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Here you’ll find details regarding leave of absence during term time along with legal guidelines and an application form

Legal Guidance for parents

It is essential for children to be in school regularly to benefit fully from their educational opportunities. Good attendance helps ensure that children make the academic progress of which they are capable and it plays a vital part in a child’s social development.  We use Birmingham Local Authority’s Fast Track Procedure to manage cases where attendance is of concern.

The importance of school attendance is such that the law was changed in 2013 and headteachers may only grant leave in term time where the circumstances are exceptional. This is in line with Birmingham Local Authority’s ‘Leave in Term Time Guidance’ and the 2013 Amendment to the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations. Some examples of circumstances where leave may be granted are as follows:

  • death of parent/carer or sibling of the pupil
  • life threatening or critical illness of parent or sibling of the pupil
  • parent/carer recuperation and convalescence from critical illness or surgery (leave request to be made within 6 months of recovery and medical evidence required)

Family emergencies need careful consideration. It is not always in the best interest of the child to miss school for family emergencies that are being dealt with by adult family members. Being at school, close to their friends and receiving support from staff can provide children with stability and care during the most difficult times. The routine of school provides a reassuring, safe and familiar background during times of uncertainty.

If you have exceptional circumstances which lead you to request leave in term time for your child, please complete the required form which you can obtain from School. The headteacher will then make a decision on whether or not the leave can be lawfully authorised and will do so only if there is a genuine, exceptional and urgent reason for a child to be absent during term time.

The school’s Attendance Policy does provide for authorised absence where the observance of religious festivals falls within term time. Requests for leave of this type are made via a specific form which can be accessed via the following link.

If a child is taken out of school without the headteacher’s authorisation, it will be recorded as unauthorised absence. This may lead to the issuing of a penalty notice and legal action being taken.

From time to time sickness bugs do travel through the school. If your child contracts one of these, our policy is that the child must not return to school unless they have been symptom free for 48 hours. This is in line with NHS England advice.

Section 23(1) Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2007:

Penalty notices may be issued to the parent of pupils who have unauthorised absence from school. The amount of the penalty is £60.

  • If this is not paid within 21 days the amount rises to £120.
  • If not paid within 28 days the Local Authority will prosecute under section 444(1) unless it comes to our attention that the penalty notice had been issued in error.

Section 444(1) Education Act 1996:

“If you are the parent of a child of compulsory school age who fails to attend school regularly, you are guilty of an offence.”

The court can fine each parent up to £1,000 per child, order payment of the prosecution costs and/or make a Parenting Order.

Please note that:

  • penalties and prosecutions are in respect of each parent for each child.
  • ‘Parent’ includes any person who is not a parent of the child but who has parental responsibility for the child (and applies whether or not that person lives with the child) or who has care of him/her.

These prosecutions are criminal proceedings and could result in you having a criminal record.

See below to download :

Leave of absence application form  & Home school contract.

Both forms require completion

Download Home School Contract
Download Leave in Term Time Request Form