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Will I get fined (unauthorised absence?)

(15 Posts)
BlessThisMess Tue 03-Nov-15 21:05:32

I've just found out the Headteacher has refused permission for my 11yo DD (Year 6) to have the day off to come to my MSc graduation ceremony. My 14yo DD will be there (she is home educated) with my husband and my Dad. Obviously we want DD2 to be there too. I know in theory we could be fined, but is it likely to happen in practice? Her attendance level is 97%. Anybody else had a day's unauthorised absence and what happened?

Wolfiefan Tue 03-Nov-15 21:06:46

Nobody on here can guarantee whether you will be fined or not!
Take her and be ready to pay if necessary.

BlessThisMess Tue 03-Nov-15 21:15:14

Well I wasn't asking for a guarantee! Am just curious as to whether other people have 'got away with it' or whether people pretty much always get fined.

TeenAndTween Tue 03-Nov-15 22:01:44

Our LA only fines for 10 sessions (5 days) unauthorised within academic year, I think.

I can't see any LA fining for 1 day missed. Though I may be wrong.

yeOldeTrout Tue 03-Nov-15 22:10:25

Our LA policy is they have to miss 4 days in a term to trigger a fine. But policy changes without notice, so no promises. Anecdotally, I doubt you'll be fined.

Hissy Tue 03-Nov-15 22:16:31

FAR more inspirational and educational for your dd to see the proud culmination of all your hard work academically, than one day of year 6 course work. She can catch up if need be.

Your head is an idiot. Challenge it and inform them you're going anyway. You won't be fined for a single day.

BlessThisMess Tue 03-Nov-15 22:16:46

Oh, that's helpful, thank you!

JeffsanArsehole Tue 03-Nov-15 22:18:46

your Head is an idiot

Unlikely to be up to the head. Instead it's the LEA. Lots do not have discretion over this.

BlessThisMess Tue 03-Nov-15 22:19:04

Yes, Hissy, that's what I think. DD2 was always so encouraging of my work and wants to be there, and I want her to see me get the reward so she is encouraged and inspired to work hard too.

TeenAndTween Tue 03-Nov-15 22:21:06

The head isn't 'an idiot'. Their hands are tied. They are only allowed to grant absence in 'exceptional circumstances' which are defined-ish and mainly 'even more exceptional' than a boring (sorry) graduation ceremony.

Just because they can't authorise, doesn't mean they wouldn't think you were justified in taking her.

Congratulations on your MSc.

Hassled Tue 03-Nov-15 22:24:07

The fine trigger seems to vary but basically your attendance has to drop below a certain percentage within a certain number of weeks (an example is below 85% in a 6 week period, which equates to 4.5 days off). If attendance is otherwise good and there will be no other absences in the foreseeable future, I can't imagine you'd be fined.

Hissy Wed 04-Nov-15 06:08:39

My friends son was just given the day as authorised - in fact 2 days to allow for travel - to see his brother's graduation....

I also know someone who is taking her year 6 child out for a week to go away for Christmas down under and the head has authorised that too (different schools)

Their hands are NOT tied, they DO have discretion which they are able to exercise.

With the recent court case where a bloke alleged he needed to take his dd to Orlando for her personal wellbeing and he won... I'd say the LEA has no chance of making anything stick.

Google your LEA policy on this and contact them directly for a position if poss.

Hissy Wed 04-Nov-15 06:15:36

NAHT guidance

superram Wed 04-Nov-15 06:21:05

Even with the new guidelines it is very unlikely they will fine you. The head cannot authorise the absence but not do I think they are on the phone to the la telling tales either. I wouldn't worry.

BlessThisMess Wed 04-Nov-15 10:27:46

Thank you Hissy, that's very useful. I am going to take my DD anyway, but I may just point to the Headteacher that this particular absence is rare, significant, unavoidable and short and therefore classifies as 'exceptional'.

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