Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 70 total)
  • Taking kids out of school
  • Premier Icon pat12
    Free Member

    Got a chance to go on a great free(ish) holiday but would mean taking my daughter (year 1) out of school for 3 days.

    Never done this before, what happens?

    Assume if i ask the Head he will say no?

    Probably not worth concocting some clever excuse i guess.

    Premier Icon boxelder
    Full Member

    At worst it will go down as an unauthorised absence. You’d have to do it regularly before it triggered any action. You could lie and say she’s ill, but I would just be honest and explain what’s happening. It’s not like you won’t be able to ‘bridge the learning gap’ in Year 1. Get her to make a holiday diary, collect stuff to stick in, picture a day etc, learn some foreign vocabulary.

    Premier Icon dc1988
    Full Member

    Lying is pointless as children can’t keep it up, as above if there is some learning involved then it probably won’t be looked at so unfavourably

    Premier Icon onehundredthidiot
    Free Member

    Please absolutely do something mind expanding while away.
    Don’t get back and ask for catch up work. (It’ll not be needed at that age and it’ll cause a bit of a teacher meltdown)

    Premier Icon pat12
    Free Member

    Great thanks! Do you think its worth asking the head before on the off chance?

    What i don’t want to do is ask then he says no and i do it anyway.

    Premier Icon onehundredthidiot
    Free Member

    I’d ask 3 days isn’t going to break the bank.

    Premier Icon Rich_s
    Full Member

    A few years back I went to see the head to ask permission for a couple of days off for a lapland trip. I said “we’re going, how best do you want me to explain it to the school?”

    She told me to ask for permission and she’d decline it, but I think that helped the school’s absence stats.

    She also told us to have a great trip 😁

    FWIW, some families in school massively take the piss and have kids out more than once per term for more than a week at a time. You’re doing the right thing if you’re worried about it, but there’s no real need to. Year 1 is pretty low level stuff.

    Premier Icon donkeysled
    Full Member

    Definitely ask. Don’t be the ones that constantly go away and pretend they are ill.
    Be a good person and be honest.
    Honest people never get anywhere but have a conscience.

    Premier Icon woody2000
    Full Member

    Just do it. You’ll have to notify school anyway, so either ask and they can say no or just tell them what you’re doing. Enjoy 🙂

    Premier Icon pat12
    Free Member

    Thanks again feel much less worried about doing it now.

    Premier Icon pondo
    Full Member

    Or… You could just not go on the holiday. 🙂

    Premier Icon ratherbeintobago
    Full Member

    You could, but if it’s a one-off, and especially a one off in Y1 there’s no harm in it.

    DOI haven’t ever done this, but at Easter due to school giving out the wrong holiday dates are away for the last week of term.

    Premier Icon woodlikesbikes
    Full Member

    We’ve done it twice. Once for a two week holiday, and once for a day. Both times we just told the head what we were doing. No issues.

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Full Member

    Done it twice. Once for a week in California – we were considering emigrating and I was out there for interviews already. And once for the last landing of Concorde at Heathrow. Educational visit to something he still remembers today. The Primary school was fine for both when the reasons were given. Now he’s at Uni, they couldn’t care if he turns up. Unlike the funder of his course (me).

    Premier Icon mjsmke
    Free Member

    Just don’t expect the teacher to catch her up.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Full Member

    Just don’t expect the teacher to catch her up.

    I don’t think the teacher is invited.

    Premier Icon dc1988
    Full Member

    Is the plan to ask for permission or would you go on the holiday whatever the response? Might be best to inform the school but not actually ask permission in case they refuse and then you look like a dick for going anyway.

    Premier Icon pat12
    Free Member

    yea thats what i was thinking why ask if i’m doing it anyway

    Reading the LEA can skip the fine and go straight to a proscution but i doubt that would happen if she has had a 100% attendance record before??

    Premier Icon Jakester
    Free Member

    We’ve done it on a couple of occasions in the past and simply notified the school.

    They said they couldn’t approve it but nothing further occurred. I got the impression that provided attendance was otherwise ‘normal’ it was tacitly accepted.

    Premier Icon boxelder
    Full Member

    Reading the LEA can skip the fine and go straight to a proscution but i doubt that would happen if she has had a 100% attendance record before??

    They won’t even blink. You’d need to miss weeks, or regularly miss days every week before it would go anywhere. As a guide (ex teacher and now governor) if attendance is above 95%, it’s not even questioned.
    Tell them you are going and why it’s important to your family that you do go, and outline what educational opportunities will be provided – “We’ll keep reading with them and do numeracy work etc, etc”
    Don’t make a habit of it – teachers and schools at taken to task over attendance issues and are accountable to governors and LEAs/Academy bosses/OfSted

    Premier Icon reeksy
    Full Member

    We do this every year for a minimum of a week, and always have done. We tell the school. Politely. Both kids are in the year above their age level anyway and always get good reports. They probably learn more on holiday anyway.
    That said the school they’ve been at the last year or so is somewhat unconventional.

    Premier Icon pondo
    Full Member

    They probably learn more on holiday anyway.

    How old are they? What do you get up to?

    Premier Icon scuttler
    Full Member

    The wording in the (standard) letter from the school will make you feel like a crim but it’s all theatrics to make sure you understand it’s not the done thing.

    It will go down as unauthorised for stats purposes but until you hit a threshold it means nothing.

    Premier Icon reeksy
    Full Member

    8 and 10 now, when they were younger we’d take activity books with us or homeschool-style books. They both love reading and because we spend our time in the countryside we’re surrounded by learning opportunities. We have field guides and the inaturalist app. They can already correct me on spider identification, etc.

    Premier Icon richpips
    Free Member

    I took my son out of school loads for various cycling trips and did get called in once by the education authority for not being a responsible parent with regard to his education. I guess they are just following their rules.

    Currently deciding which Oxford college to apply to next year.

    Premier Icon MoreCashThanDash
    Full Member

    Currently deciding which Oxford college to apply to next year.

    If he’d spent more time in education you could have been looking at Cambridge 😎

    Premier Icon tomd
    Full Member

    Personally we’ve tried to avoid it with our kids but I think there has been a day where we were doing some sort of family thing post covid lockdown. My view of it is:

    – Taking kids out of school for one or 2 weeks a year because you “need” a holiday you basically can’t afford? Not cool – get a tent and join the rest of us.
    – Taking kids out of school for 1 off or exceptional events – maybe

    Premier Icon intheborders
    Free Member

    What happens next year, or the year after etc when there’s another ” great free(ish) holiday” – at what point will you stop?

    Premier Icon prettygreenparrot
    Full Member

    What Rich_s said.

    We took ours out for a few days a couple of times. Discussed with the head. Unauthorised absences both times.

    One time was to visit Tanzania to visit the various places my in-laws have been assisting with aid. Took over a whole bunch of materials the schoolchildren had collected: pens, modelling clay, etc.

    Can’t recall the other time but it might have been to visit relatives in the USA.

    Premier Icon dannybgoode
    Full Member

    We did with the boy. In Sheffield though any such absence is an automatic fine and it is per parent per child (ie me and Mrs D both got fined).

    We just priced it in to the holiday. You could pull a sickie but kids are useless at keeping their mouths shut.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    We’ve missed a few days at the end of term a couple of times.

    They could have been in school doing quizes or watching DVD’s. Or they could have been canoeing a river in Southern France…..

    It’s not a decision to take lightly, and there is a hefty dose of selfishness around me valuing our canoeing (or biking, etc) over school, but that’s the parenting decision we take.

    Premier Icon MoreCashThanDash
    Full Member

    – Taking kids out of school for one or 2 weeks a year because you “need” a holiday you basically can’t afford? Not cool – get a tent and join the rest of us.
    – Taking kids out of school for 1 off or exceptional events – maybe

    Seeing as the conversation has reached this point, that’s our view as well. Different if you’re visiting an aid project in Tanzania or some of richpips travels, rather than sitting on a beach or dumping them in a kids club, and also accepting that their attendance or attainment also need to be considered.

    Sadly, as too many parents took the piss and made it harder for head teachers to be pragmatic, stupid rules are required to cater for the lowest common denominator

    Ours have only had weeks off school to attend sporting or musical activities, which the schools authorised anyway. Need to get our application in for LittleMissMC to go to Eurogym in July.

    I’m not sure how “we must have something we can’t afford” became a socially acceptable example to set children, but that’s my old fashioned view and it doesn’t seem to be doing any harm to wider society.

    Premier Icon mahalo
    Full Member

    wouldnt worry me. not as if they havent already missed a year of proper schooling.

    we take ours out for a week every year for the ski holiday, no way were doing that at HT. we have been fined once. The school itself has always been understanding though.

    Premier Icon thegeneralist
    Full Member

    How old is the kid?
    If sub 5 then no problem.

    PS, in the unlikely event you want more ( like 200 pages) up to date info then head over to Snowheads. It’s full of this question

    Premier Icon stevextc
    Free Member

    It totally depends on YOUR KIDS school and Education authority.
    My kids primary sent a email with unauthorised absence threats with every single communication. (and I mean every one, including summer fete, out of hours clubs etc.)

    I asked for permission for my father’s funeral and got told what amounted to “we won’t tell you until after the funeral” along with a threat letter. This was complex for us as his Mum taught at the same school or I’d have just taken him anyway and a see you in court email.

    On the other side my mate took his kids out of yrs 3 and 5 (different school/education authority) for a YEAR and had no problems.

    So I’d say if the school are obsessed with sending threatening letters and emails I’d just do and inform them, pay the fine or go to court if you feel strongly. If they are reasonable you can maybe ask first.

    Premier Icon wwpaddler
    Free Member

    Your daughter is in year 1. She will not miss out or end up behind by missing 3 days of school. Don’t take any schoolwork away with you. Keep school and home/family/holiday separate. The most academic thing she should do is write a postcard to Granny.

    Just write to school and say daughter won’t be in school on those dates. I wouldn’t even give a reason. If the school want one make them ask for it.

    You’ll receive a grumpy letter to file in the recycling.

    Premier Icon DickBarton
    Full Member

    Suppose it depends on what is deciding it is is ‘great’ holiday – is it great due to it being cheap? Or is it great as you won’t be able to do it ever again?

    I’m going to come across as wrong, but if it is ‘great’ due to a cheap price then I’d be giving it a miss, but then I’m definitely of the opinion that kids shouldn’t be missing school. Many will disagree with that thinking but I’m not too bothered about that.

    If it is ‘great’ because it is unique and unlikely to happen again and will provide some learning/enrichment then I’d be more tempted to get it done.

    A holiday to sit by a pool really isn’t worth it in my view (but then I also don’t consider that a holiday, more a prison sentence!).

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    Year 1? I wouldn’t, she’ll never be able to catch up with her crayoning again.

    Premier Icon ifra
    Free Member

    For a child in year one I don’t think they are going to fall too far behind with just 3 days out, I would ask and then go anyway. I took mine out for 2.5 weeks back in 2019 for a long trip and I don’t think they have fallen behind at all only got a fine for the eldest in secondary because his attendance was below 95%, even with me home schooling them for 3months last years they seem to be doing ok 🤣.

    Premier Icon ransos
    Free Member

    It’s an unauthorised absence. I’d just be honest with the school and pay the fine without complaining in the unlikely event that you receive one.

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