The Department for Education (DfE) has announced important amendments to legislation surrounding holidays in term time.
From the 1st September 2013, the new law gives no entitlement to parents to take their child on holiday during term time. Any application for leave must only be in exceptional circumstances and the Head Teacher must be satisfied that the circumstances are exceptional and warrant the granting of leave. Headteachers would not be expected to class any term time holiday as exceptional. Parents can be fined by the Local Authority for taking their child on holiday during term time without consent from school.
In the academic year 2011 to 2012, 9.7% of all absences in England were due to parents taking their children out of school during term time. This high level of absence has led the DfE to make this important change to legislation.
As a Local Authority, we fully appreciate the financial difficulties that some parents face when booking holidays, particularly during school holidays. However, we are expecting that all schools in Tameside introduce firm policies and stringent checks to ensure that there is a significant reduction in the number of absences being authorised by school during term time.
I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Local Authority and your child’s school to thank you for your full support in this matter by not taking your child out of school during term time.
This new legislation will bring about increased attendance and improved standards in Tameside schools.
Further information can be obtained from www.dfe.gov.uk.
Head of Education Service
Communities, Children’s, Adults & Health