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Help! fines & taking 4yr DS out of school inc Xmas to see family he's never met in NZ

(15 Posts)
Jellylove Mon 07-Jul-14 19:33:59

It's a trip that has to be done , it's too far to go for a couple of weeks. My DH's parents aren't in good health and have never met my 2 children. We wanted us all to have a Christmas together as well.
I have also heard that you don't get fined for the terms before your child turns 5, if they are absent, which would be in January, is this true?
It's an important trip for the family at both sides of the world, and it's culturally important for my kids too as they are maori, they will really benefit from time with this side of the family.
Am I likely to be fined?

AuntieStella Mon 07-Jul-14 19:47:19

It's true.

As you have chosen to enrol your child in school you are expected to make sure they attend. So the school may well take a dim view of it all, and 'softer' attendance management sanctions support might kick in.

But you cannot actually be fined until he reaches statutory school age.

Jellylove Mon 07-Jul-14 20:19:31

So it's not even up to the term he turns 5 in, they can't fine until he is actually 5?

InTheNorth123 Mon 07-Jul-14 20:32:31

You can ask for permission to take up to two weeks off school. Could you combine those two week, with the two you get at Xmas anyway and go for 4 weeks. Given the circumstances I think you'd likely be given the time off. Yes, true you cannot be fined until they are 5, but would prob be a good idea to ask permission first and explain.

Jellylove Mon 07-Jul-14 20:40:54

Yes I am fully incorporating the Christmas school holidays so that we make full use and plan to take 2-3 weeks extra, hopefully using weekends wisely with flights etc.
I am making an appt with the head teacher but wanted to know where I stood before I went to see her smile

neolara Mon 02-Nov-15 23:29:57

Just go. As the child of immigrants from the other side of the world, I believe its very important a child to knos their family, their cultural history and get a sense of where they come from. It will give them a sense of who they are and where they belong. There are lots of things that are important for children and a good education is just one of them. Knowing your family and cultural identity are also both really important.

Wolfiefan Mon 02-Nov-15 23:31:22

Go and pay the fine if you get one.

SocksRock Mon 02-Nov-15 23:38:50

Statutory school age is the start of the term following the child's 5th birthday. So a January born child isn't of statutory school age until the start of the summer term. You can't be fined in those circumstances.

Etak15 Mon 02-Nov-15 23:44:50

Agree with pp's child doesn't legally have to be in school until 5, so you don't need to ask permission just let them know that he won't be in school those weeks.

AnthonyPandy Mon 02-Nov-15 23:49:55

In the time since she wrote this she's been and come back again and everyone's received the postcards a long time ago!

Happyminimalist Mon 02-Nov-15 23:52:33

It's a once in a life time experience and you shouldn't let the state dictate how you run your family. He actually doesn't have to be in school till the term after his 5th birthday anyway. But even if you were fined it would be minimal. There really is a huge difference between your son experiencing such a one off trip and a teen playing truant throughout his GCSE years.

Fill in the forms, make it sound semi educational and stress the poor health of DH's parents. The head is permitted to give permission when there's 'exceptional circumstances'

Happyminimalist Mon 02-Nov-15 23:53:09


neolara Tue 03-Nov-15 17:20:37

I hope she went and had a fantastic time!

Youknowit Fri 20-Nov-15 22:29:46

You need to decide whether your child is of compulsory school age. If the child isn't, then you cannot be guilty of an offence contrary to s444 of the education act and so you cannot then be fined.

northernlites Sun 15-Jul-18 14:52:43

(Name change)
We did go and have a fantastic time thank you,
The school were very accommodating, no hint of unease about the absence and they told us to have a great time!

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