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Can academies exclude for unauthorised attendance of a sibling?

(17 Posts)
StarlightMcKenzie Wed 07-Nov-12 15:50:29

Our new area has schools with scary headteachers who don't authorise absences for any reason.

Our children's half terms don't coincide and even when they do it is better for the family to attend things that are usually busy, in term time.

I've seen statistics that show that attainment is linked to attendance, and know it is important (although I wouldn't argue that attainment is necessarily linked to hours spent in front of a teacher, but linked to the values and discipline of the families who have children who have good attendance rates, though I know most teachers prefer to disagree), and attendance has been and always will be excellent for my children, - with the exception of the few times (up to 10 days a year) that I would like to pull them out for other things.

Does anyone know if my children be asked to leave an academy for this reason?

StarlightMcKenzie Wed 07-Nov-12 16:21:30

Sorry, - thread title made absolutely no sense.

finefatmama Thu 08-Nov-12 23:48:04

I am not aware of any powers given to academies by the secretary of state to make your dc leave but they can certainly ask that you find another school. They are more likely to meet with you, do the scary routine and impose a fine.

mymatemax Thu 08-Nov-12 23:54:32

our acadeny takes a much more common sense approach to authorising days off. our local LEA primary has to follow the LEA process & policy so i guess it depends on the academy head.
It isnt in anybodys interest to ask you to leave surely?

mariammma Fri 09-Nov-12 01:34:07

Star, do you mean dd1 needs time off school occasionally, as otherwise she and ds will never get any fun time together/ she'll never get a mummy-to-myself day? And that her needs as a young carer are to be able to access normal activities that (with asd in the family) simply cant happen on weekends/ hols.

Cos if so, just get a professional to write saying it's essential, and hey presto, authorised absence. Also, regular dental and optician appointments are essential. Any necessary early afternoon pickups (after pm registration) and occasional lates just before lunch won't affect 'attendance' stats.

Plus if they exclude dd1 on young carer/brother with asd, grounds that's 'associative discrimination' under the equalities act. And it would trigger their involvement in a time-consuming and futile CAF to see how they can better meet her needs. So you'll probably manage to persade them wink

StarlightMcKenzie Fri 09-Nov-12 09:04:29

Thanks Maria, that is really helpful. At least it has given me some ideas.

Professional endorsement of what we want to do will be a problem though. I have disengaged from pretty much everyone - or rather not engaged in the first place in our new LA (ds gets his provision at an independent school now). We have no professionals involved with us. The baby's HV is trying to win my trust but I doubt she'd be writing notes and dd will be over 5 for most of her school time.

We don't even have a paed. The last one in the last LA didn't want to see us again either although didn't actually discharge us.

StarlightMcKenzie Fri 09-Nov-12 09:06:35

Perhaps I could contact the EWO in writing in advance though, to explain what I want to do and why. That way it can't be threatened, and it looks like I have been responsible rather than gung ho overriding the HT to take the pee.

mariammma Fri 09-Nov-12 16:31:20

These may know who to approach?

mariammma Fri 09-Nov-12 16:43:24

You just need someone professional with common sense to tell you what you know already, ie that for dd1 to thrive she needs a bit of extra attention and fun, and exposure to 'normal' life. And to write it in a letter, red book, whatever, so you can then say you're following their advice. Doesn't matter who, GP, HV, school nurse, tier 2 Camhs triage, duty SW, family support worker at children's centre... Just find someone with common sense and a low tolerance for office politics. There are lots of them around in mainstream public setvices, they just get systematically driven out of asd and sen provision.

StarlightMcKenzie Fri 09-Nov-12 17:02:49

Thank you maria, I'll look into the link you gave. I've been trying to stay away from, well, everyone really.

I started out with baby ds, doing the HV thing and bfing cafes etc. and then I got annoyed at the level of interest and forms shoved my way and courtesy phone calls and referrals for 'support' whilst totally ignoring the things I WAS asking for some help with and I just though 'oh here we go again' and ended it, refusing to fill in forms, consent to referrals or sign up to anything.

So I don't really know what, if anything there is in my new area, or have a relationship with any professionals who might be sympathetic. I guess I'll have to re-engage though as I probably can't have it all my own way.

mariammma Fri 09-Nov-12 17:15:22

Think contacting EWO is disproportionate! A MS headteacher getting fed up of posh parents going skiing in termtime is really not the same as a LA terrified of opening ABA floodgates wink

mariammma Fri 09-Nov-12 17:17:01

GPs seem quite fed up with pointless politics at the mo...

StarlightMcKenzie Fri 09-Nov-12 17:53:43

You're probably right. Even our solicitor was shocked at action I wanted to take wrt a letter from our current LA basically indicating a willingness to settle (but not actually settling until reasonable questions had been answered). I promise you it was all totally necessary with last LA though.

finefatmama Fri 09-Nov-12 23:26:56

forgot to mention that the fine is worst case scenario and is usually preceded by warning letters. I dont think academies have to use the local authority EWO. they can decide to threaten and bypass EWO completely.

We got a warning letter from ds2's school for a few late episodes telling us that we could end up with a £50 fine and I thought of sending them a cheque in advance to save time. Now we book 10 am appointments with professionals and take the rest of the day off.

Shayo Sat 10-Nov-12 08:23:51

They need to check up on attendance due to child protection issues and ofsted.Schools hate the fact that ,children are taken out for holidays before
Official school breaks forgetting how expensive holidays can be during this time.so half the school is empty a week to two weeks before official breaks and it did not look good on the school attendance record which ofsted demand.my friend said to be honest she's a teacher they the staff loved it as they could spend more individual time with the children left in school and they felt the parents were smart not having to pay sky rocket fares for holidays during the official breaks and it was a life learning experience for the children on the holiday.i personally would only inform the school of my intentions if the head is sympathetic if not i wouldn't.
They can never remove your child for non attendance 10 to 20 days .but they will question why the child has not been in and rightly so.
I know cause took my children to Disney some years back we spent 4weeks best time of our lives . I had a game plan lied on it being a family emergency back home which worked well ,till my teenage son and daughter took pictures of holiday in and I was hauled into the principles offices ....

StarlightMcKenzie Sat 10-Nov-12 11:07:17

'I had a game plan lied on it being a family emergency back home which worked well ,till my teenage son and daughter took pictures of holiday in and I was hauled into the principles offices ....'

Lol what happened?

Shayo Sat 10-Nov-12 18:15:46

Yeah to my shame ,I must say I was shitting in my pants.i was told that I had brought the form to a dispute so to say cos all the other children were MAD that they couldn't go on holidays during school time.Well considering we have a timeshare what else could I do! Anyway lied that the emergency had gotten worse as there was A Govt take over as in a coup,we had to change planes and the airline would not refund but exchanged,to Florida we took it as I did not want to lose our money but we could not go to my country with the state of alert...obviously the head doesn't go on to CNN.and fell for it hook line and sinker.No one can play a player like a player one all I thought as I left that office.when my little one improves I'm doing it again ......

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