Term - Time Leave of Absence
The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006
Amendments to the 2006 regulations remove references to family holiday and extended leave as well as the statutory threshold of ten school days. The amendments make clear that headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. Headteachers should determine the number of school days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted.
The Local Authority has issued the following guidance to schools to help clarify circumstances for authorised absence:
'Examples of Exceptional Circumstances
- Significant family bereavement, i.e. Mother (step), Father (step) principal carer or sibling.
- Significant family illness to Mother (step), Father (step), sibling or principal carer.
- Disclosure of significant abuse where a short leave of absence may be beneficial to recovery.
- Involvement in court proceedings, either in the family courts or in criminal proceedings.
Family requests for holidays for family weddings or to see relatives are not deemed to be exceptional circumstances, the availability of cheap flights or holidays are also not deemed to be exceptional circumstances. The onus is always on the parents to provide evidence to support applications for leave of absence.'
Families, who take children out of school in term time for holidays, may be subject to a legal process undertaken by the Education Welfare Service of the Local Authority, in Borrow Wood Primary School’s case this is Derby City. The 2007 Regulations set out the procedures for issuing penalty notices (fines) to each parent who fails to ensure their children’s regular attendance at school or fails to ensure that their excluded child is not in a public place during the first five days of exclusion.
Should you decide to take your child out of school for a holiday we still require you to complete an Application for Leave of Absence Form, which is available as a download on this page. You can then either email the form to firstname.lastname@example.org or drop it in to the school office.
The Education (Penalty Notices) (England) Regulations 2007
Amendments have been made to the 2007 Regulations in the Education (Penalty Notices) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013. These amendments, as described below, came into force on 1st September 2013.
Amendments to 2007 regulations will reduce the timescales for paying a penalty notice. Parents must, from 1 September 2013, pay £60 within 21 days or £120 within 28 days. This brings attendance penalty notices into line with other types of penalty notices and allows local authorities to act faster on prosecutions.
You can also download a copy of Derby City Council's Advice to Parents and Carers about Penalty Notices, which gives further information about Penalty Notices.
If you want to find out more about the legal changes please click on the link below to access information from the Department for Education website.