The Telegraph is reporting that Nick Gibb has said children can’t have extra days off school, even after a funeral, because absence affects grades.
Nick Gibb warned that while pupils can have a day off to attend a funeral at the discretion of the headteacher, they are not allowed to take “extended holiday on the back of that funeral”.
Speaking on Radio 4’s Today programme Mr Gibb said: “The rules say you can’t take leave from school during term time except in exceptional circumstances.
“If it’s something like a funeral or something, then the head teacher would be able to give permission to attend the funeral, but not to have an extended holiday on the back of that funeral or other compassionate circumstances.”
He warned that taking just one week off during term time can impact a child’s GCSE grades and said that fewer children are absent from school following tough new rules on days off.
Mr Gibb added: “We tightened the rules, the rules have always been the case that you should not take time out of terms to go on holiday, but there was an impression given that every parent was entitled to two weeks leave to take a child on holiday…”
Do you agree with Nick Gibb’s interpretation of what does and does not constitute exceptional circumstances?
Should a grieving child be allowed more time off than a day for funeral?
More generally, are there any heads who appreciated the harder line being taken by the government, not just because it should result in better attendance, but also because they will be put in fewer difficult situations having to make decisions over individual cases and justifying these to parents?
Please let us know in the comments or via Twitter…
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