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Time off school for a family funeral

(45 Posts)
chitofftheshovel Mon 27-Feb-17 10:13:14

I have a family funeral next Tuesday to attend. And will be taking my two children with me. They are in Year 5 and Year 7. The funeral is for a for a very elderly relative (she was 101) so will be a celebration of her life and a chance for the extended family to get together, some of whom I know well, others I have never met (I feel this is relevant).

In good weather and traffic conditions the drive takes 6 hours. The funeral starts at 12pm, which would mean leaving by 5 am to be certain to get there on time. I would then be pretty shattered after a long drive, we would need breakfast at some point and would arrive in crumpled clothing.

Or I could do the drive the day before. If we left after school realistically we wouldn't be able to leave until 4.30 pm which would mean not getting there until at least 10.30 pm, but would have to stop for our evening meal so it would be later. If we left during the day on Monday I would be under a lot less pressure.

Similarly after the funeral and wake I don't really want to be driving for at least six hours.

As a family we are very geographically wide-spread and my children don't get to see my close relatives very often, let alone their extended ones.

My ideal would be to travel up on the Monday and back on the Wednesday but WIBU to request 3 days off school for a family funeral?

FirstSeemItThenBeIt Mon 27-Feb-17 10:15:55

I would request anything, I would tell the school that's what is happening. It's a funeral, it's non-negotiable.

Oldraver Mon 27-Feb-17 10:15:57

I would do it..its not unreasonable at all

Dulra Mon 27-Feb-17 10:16:15

3 days seems a lot. Could they do a half day on the Monday so you could leave about 1pm?

I am Irish so funerals are very much big family gathering so it would not seem unusual for kids to be taken out of school for them but I know school attendance is a lot stricter in the UK

MatildaTheCat Mon 27-Feb-17 10:17:58

I wouldn't request it at all. I would email the schools and inform them of the absence. The schools don't get to say whether you can go on one day or another.

MatildaTheCat Mon 27-Feb-17 10:19:25

And actually, attending a 'happy' funeral has a very important educational value IMO.

troodiedoo Mon 27-Feb-17 10:21:40

I've requested 3 days off for my grandads funeral which was a 6 hour drive away. They authorised it but said any further absence that year would be unauthorised (lucky it was June so wasn't an issue). This was in year ten. Like you I was very worried about asking and was thinking about cramming travel into 2 days. Don't, just ask for 3. A family funeral is a valid reason for absence and no school would dare say no.

FuzzyFalafelz Mon 27-Feb-17 10:22:27

Just tell the school what you're doing. It's their choice how they mark it.

3 days is fine. It's not a holiday.

However if you want to cut it down timewise to 2 days, take them out after afternoon registration on the Monday. About 1.30pm.

MrsJayy Mon 27-Feb-17 10:22:52

Time off for a funeral far away is non negotiable imo just email schools tell them the children will be off for x days 6 hours away is realistically a 2/3 day trip imo

WatchingFromTheWings Mon 27-Feb-17 10:23:24

I wouldn't ask them, I'd tell them. But as pp suggested, maybe do a half day on the Monday.

StewieGMum Mon 27-Feb-17 10:25:03

I've done this. The school was very supportive and classed it as an essential part of growing up.

Primaryteach87 Mon 27-Feb-17 10:28:03

Just do it.

TheOnlyLivingBoyinNewCork Mon 27-Feb-17 10:29:27

This has got ridiculous. You don't ask the school for permission to go to family funerals, you just go! Go when works for you, the school has nothing at all to do with it.

Girlwhowearsglasses Mon 27-Feb-17 10:32:15

This is an important family event and you don't need to negocitate about whether you should get up at 5am to drive the same day. Your DCs will get a lot out of a celebratory funeral like that - finding it about her, and getting to see family they wouldn't see otherwise. It's def a no brainer

IamFriedSpam Mon 27-Feb-17 10:32:52

As PP said just tell the school this is what's happening and be willing to catch your kids up with missed work over the weekend. It's a totally reasonable request and that's far too long a drive to do in one day (you're surely going to need a rest half way as well).

Beachedwh4le Mon 27-Feb-17 10:32:53

I would do it, but with the half day Monday to avoid the potential drama

MaximumVolume Mon 27-Feb-17 10:33:28

Theoretically, if you pick them up after afternoon registration on Monday they'll only officially miss Tuesday & Wednesday, but you'd need to decide whether arriving early evening suits you.

LagunaBubbles Mon 27-Feb-17 10:34:14

This has got ridiculous. You don't ask the school for permission to go to family funerals, you just go!

Totally agree with this.

SantasLittleMonkeyButler Mon 27-Feb-17 10:36:04

I would just inform the school too.

It's a funeral, not a leisure activity.

Hulababy Mon 27-Feb-17 10:36:12

Dd in year 10 just had time off for two funerals - one great grandparent and one an elderly family friend. I didn't ask for time off. I just called on the day to say they were absent and sent a letter afterwards. Some of her teachers knew beforehand as Dd told them due to tests, so the teachers organised for her to do the tests either before or after.

I work in a school and have no issue with children missing school for a funeral, wedding etc.

Tomorrowillbeachicken Mon 27-Feb-17 10:37:01

I'm tell them, not ask them.

chitofftheshovel Mon 27-Feb-17 10:38:20

Thanks all. It seems pretty unanimous that 3 days is not unreasonable.

Request was probably the wrong word but I do want to give the schools advance warnings.

As has been pointed out it will be good for the children to experience a funeral marking the end of a life as opposed to the taking of a life too early, especially as their first funeral.

I could send them in for a half day on the Monday. I'm reluctant to as the schools are half an hour apart, neither in the direction we need to travel in so picking them up would add quite a lot to my travel time.

TheTartOfAsgard Mon 27-Feb-17 10:40:24

My dc were given 4 days authorised absence from different schools last year when we had to travel for a funeral.

Kiroro Mon 27-Feb-17 10:40:28

This has got ridiculous. You don't ask the school for permission to go to family funerals, you just go!


2014newme Mon 27-Feb-17 10:41:16

I would request authorised absence which at our school requires a form to be completed.
Obviously still go anyway regardless of outcome but ay least ask for it to be authorised

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