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Term-time holidays to be banned, with fines.....

(387 Posts)
LilyBolero Sun 19-Feb-12 14:15:35


devonvalley Sat 06-Jul-13 17:49:35

we are all going to become liars!! we have four children, how much would that cost us in fines. Bugs , summer colds, spread in familys, can prolong for days...even a week....

Naebother Fri 05-Jul-13 17:39:33

Flatmum. This appears to be a zombie thread started in feb2012

flatmum Fri 05-Jul-13 17:27:10

so hang on, let me get this straight. In the same week that they announced that schools are to be able to set their term times independent of central doE control, they are now saying that all schools will be forced to ban term time holidays.

agenda? much?

suemaemary Fri 05-Jul-13 17:23:59

So why cant we home school our kids for a week or two while we are on holiday that way the kids wont miss lessons you cant tell me the teachers don't plan lessons in advance?

I would happily do this if it ment we could have a family holiday together but as it looks at the moment we will never have another family holiday again for as long as wek have a child in education and that stinks.

mariewalker Sat 29-Jun-13 21:53:26

ive had a holiday booked for nearly 2yrs to take my family to florida in oct. my little boy has cerebral palsy and struggles with masses of people but would get so much from this experience. he also would not cope with the heat from april-mid sept when its just too hot. he already struggles to get around, its just mean to put him in that heat. why should he miss out though just because I have a 7yr old too? seems unfair especially when hes had perfect attendance this year and is 18 months ahead with his reading and spelling and above target for everything else? I would even take work with us so that he did not fall behind.

it seems unfair for a family to scrimp n save for all this time to give the kids a once in a lifetime holiday for the government to take this decision away from the head. I know they say education is free in this country but its not. we all pay taxes. its paid for by u so why dont we have the choice? at the end of the day if a child can cope with the time off I dont see the issue.

as a child i was taken away during school time for 2 weeks every year as thats all my parents could afford. i believe holidays bring valuable life experience and first hand knowledge of other places. reading about it in a text book just isnnt the same. children learn from practicals.

i can understand why it is important to get your child to school every day but my son may have chicken pox for 2 weeks in october.

OhYouBadBadKitten Sat 01-Jun-13 10:07:11


AuntieStella Sat 01-Jun-13 10:02:53

The regime for fines already exists. Labour brought it in in 2003.

It's still going to be HT's discretion. And exceptional circumstances will still exist as a reason (it's only explicit mention of holidays that's going). If you have a strong case for it being exceptional, then it is still possible.

oohaah Sat 01-Jun-13 09:54:00

Music to my ears, you are so right.

oohaah Sat 01-Jun-13 09:49:34

Not everyone has a choice about when to take their children on holiday. Most people who live and work in coastal areas have to work during school holidays. NO CHOICE!!! What do we do? This is not just about the cost of holidays. We as parents should have the choice on this, not be dictated to by government. They make laws without any thought of how they affect people. Maybe I should give up my job and Claim benefits. Then I could have the luxury of a school holiday with my child. If these teachers can not educate our children in the time they are given then they should not be teachers. It's not about the children it's about getting a good ofstead report. Please sign the e petition against this. Even if you do not agree with taking your own child on holiday in term time. You have the freedom to choose. That's the way it should stay, they are your children after all.

LittenTree Fri 02-Mar-12 14:36:15

A UK friend in Oz wrote to her DC's Head to ask permission to take some school time off. He wrote back thanking her for telling him but enquiring why she felt she needed permission. They are her kids, aren't they?!!

The ishoo about this that winds me up most is the fact that this govt are doing everything possible to apparently 'devolve' power in school to schools, cutting out those nasty LEAs, working on the idea that 'the leadership of a community school knows what's best for that school'... YET comes in heavy handed and guns blazing, dictating 'national policy' on in-school time absence, completely riding rough-shod over the Head Teacher, his knowledge of the child, the school, the timetable, the demographic.

Once again, fear of tackling the real issues (in this case, feckless, couldn't care less parenting aided by benefits which are greater than that parent could hope to wrangle if child-less) by sledge-hammering the responsible middle, those who ask permission and can give good reasons- and accept a reasonable 'no' where it can be justified.

Cuddler Fri 02-Mar-12 10:18:48

MrsHeffley-couldnt of put it better myself.

Cuddler Fri 02-Mar-12 10:15:55

fines only £100!Personally,i can deal with that!

clair247 Fri 02-Mar-12 09:50:50

Here here!

efffy Fri 02-Mar-12 09:35:15

Completely agree with bearhugs

saggarmakersbottomknocker Fri 02-Mar-12 08:58:44


INSET days aren't in 'term time'. They were taken from the teachers holidays. Pupils still get their full quota of taught days.

If your school closes for polling day you need to take it up with your local authority. Believe me schools don't want it either. It's a PITA all round.

alig99 Fri 02-Mar-12 08:47:42

I think it is totally inappropriate to fine parents who take kids out for holiday. Fines do not work in preventing truanting which I believe they are designed to do, going on holiday should not be put in the same bracket as regular truanting.
If the government brings this policy in, they need to do it in conjunction with going to a four term school year. School holidays are a nightmare for working parents they were originally designed so that children could WORK by helping bring in the harvest. Teachers now want to keep the long holiday so they can recover from work!! I know many teachers who have a second home in France and boast that they get 13weeks to enjoy it! The whole school holiday situation needs to be overhauled not more draconian legislation.

I would like to fine schools for closing at a drop of hat and having INSET days in term time because they make parents use up their precious holiday.

MR1703 Thu 01-Mar-12 20:55:00

I am a strong believer in good attendance at school, but there is a great difference between playing truant and taking a family holiday. For starters children would be aware that a holiday is a special event which they have had to have asked permission to have during term time, not a sicky because mums/dads can't be bothered to get it of bed to take the kids to school!
I took my niece and nephew to Rome for a LNG weekend. for this they had two days off school. During the trip they were able to see History and Art come to life. They were only 6 and 8 at the time and two years n they still discuss how different life was for the Romans and what it would have been like to have been a spectator at the collesseum. They were also able to learn basic Italian phrases, use Euros instead o £'s and try different food.
How have they impacted their education by taking two days of during term time?
I think the HT should be able to grant time off and this should be based on the child's current attendance record. Let's all be pragmatic about this......

Bearhugs43 Thu 01-Mar-12 20:35:34

I'd rather go to court and explain to a judge exactly why I believe my children's education and emotional wellbeing is supplemented by 5 days off school per academic year to spend quality family time and experience new things. I simply cannot afford to do this in term time (we're talking UK here not a week in the sun unfortunately).

Ultimately if I have the right to choose to educate them at home then I (SHOULD) have the right to take them out of school if I have chosen that for a weeks holiday once a year (whilst primary age). Their education is still my responsibility and I believe new experiences are crucial to it.

Tory Nanny state. Wonderful news.

jj21 Thu 01-Mar-12 13:59:40

We run a small business. If our staff with children all took their summer holiday in the school holidays the business would be bust. A combination of being unable to bill for time for hours worked (as very few people would be working), and clients leaving us as many of them need us to do extra work in the school holidays, when things are quieter for them, would make it completely unsustainable.

As it is we have never, ever taken our children away for more than 4 days due to not being able to take much time off, but we have normally had to do it in term time, as it is the only time we can get time off together. We often have one or other of us working weekends/evenings too. As a school governor and former teacher, I do feel bad about this - but I do honestly believe that our kids get more out of spending a few days camping near the seaside with all of us together than they would at school.

I am not sure that this policy has really been thought through - but it has been around for a long time, and is already almost in force in a number of Local Authorities. In ours no head teacher will authorise absence for nearly half the academic year, and this policy was created before this government was elected.

catsmother Thu 01-Mar-12 10:06:08

This thread came to mind when watching MBFGW on Channel 4 the other day. If it's to be believed - and I think I believe it - the majority of travellers' children don't attend school AT ALL past the age of 11 or so, or, at best pop in when they feel like it - say, a few days a month. Now, I don't know for sure, what, if anything, the authorities are doing about this, but, for example, one child was shown receiving one hour a week's home tutoring (as opposed to home education as most people understand it) with a local authority tutor, and viewers were told that this risible time meant her parents weren't prosecuted (or words to that effect).

Meanwhile, if your child attends school day in day out for years, and, one year you have the temerity to take them out in term time for a week for an otherwise unaffordable and rare family holiday, you will be castigated and fined.

Talk about double bloody standards. The vast majority of people taking term time out are NOT truanting, yet have been thrown into the same category (by some) as parents who don't give a damn, don't see their kids into school, don't care if their kids are roaming the streets etc. They value their children's education, but they also value decent time spent together as a family - and that's becoming an increasingly rare commodity for many families, with both parents working long hours and/or opposite shifts to make ends meet (notwithstanding the extra restrictions on leave faced by those in particular jobs with little or no flexibility). I really do wonder what's really behind this plan ? ...... dressing it up as concern for children's education is, I feel, completely disingenuous as the majority of the children concerned achieve as they should do. I personally feel it's yet another money making scheme, and can't shake the feeling that there's some sort of underlying snobbery involved - how very dare the hoi polloi want a holiday ........

Mirage Wed 29-Feb-12 14:26:56

Well,I'm booking a day to take my dds to the theatre.I might as well do it now while I can.

Iloveautumn Wed 29-Feb-12 10:01:43

Education is important but quality family time is important too.

The State should be supportive of families spending quality time together on holiday and should enable this as much as possible. If it does nothing about making holidays affordable during school holidays then it should be supportive of parents taking children out of school.

I believe strongly in the value of family holidays for children and I cannot believe that one or two weeks out of school per year will cause irreparable damage to a child's education. My db took his primary school age kids out of school for 6 months a couple of years ago and they are both now ahead of their age in all subjects.

HintofBream Sat 25-Feb-12 10:03:43

Bonsoir, yes I agree, the French system seems mad and the precise rules well worth investigating. Good luck.

Bonsoir Sat 25-Feb-12 09:17:28

"Our own grandchildren were taken out of school this term for a week's skiing. It was their first trip, they are 6 and 8. In ski school from 9.15 to 4.45, and lunch with french children, as our OFSTED inspector friend, (part of the group) pointed out, this can go down in the school records as"Education Off-Site" and not affect attendance statistics. Hard to believe, for children of this age, that it was a less valuable experience than a normal week's school."

Wow! Did you see my earlier post about language trips in France? If only the French were more enlightened about the concept of "Education Off Site."

Thinks - must investigate rules here and see what they really are. If UK heads don't always know the rules, there is no reason why French heads should be any more clued up.

HintofBream Sat 25-Feb-12 09:03:21

My headteacher husband totally agrees with MrsHeffley's view of the value of family holidays. He deals with very many disadvantaged children whose parents, for all sorts of reasons, do not provide a happy and stimulating family life. If they can manage to take the children away with some semblance of "normal" family activity he is all for it.
He also points out that any fines have to be imposed by the magistrates' courts not directly by the LEA or the school. Magistrates will not accept evidence from anyone other than the actual head, i.e. not a deputy or head of year. He reckons he has better ways of spending his time than hanging around the magistrates' courts.
Our own grandchildren were taken out of school this term for a week's skiing. It was their first trip, they are 6 and 8. In ski school from 9.15 to 4.45, and lunch with french children, as our OFSTED inspector friend, (part of the group) pointed out, this can go down in the school records as"Education Off-Site" and not affect attendance statistics. Hard to believe, for children of this age, that it was a less valuable experience than a normal week's school.

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