School terms and holidays
Leave of Absence during Term-Time - Attendance Policy Statement
Taking students out of school for holidays and other events during term-time can have an adverse effect on a child’s educational well-being and can lead to sanctions being taken against parents where a holiday or other event has not been authorised by the school prior to its commencement.
Legislation makes it clear that Headteachers’ cannot authorise any holiday or other event during term-time unless under exceptional circumstances. Holidays and other events not authorised under these guidelines will be classed as unauthorised absences and will result in a Penalty Notice (FPN) fine being issued to parents by the Court Officer when absences meet the thresholds stated in this policy.
Where a parent feels that they have extenuating and exceptional circumstances for taking their child on holiday for any period during term-time they should seek authority from the Headteacher in writing giving more than 10 school days (2 full weeks) notice where possible and also to arrange a meeting with a member of the schools Senior Leadership Team (SLT).
For any request for Leave of absence during term time, a meeting between parents/carers and a member of the schools Senior Leadership Team needs to be made to discuss the request. There is no automatic right in law to take a child out of school for family holidays or other events.
The law says that parents do not have the right to take their child out of school for holidays during term time.
Unauthorised absence of a school-aged child is a criminal offence for any adult with parental responsibility (Section 4 of the 1996 Education Act). Parents can risk going before the Magistrates Court and the result could lead to a large fine and/or one of a range of Orders available at the Court.
The Local Authority policy is that schools may issue a fixed penalty notice for unauthorised absences.
The school will only authorise term time absence for exceptional circumstances.
If Whitworth Community High School refuses your request for holiday absence and your child is still taken out of school, the absence will be recorded as unauthorised and noted on your child’s records.
We know it is often expensive to take a holiday during school breaks and that is why some parents may ask for term time leave for their child.
Please consider carefully the implications of taking your child out of school during term time: