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Feb holiday in half term before GCSES?

26 replies

kkkrose · 08/05/2022 09:19

Im thinking of taking my daughter on holiday in the Feb half term before GCSES. Im thinking of the Caribbean as a treat for her 16th birthday.

Im a little worried as the only flight back from the island I am looking at doesnt return until the monday morning that school starts after half term so she will be able to get to school for lunch time on the Monday but will no doubt be a little tired as the time difference is 4 hours. we are flying Club though (I have lots of airmails so can upgrade us both ) so she will be able to sleep on the night flight home.

Is this unfair on her? she thinks its ok and wants a break after mocks. Shes a very hard worker and works consistently. She will take work with her to do whilst we are there.



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fUNNYfACE36 · 08/05/2022 10:22

When is her first exam? Surely not til april or so?

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BungleandGeorge · 08/05/2022 10:34

They’re usually set a lot of work in that half term and many schools have extra sessions in the holidays. Does she not have more mocks in March? Honestly I’d go after exams when she can relax and enjoy it..

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Bimster · 08/05/2022 10:38

DS had mocks after half term. Either way, she’ll have work to do. I’d do it another time.

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DownTownAbbey2 · 08/05/2022 10:41

She’ll need all of Monday off, an afternoon at school would be really hard to do after the night flight.

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Comefromaway · 08/05/2022 10:44

i took mine on holiday during Feb Half term of GCSE year but we only went away in the UK.

Those flights won’t work for her. Can you not go somewhere slightly more accessible and save the Caribbean for another time.

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maddy68 · 08/05/2022 10:48

I'm my school some exams have already started the orals and practical subjects it's too risky without speaking to the exams officer first

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MermaidEyes · 08/05/2022 10:48

Our school don't do holiday lessons until Easter, but they're still expected to do plenty of revision in February ready for the second lot of mocks in March. Could you not manage October half term this year, or alternatively leave until the following February when presumably she will be at sixth form or college and it will be easier.

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PMAmostofthetime · 08/05/2022 10:48

I think it will be fine- she has plenty of time before exams but I would let her miss the Monday and return on the Tuesday fresh and relaxed it will probably do her the world of good to forget about exam stress for a while and enjoy her birthday. 1
Day off is not going to impact her a lot of she has a good attendance record. She can always do any homework on the flight there and back.

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Clymene · 08/05/2022 10:51

I'd go after the exams. That's what we're doing. And it's term time too so will be cheaper.

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Flopping · 08/05/2022 10:51

We took our DD away for ten days at Easter, it was exactly what she needed. She decompressed, as did we, and has renewed energy for her exams.

We consulted school before booking and they agreed that it would do her more good than harm.

Do it!

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Hollyhead · 08/05/2022 11:00

I’d go - it’s not healthy to work so intensively, and she could take some books etc with her. I don’t remember anyone taking GCSEs even half as seriously in the late 90s and I was too set A/A* for everything.

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MermaidEyes · 08/05/2022 11:01

Flopping · 08/05/2022 10:51

We took our DD away for ten days at Easter, it was exactly what she needed. She decompressed, as did we, and has renewed energy for her exams.

We consulted school before booking and they agreed that it would do her more good than harm.

Do it!

That's lucky, some schools take a dim view of going away during Easter holidays, ours expect kids to attend extra lessons over Easter.

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TheHomeEdit · 08/05/2022 11:17

I think it really depends on the timetable for each school. For example my dc the GCSE mocks are always directly after Christmas holidays and February half term is the time to take a break. With A levels mocks are after February half term so not a good time to be away.

In fact I think I remember getting emails from the head saying prioritise a true break in February before GCSEs as this will be your last chance for a while.

School also never has catch up lessons in holidays and only ever has a single set of mocks. The idea of multiple mock exams has always seemed quite odd to me when children at other schools talk about it. My dc school prioritise teaching / revision time, but clearly other schools are different.

I'm not so sure about landing Monday morning. We have done transatlantic flights landing the day before school starts, but generally when it’s only a 2 day week. But you have less of a time difference and should get better sleep if in business class. Is your dd used to time zone shifts? Some cope much better than others.

Really I think you need to talk to the school and your dd, to see how sensible this is, and whether she would enjoy a break then or fret about missing work.

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underneaththeash · 08/05/2022 14:08

Yes, that will be fine. School won’t authorise it though.

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BungleandGeorge · 08/05/2022 15:43

@TheHomeEdit things have changed for the children caught up In the pandemic! Many have missed far too much and done no practice exams and it’s far more common to have catch up and 2 sets of mocks..

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mumonthehill · 08/05/2022 15:47

I would take her. She may have mocks but if she works in the weeks before half term she should be fine. If you make the exam stuff last too long before Easter they can go off the boil. It will be full on from Easter, ds in most days this Easter for revision. They need time out as well.

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Watapalava · 08/05/2022 15:48

I would

ds is doing gcses in two weeks and we still went away for week at feb half term and easter as dis all their mates

extra sessions are all before and after school - never during holidays as school expects them to have a full switch off

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Fixyourself · 08/05/2022 15:50

Do it. Sounds like a great experience for your while family. A week away from revision won’t hurt and will probably do her some good!

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Playplayaway · 08/05/2022 16:28

Alhough it sounds fine and one day off isn't going to harm her education, it's a long old way to go for a one week holiday. If you wait until the exams are over you could go for longer. We've always taken ours in the period after GCSE's in early July. It's quieter than school hols and they fully relax knowing it's all over.

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123sunshine · 08/05/2022 17:42

Take her and enjoy the holiday. At my daughters school they are running a school ski trip in feb half term which she is going on along with many of her friends, it is also her GCSE year. It will be great to get away and relax and rejuvenate before hard work of exam study.

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TizerorFizz · 08/05/2022 18:52

@kkkrose
Why not look at Saturday to Saturday? Monday arrival back isn’t great. I know this will be cheaper but she won’t recover. Where is only 4 hours time difference in the Caribbean? I thought it was more like 7 hours? You could try South Africa. Virtually no time difference. Great in Feb.

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EileenGC · 08/05/2022 19:46

My concern would be the flight frequency. If there’s no flight on the Saturday night, is there one on Monday? What happens if your flight is cancelled - would it be 2/3 days until the next one? Or how well connected is the local airport to other hubs (perhaps US?) to which you could connect in an emergency?

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MarvelMrs · 08/05/2022 19:49

Your DD’s exams will be over by the end of June possibly mid June depending on her subjects. It would be far better to take her as a relaxing treat as soon as they have finished. She would enjoy it more too with no exams looming in her mind.

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lop32 · 08/05/2022 19:58

I'd take her. We went skiing in early Easter and my son has A levels. We'd intended to go at Christmas but he got covid. I'm usually the last person to jeopardise revision but the break did him the world of good.

The challenge with going to the Caribbean in the summer holidays is that it's hurricane season. That doesn't mean you won't be fine but it's a risk. July & August aren't good times to visit everywhere, although there's plenty of nice options in the US and Europe.

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TizerorFizz · 08/05/2022 21:21

Loads of people go away in Feb half term of an exam year. Fewer at Easter. It’s the last holiday before exams and not so many work in the Feb half term. We’ve done remote islands and didn’t fly via USA. We went via Antigua or Barbados. I would at least choose a main island. Although the allure of the BVIs and Grenadines is strong!

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