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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!

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

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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.

ThreeBeeOneGee Fri 17-Jan-14 20:27:24

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.

NoArmaniNoPunani Sat 18-Jan-14 15:31:07

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.

Sparklingbrook Sat 18-Jan-14 15:39:18

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


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