Parents who take kids on holiday during term time will ‘ALL be fined’ under new scheme


PARENTS who take their kids on holiday during term time will be fined thanks to a new government scheme.

The new truancy crackdown will also see offending parents handed a fixed penalty notice (FPN).

The new government scheme could see parents who take kids out of school during term time fined
Education secretary Nadim Zahawi said he wanted to tackle “persistent absence”

FPNs will also be issued to parents whose children are late five times in one term, take five unauthorised absences or are out in public in the five five days of an exclusion.

Parents would face a maximum of two fines for each child per school year. If that limit were reached, prosecution would then be considered.

Councils currently set their own thresholds for when fines are imposed on parents. 

Education Secretary Nadim Zahawi said that he hoped the changes would “help tackle persistent absence”.

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He said: “I know from the Children’s Commissioner’s work on school attendance that children themselves hugely value being in school with their teachers and their friends.

“My job is to make sure that every child can get those school experiences.

“The plans set out today to reform how absence fines operate, alongside our Schools Bill currently going through parliament, will improve consistency across the country and help tackle persistent absence.”

Zahawi will also oversee a Whitehall database with all school registers, according to the plans.

And Children’s Commissioner Rachel de Souza called for school attendance to rise to 100% by this autumn term on the back of the news.

De Souza urged schools to do “whatever it takes” to meet that goal.

The new plans will also tighten rules on pupil absence in the case of illness.

A pupil’s name can be deleted from registers if their health makes it unlikely they can attend school according to current regulations.

The Government claimed this is “outdated given changes to provision for pupils with medical conditions to enable many of them to continue their education in their own school”.

Online learning has also been put forward as a suggestion in the case of absences.

Proposals said that pupils with a child protection plan, education and health care plan or a child in need plan should not be deleted from school rolls without the local council’s consent.

They also suggest pupils younger than compulsory schooling age should still have their absence recorded. 

Their attendance does not need to be recorded by law with the current rules.

The Government added that pupils absent for 15 days or more for health reasons should be reported to the local council to make sure they and their family get more support,

The news comes after one Mum revealed how she managed to save more than £10,000 by taking her kids on holiday during term time.

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The family has been on trips to places such as Egypt, Lanzarote and Mexico together over the years.

But she has run into some complaints, both from other parents – who claim they shouldn’t be missing class – and from some of her kids’ schools.