Term Time Holiday

(16 Posts)
FarAwayHills Wed 16-Nov-16 09:08:09

I am taking my DCs to visit family abroad in December meaning they will miss 2 days of school. It's not possible for us to do this in the Christmas holidays due to work and the cost of flights is 5 times more.

I am not going to ask for this time to be authorised as I know what the response would be. Friends have suggested I tell the school my DCs are ill but I just feel uncomfortable about lying and making DCs lie too. Should I just be honest and tell them we are going away?

meditrina Wed 16-Nov-16 09:13:44

Do not say theit're ill.

Read the threads on here about families with genuinely sick DC (some with well documented chronic conditions) who are now on the receiving end of something pretty close to harassment because of the creeping 'sickie' culture.

Check your LEA's actual fining policy. The chances are very low you'll get fined at all. But even if you were, it's a fraction of your flight saving, so just budget for it. And of course, what price integrity?

And then you can teach your DC that you have weighed all the pros and cons and made this decision, that they can talk about their forthcoming trip openly if they want to. Not be telling them not to mention it because they're about to be 'sick'. Or you lying to them about departure date.

TreehouseTales Wed 16-Nov-16 09:15:12

Don't lie sad just send a letter in now to say that"I'm just writing to let you know xyz, I'm aware it can't be authorised under current govt legislation but we wanted to keep you informed."

It's easier for teachers to know when kids are off and rhey may be able to give you all their work and pictures etc earlier.

It's highly unlikely you'll be fined for 2 days.

Wonderingwoe Wed 16-Nov-16 12:37:23

Would 5 days be fined as we may have to do this too to visit family

tiggytape Wed 16-Nov-16 17:00:31

Taking 2 days almost certainly won't be fined but will be marked as unauthorised (this has pretty much no consequences for you unless you do it frequently).

Taking 5 days though may attract a fine since this is the trigger point for many authorities when setting out how they apply the rules. Each local authority produces an agreed document on how they will deal with fines and at what point they will kick in. You could check to see if your area varies but it is highly likely to be 5 days. If the visit is for very exceptional reasons, it may still be authorised.

FarAwayHills Wed 16-Nov-16 20:33:29

Thank you all for your replies. I think honesty is the best way. I would hope that we wouldn't be fined for two days especially as they have not had any other days off this year. Its a time when they won't be missing much as there are lots of Christmas events on those days including a class Christmas party and watching a nativity play.

lunchboxtroubles Thu 17-Nov-16 15:09:24

Its a time when they won't be missing much as there are lots of Christmas events on those days including a class Christmas party and watching a nativity play.

so they will be missing out on all the important social stuff at the end of term

up to you of course whether you take them, but I think the teachers who have worked hard on that stuff would find it pretty offensive to have it lumped as "not missing much"

MidniteScribbler Fri 18-Nov-16 05:29:36

Don't bother lying. Contrary to popular belief, teachers aren't actually stupid.

prh47bridge Fri 18-Nov-16 09:04:21

Why assume that the time won't be authorised? It is at the head teacher's discretion despite the fact that many would like you to think otherwise. It won't do any harm to ask. The worst that can happen is that they say no and you tell them that you are going anyway.

FarAwayHills Fri 18-Nov-16 22:27:46

Sorry lunchbox but since when did spending an afternoon in school watching a DVD and eating haribo become 'important social stuff'confused and since when did social stuff become more important than family.

I have no hesitation taking them and they are not at all bothered about missing out at school. I don't think I will ever regret that my DCs have missed the class Christmas party but I would always regret that my DCs didn't get to spend time with their grandparents because I prioritised 'important social stuff'.

tiggytape Fri 18-Nov-16 22:38:49

That's a bit harsh FarAway. The ideal situation is that you shouldn't be choosing between family and school. The school year is only 39 weeks long and with weekends on top so that's an awful lot of time (175 days) every year for family stuff.

And whilst your official end of term events might just involve Haribo eating, many schools will be performing a play that the class have rehearsed (and will be hard to do if 5 children skip the last few days) or joining in with fun stuff that's there's not always time for on regular days and that a teacher may have gone to a lot of effort to organise. Taking two days isn't likley to cause you any problems in terms of attendance or fines and of course you want to see family but equally, there is value to many end of term events and teachers often do invest a lot of effort making it a nice time for their class.

cosmicgirl83 Mon 21-Nov-16 14:24:43

Hi there,
I want to take my children out of school 1 hour early on the last day of term to go on holiday. Does anybody know if I can be fined for this?

mouldycheesefan Tue 22-Nov-16 09:27:14

Just tell the school the truth. You can't be fined for two days. I take mine out for a week every year and have never been fined.

prh47bridge Tue 22-Nov-16 12:45:25

You can't be fined for two days

The law is currently unclear. The High Court earlier this year decided that the Isle of Wight could not fine a parent for taking his daughter out of school for a holiday. However, that judgement appears to be at odds with previous court rulings. The matter is going to the Court of Appeal. If the Isle of Wight win the OP can be fined for two days absence, although it is relatively unlikely that she will be.

lunchboxtroubles Tue 22-Nov-16 12:48:56

faraway you've clearly made up your mind that this stuff is unimportant. We'll have to agree to disagree. Your kids may not agree.

drspouse Wed 23-Nov-16 10:38:02

Our DS is not yet compulsory school age and will not be next term, and we are taking him out for a holiday. The school are OK with this though will mark it unauthorised (but they cannot fine us if he is not yet compulsory school age).

However if the absence is due to the parent's employer not allowing annual leave at another time, the school asks for permission to contact the employer. It is ultimately up to the LEA to decide whether to pursue a fine, but I believe that the information from the employer may help (I am not sure if the school having relevant information from the employer would mean the school marked the absence as authorised, or stopped the LEA from pursuing it, though).

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