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How to take kids out of school for a 6 week holiday?

(43 Posts)
Nateismine Sat 11-Mar-17 16:23:11


We are in the lucky position of being able to take a one off 6 week holiday from work. This will be a trip of a lifetime. We want to take DS age 6 and DS age 9 to NZ.
This will need to be during term time.

How can I do this? I know this won't be authorised so do I need to 'deregister' them from school, homeschool for the 6 weeks and then reapply for a place back at the school again? I don't want to mess the school around but really want to take up this trip of a lifetime.

Any advice welcome.

NapQueen Sat 11-Mar-17 16:24:15

There may not be a place for them on your return though.

Toomuchocolate Sat 11-Mar-17 16:26:05

I would just ask the school directly what you need to do. I doubt they will make you give up your school place as it's only 6 weeks not a year.

EduCated Sat 11-Mar-17 16:26:16

Is the school under-subscribed? There's no guarantee of spaces on your return. How would you feel if you were given spacess at a different school?

imjessie Sat 11-Mar-17 16:26:43

Just go and speak to the head , the problem is they will miss so much school it could have an effect on them moving forward but you need to have an honest chat with the head and see if they can make you a plan etc to keep them on track . Don't just disappear as you will be in all sorts of trouble !!

Nateismine Sat 11-Mar-17 16:29:48

It's a small village school so it's highly likely to get the place back. I'm quite happy to homeschool during the trip. Do you think the headteacher would be able to arrange something or will we need to deregister?

poisonedbypen Sat 11-Mar-17 16:32:35

Only one way of finding out! Ask.

AndHoldTheBun Sat 11-Mar-17 16:37:22

It's we have actually done this (Australia to visit family, 3 DC aged 7 and under). However, we managed to overlap school holidays by two weeks, so missed about 3 and a half weeks of term.

We did some number and letter work each day, and the eldest two kept a diary and wrote stories about what they had done and seen.

We didn't get, or expect, approval from the school, we just informed them that was what we were doing and we would try to keep them up to date with class topics.

BUT, and it's an important but, we live in and are of the uk with school catchment areas, and we lived within catchment so there was 0 chance of us coming back to find our DC had no school place.

AndHoldTheBun Sat 11-Mar-17 16:38:33

*an area

Lowdoorinthewal1 Mon 13-Mar-17 18:17:23

The thing you need to avoid is being fined £240 a day (£60 per child per parent) for 6 weeks.

For this reason, yes I think you will need to have them taken off roll and register them as home schooled. If you are sure you will get your places back this shouldn't be a problem.

Butterymuffin Mon 13-Mar-17 18:23:31

Does it really have to be all within term time? Couldn't you go two weeks before Easter, say, and have the two weeks school holiday in the middle so that at least you're 'only' missing 4 weeks of school? That should also keep you far enough away from travelling on school holiday dates if it's the cost of that that's the problem.

pleasecomesoonspring Mon 13-Mar-17 18:26:49

Pretty sure that it won't be £240 a day more like £240 for the entire time.
Or speak up the head about it being an educational trip and you might not get fined at all

MaryPoppinsPenguins Mon 13-Mar-17 18:32:24

How would you feel if you registered them as home schooled and then they couldn't get a place back?

It's too risky... just do it over a holiday or at least a half term to lessen how much you're missing.

I took my girls out for 2.5 weeks and it was a lot. I didn't think it would affect them but it really did... socially, educationally... even with things like smiley faces given out they are way behind their peers now and it's a bit of a confidence killer.

poisonedbypen Mon 13-Mar-17 18:37:23

It us £60 per parent per session, do yes, could be £240/day if they stuck to that. Doubles if not paid with 21 days which could also catch you out if overseas. May sound like scaremongering but but is what they are entitled to do.

4forksake Mon 13-Mar-17 21:37:46

Is there no way all or part of it can't be done in the 6 weeks holidays?

thecraftyfox Mon 13-Mar-17 22:26:19

The fine is not per day. It's per parent per child but covers the whole of the unauthorised absence

In the area I work, a lot of parents return from extended holidays to discover there is no school place, all it would take is 1 kid from a waiting list to be admitted and the their child's place is gone. They then either have to accept the alternative place allocated or appeal. If the class is at 30 for the 6 year old they are very unlikely to have the appeal upheld.

mouldycheesefan Tue 14-Mar-17 14:01:06

@Lowdoorinthewal1 the fine is not per day!!!!!!!

Are you are happy that you risk your school places ? School can't hold them open for you. Can you reduce the risk by including some of the holidsy in a school holidsy? If not, why not?

Floggingmolly Tue 14-Mar-17 14:01:52

They get six weeks holiday in the summer.

prh47bridge Tue 14-Mar-17 21:30:37

The fine is not per day. It's per parent per child but covers the whole of the unauthorised absence

The link you give does not say that. Legally the LA is entitled to fine for each unauthorised absence. Each half day missed is a separate unauthorised absence. In practice most LAs only fine per period of absence or have a maximum number of days per period of absence for which they will fine. But that is the LA's decision. If they want to fine for each day missed (or even each half day missed) they have the legal powers to do so.

GallivantingWildebeest Tue 14-Mar-17 21:34:02

Huh. Dad's middle school had quite a lot of traveller children who were off for months at a time and the local authority had to keep a school place for them, so I think you should be ok!

Sounds like a great trip. Be honest with the HT. Ask what you can do with the DC to keep them in the loop.

GallivantingWildebeest Tue 14-Mar-17 21:34:37

Dd's, not dad's!

hackneyzoo Tue 14-Mar-17 21:35:28

We did this and were away for 5 and a half weeks with our DC. We were up front with the HT and it just went down as unauthorized absence. I think it depends on school and attitude and I think we were really lucky!

prh47bridge Tue 14-Mar-17 22:21:08

Huh. Dad's middle school had quite a lot of traveller children who were off for months at a time and the local authority had to keep a school place for them, so I think you should be ok

Traveller children will be registered at more than one school. There is special provision for them (and other children who have to move a lot due to their parents' occupation) within the regulations. The school does indeed have to keep their place for them. However, other children the place can be removed if they are absent for 20 days or more without authorisation and where the absence is not due to sickness or some other unavoidable cause.

prh47bridge Tue 14-Mar-17 22:22:35

I think it depends on school and attitude and I think we were really lucky

It does and you were. If the school had a waiting list the parents of the child at the head of that list would have had a good case for arguing that your child's place should have been offered to them.

PippaFawcett Tue 14-Mar-17 22:24:12

No advice but it is my dream to go travelling with DH and the DC so keep us posted and have a great time!

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