Penarth parents who want to take their children on holiday in the school term - may now be able to do so for up to 10 days a year

Penarth parents who want to take their children on holiday in the school term,  may now be able to do so for up to 10 days a year

A virtually total ban on taking children out of school for family holidays in term time is set to be softened by the Labour-controlled Vale of Glamorgan Council.

Until now, the Vale Council has advised all school governing bodies “not to authorise any holiday requests during term time, except where there are exceptional and extenuating circumstances. “

Kirsty Williams (Lib Dem Brecon and Radnor)

Kirsty Williams (Lib Dem Brecon and Radnor)

The “exceptional and extenuating circumstances” were defined as  “a family holiday request from parents who are employed by the Ministry of Defence” or “family requests for holiday due to religious beliefs”. Those were the only exceptions which could be considered,

Now however, the Welsh Labour/Liberal Coalition Government’s Education Minister Kirsty Williams is apparently “concerned” that some local authorities have been interpreting its regulations too strictly and is reminding them there should be a “margin of discretion for the school in such matters”.

Committee chairman Cllr Nic Hodges (Plaid Baruc)

Committee chairman Cllr Nic Hodges (Plaid Baruc Ward) is “worried”

As a result the Vale Council ‘cabinet’ is to decide next week whether to issue revised advice to schools.

The change would mean that  parents who want to take their children on holiday during term time, would still have to ask for permission from the school headteacher – but now that permission “might be granted” for an absence up to 10 days.

Schools will still be told to “carefully explore with parents why such a leave of absence was necessary” .

The proposed policy amendment  has been vetted by the council’s  “Learning and Culture Scrutiny Committee”. Its chairman  Cllr Nic Hodges says in an internal report that the revised policy now gives parents “an allowable ten days” – which “worried him”.   He stressed that in his view children should be in school at every possible opportunity.

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  1. Christopher David says:

    We took ours out with permission a week every year to go skiing and miss peak holiday times. We jointly with Scholl planned the weeks miss in order they could catch up on return. The experience was educationally enhancing. Both have an excellent education- oh and can ski to a good standard along with its social benefits. Its about responsibility.

  2. Martin Coffee says:

    The rules were being used to prevent children from attending family funerals and weddings so were obviously not fit for purpose.

    Furthermore political people with their long summer holidays and local government employees with little restrictions on when they take their leave do not understand how difficult it is for some normal people to get leave during school holidays.

    As Anne Shirley would say. “They have no imagination.”

    I’ve long said that Parliament should sit every day outwith Bank and Public holidays with MPs having to take leave like normal people.

  3. AK says:

    And sod the rest of the class who will have to listen again while teacher explains to your spolied brat what they missed and why they don’t understand.

    and repeat for the next spoiled brat.

  4. Christopher David says:

    AK ..what do you mean ?

    • AK says:

      Child A goes on holiday in week 1 and 2
      Teacher teaches remainder of class quadratic equations during week 1 and 2
      Child A returns and asks ‘what’s a quadratic equation’?
      Teacher wastes week 3 explaining to child A what is a quadratic equation, and their lesson plans for week 3 goes out of the window, while the remainder of the class look bored.

      Child B gores on holiday week 4 and 5
      Teacher teaches remainder of the class astro physics
      Child B comes back and asks teacher to explain astro physics
      Teacher wastes week 6 explain astro physics to child B, while the remainder of the class look bored

      and repeat for all other lessons that A and B missed.

      School term time is for school
      School holidays are for holidays

      • Christopher David says:

        Oh well I’m afraid there are two “solutions” (ha serves you right) Yours with all its ignorance and downside or my managed one with all its benefits. I’ve described my solution in operation below. Now- go on try and square it (oh not again) – just to score a point. Lots of green eyes here. Rude jealousy is such a terrible trait in the failed.

  5. Kevin Mahoney says:

    I do have huge sympathies for parents who are stuck with the sky high costs of taking holidays during school holidays.

    However how on earth is a teacher to cope with potentially 25+ children all at different stages of the curriculum as the teacher desperately tries to make up for individuals lost holiday learning?

    I’m sure that it would be a nightmare, and potentially damaging to all the childrens education. Have the teachers union / associations produced any comments or thoughts on this?

    My parents would never have dared to take myself and my brothers out of school for a holiday in term time and we seemed to do OK without the real world educational learning benefits of a 10 day break in Disneyland whilst school was on.

  6. Louise C says:

    1. Letting kids think school is optional isn’t good
    2. Letting kids think they are ‘special’ and ordinary rules don’t apply., also not good
    3. Obvious point about missing classes
    Why do parents pretend that term time holidays are for the kids’ benefit? Selfish, spoilt parents probably breed selfish and spoilt kids. Why is this even an issue?

  7. Christopher David says:

    Oh so judgmental as well as extremely ignorant and downright rude green eyed Louise C. Kevin Mahoney at least has the courtesy to seek professional opinions. I can state categorically neither of my children were brought up to think they were special (as opposed to being encouraged and praised…. when appropriate) or are spoilt. Their experience is far from unique either. I know academics even who took their children out for limited time and type holidays. In fact the reverse was/is true. Both have good degrees and my son is currently in Peru on voluntary service which he, no freebies is paying for out of earnings made from his profession as a graduate engineer. When he comes home he going on to do a Masters in Economic- he will pay for that too by working as he studies. But I can tell you from experience (and as an example) taking the children out a week each year to go on a skiing holiday (when it’s affordable) had great benefits for them both not the least being they can ski and speak several languages- he groundings of which came from ski holidays. My then wife, a professional graduate herself worked a very simple system with Stanwell that meant no extra work for the teachers- just our children. No extra lost holiday leaning involved Kevin. Indeed Stanwell gave its blessing.

  8. Observer says:

    It is clear that your children have done well in the circumstances. If other children in their classes had been taken on term-time holidays by their selfish parents, would it have affected your children, do you think?

  9. Christopher David says:

    No “Observer” (really!) they didn’t and it didn’t, well in a negative way, which I thought I’d made clear. In fact the circumstances benefited them- and others, some who’s parents did indeed take their children out. I did inform you of that (problem reading?) so if anything well yes it did affect them and others, in a very positive manner. However you appear to dense to understand my scribblings. Yes that’s rude but is a small insult compared to our clumsy assertions above. Frankly your just showing gross bias and ignorance. Perhaps a wider education might have benefitted you. So if the circumstance and methodology I describe haven’t answered a question you didn’t need to ask, then there is no solution for you- or very sadly your suffering children/ grandchildren- if you have any.

    • Observer says:

      I’m sure that any objective assessment of the effects on other pupils would have to include opinions from other parents, and not just reiteration of your own unexamined assertions.
      As it is apparent that your children are no longer in secondary education, it would be more appropriate to seek the opinions of those with children currently in school, and also, to learn what teachers think, as this will probably vary according to the nature of the course work.
      My main point is that one parent’s anecdotal opinion does not make the case for a relaxation of the existing rules, and continued insistence on a single example is unconvincing as evidence.

    • Christopher David says:

      No I doubt he did Mr T.

  10. Christopher David says:

    Nope, I think your just making a feeble attempt to recover lost ground. What could be managed a few years ago can be managed now. The better for all. I had the opinions of several other parents at the time thank you. All good and collective, our children are all the better for it. Now- I would agree that parents just taking children out for trivial reasons and not managing the situation are at fault. I’m simply pointing out that taking children out of school for limited periods can actually benefit them at no “cost” to the teaching establishment. I’m far from alone on this and it appears you are the one with nothing more than an rather arrogant and unfounded opinion and it appears no experience to boot. Funnily enough a professor who did the same with his children is coming over to stay with us for a few day from Wednesday. I’ll relate your opinions. We’ll have a chuckle and feel self satisfied over a nice vino :-). Maybe we can plan some nice educational and invigorating trips for the grandchildren.

    • Observer says:

      You still don’t grasp the point. I would like to find out what other people think – not what YOU think other people think. Your comments drown out other opinions and viewpoints, and when you are shown to be wrong, you make personal attacks on any who disagree. Very entertaining for some, but uninstructive for others. I would like to read alternative views, not just your bombastic diatribes.

  11. Christopher David says:

    I really don’t give a damn what you purport to think, you’re obviously challenged in that department and don’t actually make a point. Very amusing though. As for personal attacks I prefer civility, however you sent the first shot. Its below. So add hypocrisy to stupidity and if you cant stand the heat- don’t light the gas in the kitchen. Like a few others here you make rude comments then squeal when countered.

    “It is clear that your children have done well in the circumstances. If other children in their classes had been taken on term-time holidays by their selfish parents, would it have affected your children, do you think?” Rude, patronising and very amateur backhanded stabbing 🙂 x .

  12. Observer says:

    Actually, the ‘first shot’ was your abrupt response to the perfectly valid points made by Louise C, which you regarded as ‘judgmental as well as extremely ignorant and downright rude’. She made pertinent points, and for some reason, you assumed they were directed at you personally, and responded with venom. This tends to stifle any meaningful debate.
    It is fairly clearly that your notion of “civility” only applies as long as no one else offers a different point of view.

  13. Doctor David says:

    “The person who has an opinion about everything leaves no room to think about anything. How can you record when you’re stuck on playback?” (Tomas Meshach)

  14. AK says:

    Never start an argument with an idiot.

    Immediately, they multiply.


  15. Christopher David says:

    Ha- the valid points by Louise C ay! More foundation- less, crass and patronising rudeness from another one of you faceless cowards. And you assume I thought they were aimed at me – as if that even matters. AK is correct, I should have never taken the bait and risen to this collective nonsense. Playing chess with Pidgeon’s syndrome. Hah- but then again….. its been fun.

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