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AIBU to take DS (7) out of school for an afternoon so that I can go to an appointment?

(51 Posts)
WeAreEternal Thu 06-Feb-14 10:40:47

The apointment is for tomorrow.
I cant reschedule the appointment (medical related) as they can't fit me in again until late March, I only got this appointment because someone else canceled last minute.
I really need this apointment, I have been waiting for two months already.

The appointment is in a city 90 minutes away at 2 PM, and is expected to last 1-2 hours, there is no way I would be able to get back in time to collect DS from school.
I don't have anyone who can collect him for me, I have asked but nobody is free.

My only option is to take DS with me. I could take him to school for the morning and then collect him before lunch.

My problem is that I do not want to explain to the school what the appointment is for, it is personal and I don't feel that it is any of their business.
They have history of difficultness and I am concerned that they could refuse to let DS have the afternoon off to attend my appointment.
Although I'm not sure what they could actually do.

Can the school refuse to let me take him out of school in the middle of the day?

I don't like the idea of him missing school, but I really need this appointment.

I am tempted to just call in the morning and say he is ill, but I know that is unreasonable.
And if anyone remembers my other thread they wouldn't believe it anyway without proof.
(Yes the school require proof is a DC is off school sick)

dozily Thu 06-Feb-14 11:24:36

In that case I would stick with your original plan of collecting him from school at lunchtime.

Whatever you decide to do, please tell the school the truth though as otherwise you're putting your son in a difficult position. (Do you expect him to say he was ill too?)

Minicreamegg Thu 06-Feb-14 11:24:40

LOL at Bramshot!

Keep him off the full day.

Hope the appointment goes well.

TamerB Thu 06-Feb-14 11:27:04

Madness! I should just say that my child was ill but I have no doctor"s note, prescription etc. Doctors, pharmacists etc are going to love this! Do they know?

elliejjtiny Thu 06-Feb-14 11:28:52

I will be picking both ds's up early next Tuesday as DS2 has a hospital appointment. I've done this before and it's been fine. If school have form for being difficult I would just tell them it's for a medical appointment and not be specific.

BarbarianMum Thu 06-Feb-14 11:32:13

Tell them the truth. Hopefully they'll manage to find room at the Afterschoool club. If not, you take him.

Do not miss the appointment. Do not divulge your medical details - just tell them its medical, urgent and private.

Wolfiefan Thu 06-Feb-14 11:32:43

This situation is so daft. (Not your fault!) I would contact the school and say you plan to collect him at lunch unless they would rather keep him after school until you are able to collect him. That'll quieten them!!

ILoveWooly Thu 06-Feb-14 11:32:58

I would simply arrange to collect him early for a medical appointment. The rest is none of their business.

WeAreEternal Thu 06-Feb-14 11:34:08

Apparently most parents have started saying their child has a temperature and sickness/a cold and buy calpol and cough syrup and send the receipt in, apparently they thing that is acceptable proof of illness, regardless of what is actually wrong with them.

DS does have a cold at the moment so I could say that, but I don't like lying.

It is however likely that the school with either point blank refused my 'excuse' for the afternoon off or ask for proof of the appointment, which I am not exactly happy to provide as it will inform them of the nature of my appointment, and I don't want to share that.

TamerB Thu 06-Feb-14 11:44:05

Don't ask them- tell them!

TamerB Thu 06-Feb-14 11:45:43

They can hardly refuse to hand him over and twist your arm until you give details!
Say you are collecting him for an appointment and it is a private matter that you are not willing to discuss.
No need to be rude, just polite and firm.

bigbluebus Thu 06-Feb-14 11:46:07

How ridiculous of the school to make these rules. DD is on day 3 off sick. She has not seen a doctor or pharmacist and I haven't purchased any Ibuprofen or Calpol as I already have supplies in the house. I can see parents in your area stockpiling medicines just to get receipts as 'evidence' although clearly a receipt doesn't prove anything

It would appear that you have no alternative other than to keep him off. What is the worst that can happen if you tell them the truth. Are they really going to issue a £60 fine for unauthorised absence (or surely it should only be £30 for 1/2 day). He is 7 FGS, it's hardly going to be detrimental to his education.

Bunbaker Thu 06-Feb-14 11:53:26

"There is no need to lie, say that you will be collecting him at lunchtime for a medical appointment. There is no need to go into detail."

Just do this^^

And if the school asks for proof just tell them it is private and confidential. What ever happened to patient confidentiality?

Just don't lie.

TamerB Thu 06-Feb-14 11:59:28

Exactly bunbaker. It really isn't an issue. I can't understand all these people who think you need to lie or explain in detail.
The proof of illness is the most stupid thing that I have ever heard! Doctors don't want their surgeries full of children spreading germs so they can write a letter- you won't get them to write one anyway. A bottle of calpol lasts ages- no way am I buying new ones for a receipt!

WeAreEternal Thu 06-Feb-14 12:58:01

They will accept proof of a GPs appointment if you can't get the doctor to write a note (or don't want to pay for one) the surgery will print out an 'appointment card' on headed paper with DCs details and the appointment details.
It is ridiculous but the HT decided to do it to cut down on people taking sick days 'willy nilly' when their DCs aren't really sick enough to be off school. Aka the HT is doing everything he can to try and get attendance numbers as high as possible.

I know it shouldn't be an issue at all, but I know they are going to be difficult about it, as they are about everything, and it makes me question whether or not I'm the unreasonable one.

Maybe I should just accept it is going to be marked as an unauthorised absence or 'unauthorised family holiday' as they mark it and accept the consequences whatever they may be.

TamerB Thu 06-Feb-14 13:07:30

If mine have been off with cold, sickness etc I don't waste the doctor's time.

jigsawlady Thu 06-Feb-14 14:12:56

It sounds like the school are all talk, they might try and scare you with saying it will be unauthorised but just stand up to them and say -

We have to attend a medical appointment and I will be takkng him out. Im not required to provide proof, if you do continue to harass me for proof or mark this as an unauthorised absence then I will have to address this situation with ofsted and the local authority to check this policy is enforceable .

You need to stand up to them just once then they'll back off. Their probably trying tk bully all the parents at the school into never havkng their dc off so their attendance goes up. They know 90% will be bullied into sending sick kids in but they will be prepared that a handful of parents wont stand for it.

mummymeister Thu 06-Feb-14 15:17:45

It takes a lot of balls and energy jigsawlady to do this and perhaps weareeternal just doesn't have buckets of that at the moment. of course it is completely ridiculous. they can and will fine for just one day. they might not do it in your area but they do in others. I would certainly start ask this twat of a head teacher to put these policies to me in writing at the very least. then when the OP is feeling a bit better she can take this up with the LEA. unfortunately heads have all the power to make the decisions. some heads are brilliant and sensible and some are the opposite.

LegoStillSavesMyLife Thu 06-Feb-14 15:27:45

I just say (and have done) that he needed the time of school for a medical appointment - I wouldn't specific who it was for. But I guess that is tricky if you need to provide proof of medical appointments.

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Thu 06-Feb-14 21:05:03

Do the other parents you've asked have contact details for any of your DS's other friends' parents? If you explain the situation I'm sure they'll collect your DS from school even if you don't really know them. I did for someone in my DD's class in a similar situation even though I didn't really know her that well.

thenamestheyareachanging Thu 06-Feb-14 23:05:50

keep him off sick, buy some calpol and send them the receipt - will that do them? Sounds ridiculous, any GP would get annoyed by having to see every child with every cold or tummy bug going just to get a note for school, surely?

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Feb-14 23:10:33

Just tell the School you have an appointment and can't get back in time for Hometime. I've had to do it before when I or DD have had an appointment. I've had to keeP Ds off too as they would have been no one to pick him Up.

mummymeister Fri 07-Feb-14 10:54:41

the OP would do that Misspixie but they have told her that if she takes her child out for any reason then it will be coded unauthorised with a possible fine. You are assuming that they are being reasonable. they are not.

mouldyironingboard Fri 07-Feb-14 11:43:07

I'd take a carrier bag full of snotty tissues into the school as 'proof' of a cold!

mummymeister Fri 07-Feb-14 11:46:55

someone on another thread did something very similar when her DC had diarrhoea and sickness. still just shows the stupidity of this. have been on another thread where no action taken for 90% attendance and someone else where they expect 85% attendance over 4 weeks. it just is so unclear for parents. there is a law but then each LEA has their own views and policies and on top of that each H/T has their own views and policies. absolute postcode lottery as to whether a day off is a fine or nothing. bonkers.

Nanny0gg Fri 07-Feb-14 13:13:25

Can you post this in legal?

Surely schools have no right to know the actual details of medical appts for either children or parents?

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