If your child is not going to be in school for any reason, please telephone the School Office on 01749 850375 to let us know, preferably by 9:30am. You can leave a message on the Office answerphone, prior to school hours, if need be. Alternatively, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know.
If we do not hear from you and are unable to contact you by phone to verify the reason for your child missing school, their absence will be recorded as unauthorised.
Term-time Leave Advice issued by Somerset County Council
Headteachers can only grant leave of absence during term time for exceptional circumstances. Any request for leave must be made in writing for the attention of the Headteacher in advance. There is no formal definition offered for exceptional leave at present by the Department for Education. However, from discussion with the DfE and concerned professional associations it is suggested that exceptional leave may include:
- Forces staff returning from lengthy active service abroad,
- Police, Fire Service staff being told when they can or cannot take leave,
- If a close family member has a terminal illness and it may be a last chance to be together especially if the family member lived overseas,
- Parents having to work abroad for a fixed, minimum term period
Somerset County Council supports schools:
- In expecting parents and carers to make sure that children and young people attend school regularly. Any absence from school will impact on educational achievement, success in later life and longer term health and well being.
- In ensuring the law is upheld. Parents and carers are committing an offence if they fail to ensure the regular and punctual attendance at school of their child. Schools must explain their stance on term time leave in their attendance policy so parents/carers are clear on expectations and potential consequences, such as any unauthorised absence including taking term time leave not agreed with the school, can result in a Penalty Notice being issued to each parent for each child. Any Penalty Notice unpaid is taken to Magistrates Court as failure to secure the regular attendance of their child. If found guilty of such an offence, they might receive a criminal conviction and a potential fine of up to £1,000.
SCC cannot override a school’s decision not to authorise any term time leave. There is no right of appeal.
Taking a child on holiday in term time interrupts the learning of the whole class. Teachers have to spend time helping children catch up when they return. Parents should arrange holidays for the 13 week school holiday periods. Schools are open 190 days which leaves 175 days of the year for a holiday.