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Fines Issued To Parents For Term-Time Holidays

Thursday March 13 2014

THE council issued 117 fines to parents who took their children on a term-time holiday during the autumn.

It comes after tougher regulations were introduced by the government last September in a bid to curb absences. Now, any requests for term-time holidays are at the headteacher's discretion.

Barnsley Council, who issued 117 £60 fines to parents during last year's autumn term from September to December, has a panel to review and check all fines. So far, 69 of those notices had been paid.

A council spokesperson said: "If you have taken your child on holiday in during term without the school's consent you will receive a fine of £60 per child.

"If the fine is not paid within 21 days it is increased to £120, and will need to be paid within 28 days. If the fine is not paid then court action can be taken."

Do you think this is unfair? Should parents have the right to take their kids out of school for holidays? Have you been fined? Have your say below.

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Reply Posted by amy on Thursday March 13 2014 at 13:57
If your child has good attendance they shouldn't get fined if I get a fine this yr I will not pay as my children have good attendance y punish parents that can only afford to go away during term time

Reply Posted by anon on Thursday March 13 2014 at 14:17
I am taking my child on holiday in term time. I will request the time off and if its rejected then I will pay the £60 fine. Because in comparison to how much it would cost to take my children in the school holidays £60 isn't a lot. I would be paying £800 more on the holiday. Which is unaffordable even though both me and my partner work!

Reply Posted by Deb on Thursday March 13 2014 at 18:01
The fine is issued to both parents. So not £60, it's £120

Reply Posted by Jenni on Thursday March 13 2014 at 14:21
I think you should have an allowance of say 2 weeks over the year, no more than 1 week in a term. That way it means people can still take advantage of the cheaper holidays. Holiday companies are currently missing out on term time bookings and it is just pushing the prices of school holiday breaks higher and higher. I will be taking my children out of school next year and will pay if I have to because I will save over £1,000 going in the term....so £60 a child will not put me off! I will be collecting home work for the children to complete whilst they are away :)

Reply Posted by zoey boast on Thursday March 13 2014 at 14:24
I think its against our human right as parents to be held to ransom and black mailed into paying 3 times the rate in school holidays buy holiday companies. The governent have no clue on family life when both parents work its so hard to get time off together so i leave it at the holiday companies doors to change.

Reply Posted by sarah on Thursday March 13 2014 at 14:25
I think it's ridiculous that parents get fined when taking there children away in term time as long as they're not missing important weeks like sats or anything and have good attendance it shouldn't matter, I'm a single mum and will be taking my son away during term time as I refuse to pay near enough double in the holidays, I work hard all year making sure he doesn't miss school takes part in after school clubs and think that parents should be able to treat their kids without it crippling them financially, I think the council and schools should be accommodating as I know from my own experience that a child feels punished and left out when they can't go away and there friends do, I for one won't let that happen for my son, Im a single working parent and it takes me a while to save up so I will take him out of school if it saves me over £400.

Reply Posted by Michelle on Thursday March 13 2014 at 14:33
i reckon caravan sites etc should not be able to charge an arm and a leg so that people aren't having to book through term time.

Reply Posted by Ackerman on Thursday March 13 2014 at 16:15
Its called supply and demand Michelle, often increased prices during summer and high season make up for the losses during the cheaper times of year. But i do agree with your post.

Reply Posted by anon on Thursday March 13 2014 at 16:23
Blame the holiday companies send the bill to them

Reply Posted by me on Thursday March 13 2014 at 16:24
It is wrong they can charge, the government said they would make holiday companies reduce prices and fine parents for taking children out in term time, they have only brought the part in to charge parents and not reduce prices. Not only is it charged at £60 per week per child but each parent is charged so for parents of 2 children to take 2 weeks off would be £480.

Reply Posted by pc on Thursday March 13 2014 at 16:52
The way I see it is everybody is out to make money. All the council have done is cash in on the holiday season.

Reply Posted by jr on Thursday March 13 2014 at 17:04
And what happens to the money collected from the fines ?

Reply Posted by S,h on Thursday March 13 2014 at 17:05
I work 12 to 14 hour shifts starting between 1-3 in the morning and can't afford the prices they charge in school holidays,but I need a holiday to recharge a spend quality time with my two kids so I will take them out of school,the fines are on place to punish the working class

Reply Posted by bagged off on Thursday March 13 2014 at 18:18
Why do both parents have to pay, do they chase up the dad who walked out years ago, I doubt it very much. No the family that stays together, bring their kids up the right way are hit in the pocket because it is the easiest way to make money. I also bet they don't chase after parents for money for the kids that can't be bothered to go to school, no they will give them a parenting course. What about parents that can't take time off in school holidays are they to be punished too.

Reply Posted by AlanB on Thursday March 13 2014 at 19:10
From reading the posts in this thread it is clear that many people failed to attend school on a regular basis. Do the right thing by your children - give them a good education and make sure that they attend school throughout term time. A good education is the best possible thing that a parent can give to their offspring.

Reply Posted by nobby on Thursday March 13 2014 at 19:48
your right alan b a good education well you wont get it in barnsley the education authourity in barnsley is like the football team holding everybody up.now if you realy love your kids parents go learn a trade thats needed abroad australia ect and get the hell out.

Reply Posted by T on Friday March 14 2014 at 11:32
I disagree 'Nobby', I'm a Barnsley lad. Went to Holgate, Barnsley College and then on to Hudderfield University and graduated with a First class degree. It's the parents and the up bringing that's the problem. Don't be too quick to slate the educational system.

Reply Posted by David Hudson on Friday March 14 2014 at 18:18
I'm with you ' T ', my son went to Holgate School and Barnsley College Sixth Form too, then onto Durham and Bristol Universities where he gained a PhD in Chemistry and now earns a small fortune in California, USA. Let's not generalise about education in Barnsley, the schools can only do their best with what the receive and far too many of the children don't get the best of support or discipline at home or from their parents. Let's agree that ALL (ie both parties) could do better.

Reply Posted by nobby on Friday March 14 2014 at 18:42
so you are saying a life in barnsley beats the life changing opportunities abroad in a place like australia.you remind me of the smoker who smoked since he was a lad and lived to be 90 a one of compared to the majority you see the educationround here is geared to fail most after all whose going to work in the factory or behind the cash till.edna sutton was on a salary of over 1000,000 per annum she subsidised her husbands business in america whilst turning out kids who couldnt read or write .

Reply Posted by nobby on Friday March 14 2014 at 18:44
david hudson youve put my point across better than i could my daughter is a student nurse when she graduates iam packing her bags for her.

Reply Posted by Jo on Thursday March 13 2014 at 20:22
Makes my blood boil this does.its ok 4 the teachers to go on strike next week.which results me takin a day of work.maybe they should pay my wages they don't think like that do they.n teacher training days don't they get enough time of 4 them 2 do that.y should this be done in term time.makes me laugh.

Reply Posted by Nik on Friday March 14 2014 at 04:38
I wish someone could afford to take teachers to court when they go on strike , like the earlier post said we have to take a days holiday or take a day off to look after our children when they randomly go on strike yet if we take our children out of school we get punished , please someone who is well off take them to court, one rule for one and another for us lowly paid mothers who are trying are best to survive and kp are children happy

Reply Posted by Delta on Friday March 14 2014 at 06:24
Teachers teach your children, they pave the future and get pitence for it, we should support them in fighting for their rights. The government is winning in turning the public against teachers!, nhs staff, fire fighters etc. you'll all be crying when you have to pay for education because its been privatised!!!.

And I'm taking my children out if school for a holiday, but I'm not informing the school therefore the school cannot fine me

Reply Posted by nobby on Friday March 14 2014 at 07:18
pay related turn out crap get paid crap turnout quality get paid well.

Reply Posted by Rubydoo on Friday March 14 2014 at 11:16
Feel sorry for the young families being ripped off at holiday times.
We wanted to take our grandaughters to the East coast in a cottage, a week in July before schools break up £600, the weeks when schools are on holiday in July/August £900!!
Needs sorting!

Reply Posted by baz on Monday March 17 2014 at 18:09
so does it work both ways when the school shut due to reasons like snow or striking teachers and the teacher training days can we get £60 a time for these

Reply Posted by Big bad bob on Monday March 17 2014 at 18:10
I went to Kingstone, went on holiday in term time almost every year apart from my exam years, it never affected me as my parents also interacted with us at home and whilst on holidays. I now earn a good living and I think it's down to my upbringing just as much as my education.

Reply Posted by craig on Monday March 17 2014 at 18:34
Teacher training days are outside the alloted teaching time. This fine is a government iniative - not put in place by schools

Reply Posted by Betty on Monday March 17 2014 at 19:20
I got charged £180 for taking my kids on a £400 holiday in January.
The only time my husbands holidays were granted.
Not everyone can get leave from work during school holidYs and this is so unfair.
We can't afford to take our children abroad or during non term time.
Our budget was already pushed to the max.
Looks like no more holidays for my children especially as my 4th starts full time in September too so out fine will be £240 next year which half of what we pay for our accommodation.
Hope the makes of this rule are happy because my kids won't be. Try explain the reason to them mr Cameron, see if u still think it's ok to punish working class people.
Don't smoke or drink, save as much money as we can all year for the one week uk holiday. Now can't even do that. Migh as well start taking drugs and become a drunk so we can afford to take our kids away, cheap and free food, warm more on benefits than the poor wage my husband gets, free school meals, trips and after school activities, free guitar lessons free milk, free travel free bloody everything and keep benefit money and dla caters allowance ect to spend on drugs and booze. Not to mention the extra I'd get off the government to support my alcohol addiction.
Makes me do flaming mad.

Reply Posted by jim on Monday March 17 2014 at 20:18
Betty steady yourself down girl.

I get all benefits and free everything and guess what. I bloody luv it..hhhaaahaahahahhahahaah

Reply Posted by anon on Monday March 17 2014 at 20:42
Jim the idiot

Reply Posted by anon on Monday March 17 2014 at 20:41
What would happen Betty if you said you can't afford to pay the fine? They can't get blood out of a stone and yes you do deserve a holiday with your kids.

Reply Posted by jim on Monday March 17 2014 at 20:55
I take my kids to skeggy in our own caravan and phone school daily to say kids ill.. happy benefits days.. hahahah

Reply Posted by anon on Monday March 17 2014 at 21:07
High hopes for your kids then jim. Skeggy! Caravan! Benefits life and to cap it all telling lies whilst not getting educated! What an example you set.

Reply Posted by jim on Monday March 17 2014 at 22:19
anon my kids have a great education and we also have a great life on benefits.. it pays to work my arse.. happy benefits days.

Reply Posted by anon on Monday March 17 2014 at 22:25
Nar..... Great life jim? Skeggy for hols in a caravan? Ah well,if youve set your sights so low and it makes you happy then so be it. I want a bit more from my life though. If you can work you should and strive for better for you and your family.

Reply Posted by Kimberley on Tuesday March 18 2014 at 07:50
anon@ You sound a right pigheaded person. Thousands holiday in caravans every year inc myself and family. We have great jobs but love the seaside with the kids. So you want a bit more out of life and wouldn.t stoop that low.

WAKE UP YOU FOOL! the kids faces when we arrive at the seaside are such a picture and the enjoyment there get is priceless.

Reply Posted by pc on Monday March 17 2014 at 22:46
Holiday Tax ?

Reply Posted by Maxine on Tuesday March 18 2014 at 07:25
Yes it stinks. However, don't forget you can get a decent chunk off the price of your holiday by just setting off or coming back 2 or 3 days before/after the schools break up or start back...... perfectly plausible for a stomach bug to affect the entire family for 2 or 3 days & a phone call from Spain doesn't cost half as much as a term time holiday or fine.... ahem.

Reply Posted by Brenda Davies on Monday July 14 2014 at 10:01
I am a retired teacher(UK) /headmistress (in Africa). I wished the parents of my puplis a happy holiday when they requested time off for their children, because I know how short and precious is the time children enjoy doing fun things with parents. Many parents have to work so hard for minimum wages and are tired out at the end of the day. Holidays together are good investment in the stability and emotional health of the family unit.
I gave a minimum of homework for the children to do and I myself ensured they caught up with any new topic missed in maths. Teachers have more time with kids than parents, who pay through their taxes for teachers to do their job. The idea of fining parents for taking their children on holiday, not attending meetings, checking homework I find utterly appalling. We need to wrap a blanket of security around young families, not stress them out by telling them they must "support" the teacher by effectively telling them to do their job for them!
This dictatorial attitude of government I find disturbing and needs to be curbed before it goes even further and we find ourselves deprived of the freedom we used to be so proud of in this country. This move was not one reached through democratic process. When did we hear of this intention to take away what was enshrined in law (that parents are responsible for their children's education) during any election campaign?
The point has also been well made, that a sick child (e.g .my grandson who missed nearly half a term through illness and still excels in maths and English!!) will certainly not suffer academically for the sake of a week or two on holiday. However, a child whose parents are harassed by teacher, school, LEA and police and court certainly will suffer emotionally and psychologically on account of the agitation and distress caused by this intrusive "bullying" attitude of those voted in by us to serve us.
It is time for honesty and common sense to prevail and I hope parents stand up for the right to take their children on holiday. There is (or should be) more to life
than school for little children. Children and parents and teachers are getting more and more stressed out by the government's interference in education. Let children have their childhood!