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Term time holiday - all school hol leave refused!

(107 Posts)
Sootica Sun 04-Sep-16 07:33:04

Kids are yr 5, yr 2 and have a preschooler
DH has just moved to a new role emergency services. In this role apparently people go in to apply for leave at midnight exactly 1 yr before the date they want because its first come first served and only 2 can be off at any one time in of team of 17, nearly all have kids and dates are released for booking exactly a year in advance. The upshot is he has been refused leave for every school holiday this year and nothing will change as there is a long waiting list of people in front of him for every school holiday in the event anyone cancels or leaves the team. He works bank holidays if they fall on his shifts so eg at Xmas has only 26th and 27th Dec off in the period 24 Dec to 1st Jan. He also works 3 out of 5 weekends, I work in the week, Easter next year he's working til 2am all over that long weekend.
I'm not being unreasonable right? I know there's no entitlement to a holiday yadda yadda but we work hard and don't get much family time at the weekends due to shifts so I'm going to take them out of a school so we can have a week break together. I'll probably do it in early July and would hope kids' attendance to be high by that point as it always is save the year we couldn't shake off a recurring sick bug.
Bastard shift working

totalrecall1 Sun 04-Sep-16 07:35:39

You have a genuine reason - I take mine out without as good a reason as you! We usually have our leave given unauthorised, and it's up to the school whether or not they fine you, but you can still go with no other reprucussions - I wouldn't worry about it, just book the holiday

ShowOfHands Sun 04-Sep-16 07:36:48

Welcome to the bleak side of emergency services life! Don't forget that thay can be called home at a moment's notice whilst actually on holiday. Or holidays can be forcibly cancelled just before you're due to go.

Sootica Sun 04-Sep-16 07:38:32

He's been in the emergency services for a while Show it's just this new role didn't realise the leave situation was so bad. Previously there were three of them in a team and they shared out 2 weeks leave in summer holidays each

ihatethecold Sun 04-Sep-16 07:38:54

I would go and speak to the head teacher.
My dh is in the police and we always got authorised leave for a week in June after half term.
They understood the shifts and difficulties of being off during school hols.

Sootica Sun 04-Sep-16 07:39:03

Thank god we've never had leave cancelled huge sympathy to you as it sounds like you have!

Mommawoo Sun 04-Sep-16 07:40:02

You'll probably get flamed for this but I would take my kids out if school to enjoy a family holiday with their father too. There's far too much pressure on kid's attendance just so schools can reach targets and then travel companies cash in on that by raising prices.

Bollocks to that.

exLtEveDallas Sun 04-Sep-16 07:42:34

Schools are 'allowed' to authorise TTH for Emergency Services/Forces personnel with proof of enforced holiday periods. I had to do it once when I was serving as we'd been given a leave ban for the whole of August. In my case DD only missed the last week of school and there were no repercussions.

MargoReadbetter Sun 04-Sep-16 07:45:45

Huge sympathy from me as well. Been there too many times. I'd take them out of school. I did that in the past, also primary school DCs then. If I remember well I did the last week of term in July. The HT was ok with that.

sashh Sun 04-Sep-16 07:45:48

Sounds like a good reason to me.

I would add that the last week of term is probably the best time as there is rarely any new learning going on.

donajimena Sun 04-Sep-16 07:49:45

I'd do it in a heartbeat. In fact I have and for lesser reasons than yours.

jimbob1 Sun 04-Sep-16 07:51:31

Definitely take them out. A good family life is as important as their education. They need good memories of time with Dad.

Hassled Sun 04-Sep-16 07:52:57

The school can authorise holiday "in exceptional circumstances" - you'd hope that your headteacher would see this as an exceptional circumstance. Even if they couldn't authorise the whole of the absence, it's worth asking if they could authorise a few days of it, just so you keep the unauthorised absence level down.

manyathingyouknow Sun 04-Sep-16 07:53:27

Tell your husband thanks for the great job I'm sure he does flowers and also to the rest of you guys on here who work in that field.

Speak to headteacher and see what can be done.

lilydaisyrose Sun 04-Sep-16 07:54:28

Gosh, I've never heard if thus before - feel so sorry for you! My husband's a teacher and I'm not keen on term time holidays from stories he tells, but am 100% behind you!

And being called home? I have never heard of this! What is an emergency services job that would do this? Police, ambulance service? I genuinely have no experience of this area, so please excuse the stupid question!

Sootica Sun 04-Sep-16 08:01:42

Lilydaisy yes police do get recalled luckily never happened to my DH but I know Met officers who get leave cancelled a lot eg for the London riots
I always make sure we book insurance at the time of booking of holiday and that it does cover cancellation of leave for military and emergency service workers

chocolateorange88 Sun 04-Sep-16 08:03:31

Do it. I'm a teacher. I find that the kids you need to worry about are definitely NOT the ones whose parents have taken them away for a week on a nice holiday. The experience can often rejuvenate them and have a positive impact on learning.

RandomDent Sun 04-Sep-16 08:03:33

Emergency services always get their leave authorised in our school.

RandomDent Sun 04-Sep-16 08:05:52

Oh and I know it's not the same everywhere but early July would be great from my point of view - my reports are written and assssment data all submitted the week before! grin

Not that a week would make much difference for that.

Ledkr Sun 04-Sep-16 08:06:49

Dh had no summer leave over the London olympics and schools were asked to be considerate. When I applied the head said no so we just went anyway and I was never fined.
Poor you, it sounds awful, I think we have it bad but we obviously don't hmm

Sootica Sun 04-Sep-16 08:07:18

Thanks manyathing

I think my headteacher will be sympathetic as she authorised a few days at the end of last year to fly abroad for a family event but she wrote down all thr attendance records over every year at the school and we basically only for it due to good attendance record (it was last 3 days of term and they were 99% before that)
I wasn't sure if she'd be able to authorise a whole week which is basically just because we want a holiday but I will speak to her and hope their attendance remains good until then!
Last week of term DH has already looked and can't get!

I've managed to get a couple of long weekends around inset days but they are both this term and then we'll have no chance of anything next year until October 2017 (DH will be in work on the holiday booking system at 12.01am this year to try to get that one!)

Ledkr Sun 04-Sep-16 08:10:51

I've also heard of officers being called back. It's never happened here although there's a lot of cancelled rest days due to court with no regard for childcare not arranged.
To be honest when we are in France on our main summer holiday, dh rarely switches on his phone.

lilydaisyrose Sun 04-Sep-16 08:11:43

I really do feel so sorry for your family - I had no idea this happens to people working in emergency services - even more respect to you all.

Collarsandcutoffs Sun 04-Sep-16 08:12:38

Id go for two weeks!
Def speak to the headteacher and explain I honestly can't see why they wouldnt authorise it given those circumstances.

That leave situation sounds a nightmare though- do some people manage to bag more than one period of leave during the holidays or is there just not enough to go round? Wonder if there is a fairer way of them allocating it?

wheresthel1ght Sun 04-Sep-16 08:19:26

Please thank your hubby! He and his colleagues are amazing.

TTH has built in exceptions for forces & emergency services staff so the head should grant leave without any issues. The only thing I can see that would effect it would be the fact your yr 2 would be due to do SATS around the time you are looking at. I would have a word with the head teacher next week and explain and find out what dates you need to avoid.

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