Holidays During Term Time

In Torfaen holidays in term time are only authorised if an application is made to the Head Teacher as parents do not have an automatic right to withdraw pupils from school for a holiday during term time.

Head Teacher’s have a discretionary power to authorise leave for a family holiday during term time except for ‘exceptional circumstances’, no more than 10 days’ leave should be granted for this purpose.

If your child fails to return to school within 10 days of the end of the extended leave of absence, they may be removed from the school roll, if both the school and LA fail to locate them and they do not have a good reason to be absent.

Your child’s education does suffer if they do not attend school. It is worth noting that a pupil who takes 10 days holiday (authorised or not) in an academic year will only attain 94.7% attendance. A pupil who takes 10 days holiday during the period of September – May (the annual Assembly Government absence survey time period) will only attain 93.8%. We ask that you avoid going on holiday during term time if possible.

However if you make an application to the Head Teacher the decision to authorise absences is at the Head Teachers discretion based on their assessment of the situation. An individual’s circumstances will be considered on a case by case basis. The following will be considered but not limited to:

  1. The time of year, length and purpose of the holiday, impact on continuity of learning, timing of exams or tests, circumstances of the family and the wishes of the parents as well as the overall attendance and attainment of the child. Whether an event can reasonably be scheduled outside of term time then it would not be normal to authorise the absence.
  2. Absences to visit family members are not normally granted during term time if they could be scheduled for holiday periods or outside school hours. Children may however need time to visit seriously ill relatives.
  3. Absences for important religious observances are often taken into account but only for the ceremony and travelling time, not extended leave. This is intended for one off situations rather than regular or recurring events.
  4. We will take the needs of the families of service personnel into account if they are returning from long operation tours that prevent contact during scheduled holiday time.
  5. We will take the needs of the parents with restricted access to holiday times such as shut down, where they do not have a choice to take holidays during the school holiday period. In these circumstances we will request confirmation in writing from the employer.
  6. We will make reasonable adjustments for students with special educational needs or disabilities.
  7. We will take into account the fact that families may need time together to recover from trauma or crisis.

Any examples provided are illustrative rather than exhaustive.

Please remember good school attendance is key to helping your child have the best possible start in life and to maximise their potential both in terms of academic achievement and future employability.

School Term and Holiday Dates are available here.

Last Modified: 02/03/2016
For more information contact:

Inclusion Service

Tel: 01495 766965

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