The Education (Pupil Registration) Regulations 2006 has been amended and came into force from 1st September 2013. The amendments have removed reference to family holiday and extended leave, as well as the statutory threshold of ten school days. (Therefore the previous arrangement whereby schools could grant up to 10 days authorised holiday/absence has now ceased.)
As a result, if an application has been made for leave of absence for the purpose of a holiday, it will not be granted unless deemed to be ‘exceptional circumstances’.
If you wish to seek approval for any request of absence for your child(ren) from School, then you must apply in writing to the Headteacher, at least four weeks in advance of the requested absence. You should only then remove you child(ren) if the absence has been authorised, and notified to you in writing by the School. Any exceptional circumstances must be clearly set out in the written request to the Headteacher who will consider each case upon its merits.
If you then choose to take your child out of school during term time and it is not deemed to be exceptional circumstances and/or has not been approved by the school, then this will be coded as an unauthorised absence and a Fixed Penalty Notice will be issued for the period of absence. Failure to pay a Fixed Penalty may result in further legal action being taken against you.
A Fixed Penalty Notice is a strategy used by schools to address the unacceptable levels of attendance of children at their school under the following legislation:
- Section 7 of the Education Act 1996 places upon parents a duty to ensure that their child receives efficient full-time education either by regular attendance at school or otherwise
- Where a child is a registered pupil at a school and the parent fails to ensure that child’s regular attendance at school the parent is liable to be prosecuted for a criminal offence under Section 444 of the Education Act
- In cases where this duty is not being fulfilled Section 444B of the same Act empowers the Local Authority to issue a Fixed Penalty of either £60.00 or £120.00.
- Section 103 of the Education and Inspections Act 2006 makes it a duty for parents in relation to pupils subject to a fixed period or permanent exclusion to ensure that their child is not present in a public place during school hours, without reasonable justification, during the first five days of any such exclusion. If a child is present in a public place during the first five days of an exclusion during school hours the parent may be guilty of an offence for which they can be prosecuted by the LA before the magistrates’ court or issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice for £60.00 or £120.00.
Please click on the link below to read the Lincolnshire County Council information on the issuing of Fixed Penalty Notices.