Requests for absence during term time
As from the 1st September 2013, all schools are unable to authorise any requests for absence relating to holidays in term time. This has been brought about by an amendment to the Education (Pupil Registration)(England) Regulations 2006 which has removed reference to holidays and the ten day period.
These changes reinforce the government’s view that every minute of every school day is vital and that pupils should only be granted authorised absence by the school, in exceptional circumstances e.g. illness, exclusions, or due to other unavoidable causes. This view has recently been reinforced by Ofsted who in a recently published report on a Devon school reported, "Pupils clearly enjoy being at school. However, overall attendance is no better than average and this is in part due to some pupils being taken out of school for holidays during term time by their parents, in spite of the fact that the school has a clear and published policy that makes it clear that such absence is unauthorised. This absence has an impact on pupils’ achievement. As a result, the overall judgement for behaviour and safety is good rather than outstanding”.
We would remind parents that unauthorised absences may well result in the instigation of parental responsibility measures which could be a penalty notice, or a fine of up to £2,500 and/or a term of imprisonment of up to 3 months. We hope you will support your child’s school by ensuring that your son/daughter obtains the maximum benefit from their time at school by attending punctually for the 190 days each year that the law requires, unless prevented from doing so by an unavoidable circumstances.
To read the full letter from DCC
To download a copy of the Absence request form