary) and of all my teacher friends, only one actually has a problem with term time holidays. The rest of us do not find it problematic at all. The ban comes from government, not the schools, and most teachers I know do not actually mind it at all.

You even look at threads on mumsnet, and I see lots of other teachers who do not have a problem with it too. Hell, I even take my own children out of school for their holidays (I have fixed holidays, at a different time to my children).

wortluck1 Sat 25-Jan-14 11:54:46

Hi everyone, I'm new to Mumsnet so hello!! I'm so totally outraged by parents being threatened with fines for school unauthorised absences, I've started a petition. Please sign, pass on, support in any way as I think we all need to act on this to protect and preserve our freedom to act in the best interests of our children. Do let me know your thoughts!!


wortluck1 Sat 25-Jan-14 11:57:39

Hi everyone, I'm new to Mumsnet so hello!! I'm so totally outraged by parents being threatened with fines for school unauthorised absences, I've started a petition. Please sign, pass on, support in any way as I think we all need to act on this to protect and preserve our freedom to act in the best interests of our children. Do let me know your thoughts!!


I agree with those who say how can you know? You don't have duplicate lives where you can try out different things and compare results.

Anecdotally I know only one person who took holidays out if school regularly. She never lived up to the potential the school apparently saw in her. She was in the top set for O levels but didn't pass many and didn't do A levels after doing O level resits at 6th form. Make your own minds up about that. She does however do holiday rep for a small holiday business, escorting tours to exotic places so maybe it did her some good!

I disagree about teachers minding about holidays. They do in Ds's school. They find it disruptive if children miss chunks of work and have to catch up with the rest of their group. Seems obvious to me that they would!

Paintyfingers Sat 25-Jan-14 12:16:49

Bertha, it depends what results you got. As I got all As at A level and went to Oxbridge I think it could safely be said my weeks away weren't a major issue.

FanjoForTheMammaries Sat 25-Jan-14 12:22:27

I was off sick for 10 weeks in ny Higher Year at school.

Got 6 As. But..I still wouldn't take term time holidays.

FanjoForTheMammaries Sat 25-Jan-14 12:23:15

It clearly affected my typing.

TheIncidentalGoat Sat 25-Jan-14 12:31:35

I agree with Cory re the numbers issue. I've spoken with 4 parents just yesterday regarding authorising term-time holidays. They were asking for between 5 days and 25 days and those four families had a total of 8 children between them.

I never had term-time holidays when I was at school, it wasn't the norm in the 70s though neither was going abroad. Holiday was a week in a caravan in Wales usually. I've taken my own children (3) out once for two days.

Yes Paintyfigers but as others have said they did well yet still have gaps in knowledge, mental blocks or just bits of the curriculum they were uncertain about despite getting A's so maybe there is an impact that isn't quantifiable by looking at grades alone.

And you could also say, well done to you for doing so well but maybe others who have a different mind set or work ethic, or family support or were slightly less able wouldn't have achieved their potential. Your experience is not useful data by itself, it is just your experience and doesn't in this context mean anything. It is because some will be adversely affected by term time holidays that there is a reluctance for anybody to take holidays. It is all very well, with the benefit of hindsight, to say it was OK but it might not have been.

Just as an aside, when DS1 started secondary, we were told that missing 16 days at secondary level equals one GCSE grade. It comes from research apparently although what it means in real terms I don't know. Is that one grade for one subject or all subjects across the board? Whatever, absence has a quantifiable effect.

Paintyfingers Sat 25-Jan-14 13:55:41

I would be interested in whether the research is more a product of the type of parent likely to allow a lot of absence. Disengaged parent, allows lots of absence, doesn't encourage completion of homework/back up school/say it is important.

So a mc parent normally very engaged with encouraging educational attainment taking child away for a week may not impact much.

Bowlersarm Sat 25-Jan-14 13:59:43

Term time holidays! You've got to be joking. My parents would never have taken us out of school for a holiday.

TheIncidentalGoat Sat 25-Jan-14 14:01:23

Yes, I doubt the research differentiates between types of absence and whether families are otherwise supportive of education.

wonkylegs Sat 25-Jan-14 14:04:39

I'm another one who never took term time holidays neither did DH (his parents were headmaster & teacher though) and won't consider them for DS. It's not so much the odd week off but more the principal of picking and choosing rules to suit. I try to get DS to pay attention and heed rules, how can I expect him too if I only take notice when it suits me!

OK I haven't found the research I referred to yet but this report is interesting.

I draw your attention to the 3 bullet points on the first page.

35% of children get 5 or more GCSE's if they miss 10-20% of school.

73% of children missing less than 5% of school get 5 or more GCSE

There are 195 school days in the year so 10% is only 19.5 days. 5% is 9.75 days, so as little as extra 10 days or so out of school could halve your chances of getting 5 or more GCSE's. 2 week holiday can do a lot of damage.

The fact that some of you were in the 35% who did get their qualifications and went on to bigger and better things doesn't really help those for whom those extra days did a lot of damage.

The supportive parents thing is a bit of red herring. Naice MC parents wouldn't take their children out of school, not in my experience. It is those on lower incomes who can't afford school holiday prices who are happy to take their children out of school even though it goes again the rules. Supportive parents tend to want their children to be in school as much as possible to get the best education they can and to follow the school rules.

Paintyfingers Sat 25-Jan-14 17:00:37

Doesn't prove cause and effect though Bertha.

Paintyfingers Sat 25-Jan-14 17:01:22

Incidentally, due to a health condition I missed 1/2 of all school in year 10. Still got 8 grade As at gcse.

lljkk Sat 25-Jan-14 17:12:38

All the parents at my (1970s state) primary school were teachers, doctors or lawyers. It was just that kind of neighbourhood.
Perfectly normal for kids in my school to take 1-2 wks holidays in term time every yr.
Thus I conclude that teachers-doctors-lawyers are obviously not in the Naice MC.
So, er, Who is Naice MC?

lechers Sat 25-Jan-14 17:27:35

Hmm, a couple of things about that report -

Firstly, it is a report, produced by the government, who clearly have an agenda against term time holidays. This is NOT independent, peer reviewed research on the matter. Please do not be fooled into thinking it is.

Secondly, Why does it not cover those that have between 5 and 10% off school a year. Why does the figure go from less than 5% to more than 10%?

To take a week's holiday term time is 5%, given that the 10% mark is usually accepted as 10 school days.

So from this, shall we conclude that to take a week's holiday has no negative effect whatsoever...? (And yes, that is the general consensus of most research out there!)

lechers Sat 25-Jan-14 17:47:14

Have you read the report in full? Those statistics you were quoting - if you go down and read the chart, it breaks down into the type of absence, and shows that children who have up to 4% absence over key stage 4 due to holidays actually get better results than those students who have 100% attendance.

Well, that's that then. From now on, my children are always going to have a term time holiday, so I can improve their results grin.


lechers Sat 25-Jan-14 18:09:17

Sorry, I may need to correct myself here.

The government report states:
"Latest figures show that almost 400,000 pupils miss 15% of schooling a year - the equivalent of having a month off school."

So if a month is 15% - a fortnight would be about 7.5% and a week would be about 3-4%. Is this how they've defined it...?

Sparklysilversequins Sat 25-Jan-14 18:17:16

I was an army brat and moved around constantly - 8 schools altogether. I did ok, not as well as I could have done but I firmly put that down to a total lack of support or concern from parents. Never asked about homework or offered to help as far as they were concerned it was completely the schools concern and nothing to do with them. They had no understanding of them actually having a part to play.

I just do not agree that before GCSE years that the occasional holiday effects anything in the long term and as such I take dd out for a fortnight each year. Sometimes the whole lot in one go or two one weekers.

I am actually really confused about the strength of opinion against it on here tbh, I have never come across that in RL.

EBearhug Sat 25-Jan-14 18:29:20

There are 190 teaching days in a school year, aren't there? So 15% is 28.5 days.

A week is about 2.5%, a fortnight is 5.25%. (I rounded to the nearest 0.25, hence the slight difference - and if I'm wrong about the 190 days, then I'm talking even more rubbish than usual anyway.)

I'd have thought for someone to miss 15%, they'd either have to be badly ill, to go overseas to see family or something for an extended time, or to be a serial truanter. Probably not that many are also in the same group of people who also take a week out for termtime holidays, I would have thought. (But I may be totally wrong.)

Those of you who think it's fine to take your dc on holiday in term time, do you think there should be no rule at all - I.e. anyone could take their dc out of school any time in the year for a holiday? For as long as they like? If not, what would the rule be? Every child allowed two weeks out each year? So you would most likely never have a class without a bunch of absentees who need to be caught up by the teacher afterwards. A bit chaotic.

MarianneEnjolras Sat 25-Jan-14 19:05:35

I missed an entire termand a half of year 8 (due to bullying - I wish I'd been on holiday!) and didn't do any catch up work (I was never sent any) and no-one home educated me either.

In the long term it never made any difference. I got 10 GCSEs all with grades ranging from A* to B.

TamerB Sat 25-Jan-14 19:09:11

I was never taken out for a holiday- my parents wouldn't have even considered it.

RufusTheReindeer Sat 25-Jan-14 21:19:41

Didn't go on holiday in term time as far as I can remember

Went on holidays abroad once every two years from 12 until 18 so 4 times!

Have taken my children out of school for holidays while they were in primary school

Ds1 is now in year 10 and I have only taken him out of school for three days, that was in year 9 and there are no plans to take him out again

Dd and ds2 may miss a week of school next October (2015) haven't decided yet

RufusTheReindeer Sat 25-Jan-14 21:24:14

holmes just seen your question

I have never and would never take my children out for longer than a week in primary school. In senior school it would depend on the circumstances of the holiday to be honest, it's not something I would do as a matter of course

If there was to be rules I would say that no more than a week and at a suitable time, for example the last week of the summer term. I don't yo be honest know that many people who take their children out of school

goblindancer Sat 25-Jan-14 21:28:40

We were taken out for 3 weeks every June in primary and never missed anything. I think for under 12's it's far more important to experience other cultures than be at school. I have taken mine out at least once a year and will continue to to so. School targets are not my concern, my children's experiences are!

fluterby Sat 25-Jan-14 21:46:21

We never were taken out in term time. But I feel so sad my dc will probably never go abroad until they finish school at 16/18. Because the prices are so high I can't imagine us ever being able to afford it in school holidays. I think that is really detrimental to them. It's especially annoying when all they do is watch films and faff about in the last week of term.

EBearhug Sun 26-Jan-14 11:03:01

do you think there should be no rule at all

I do think there should be rules and guidelines, but there should be more room for the discretion and judgement of the headteacher than there is with the current rules - i.e. more like it used to be.

FanjoForTheMammaries Sun 26-Jan-14 11:07:53

You can experience other cultures in the holidays though so it's not really that you are providing a better education than those who send their children to school for the whole year.

FanjoForTheMammaries Sun 26-Jan-14 11:08:30

Although I see your point about tbe cost fluter.

I know what you mean about the last week of term, but don't you think that holiday companies and airlines would cotton on pretty quickly and put the prices up at those times if everyone started being allowed to take their dc out then?

TamerB Sun 26-Jan-14 15:50:54

For the children the end of terms are fun, and not a time they would want to be out.

RufusTheReindeer Sun 26-Jan-14 19:03:30

I've never taken my children out at the end of term, it's the best week!!!

I don't think it should be a blanket everyone has that week off but I do agree with other posters that the flexibility that seemed to be there would be good

TamerB Sun 26-Jan-14 19:14:28

Adults have a different view, to them the end of term is a waste of time- sometimes you need to look at things from the eyes of a child.

Hellosquiffy Tue 28-Jan-14 11:00:37

Myself and older brother had 100% attendance up until the later years of high school when our mother became poorly, but we couldn't afford holidays therefore never did holidays. Younger sister and brother however had some time off for what we saw as ridiculous reasons, again no holidays, and both now in their 20's can barely read and struggle with maths etc.

I know it's not the same but it does go to show that big chunks of missed learning can/does affect some DC.

LoofahVanDross Tue 28-Jan-14 11:41:10

We often had time out of school to go abroad. Especially as dad went on frequent business trips and if it was anywhere intresting we would all go along.l No problem with getting the time off school and all had a decent education and career.

Have done exactly the same with my dc. No problems thus far with gaining good A levels and GCSE's or Uni offers.

Mountain out of a mole hll all this fining and stuff.

The only thing I would say is we never expect the teacher to explain anything missed, nor would we ever ask for them to set work whilst we are away. That would be down to us.

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