Posted on 4th May 2015 at 3:14pm
Unfair Government School Term Holiday Ban
The school ban, which was brought in by former Education Secretary Michael Grove, has become one of the most hated decisions by the Conservative party. It stopped parents from taking their children out of school during term time for a cheaper holiday.
For parents who ignore the ban to try and give their children a family holiday during term time will face a fine of £60 per child. This has angered many English parents as they feel it is unfair and does not take into account the rise in price of holidays outside of school term.
Common Sense Needed
Many MPs and councilors have said the ban needs to be looked at while travel experts have said the Government did not look at the ban properly when it became law. The ban has caused parents hardship when children are off school with travel agents increasing the price of a holiday to gain even more profit. This practice is forcing thousands of families to miss out on a holiday, meaning many children have never been away with their parents. Now, parents are fighting back and fighting back in a big way.
We have been out and about speaking to parents about the school ban, and the feeling of anger is high. However, on a positive note, parents seem to be fighting back.
Many parents are angry that they are fined for taking their children out of school for a cheaper holiday, but schools are allowed to close during term time for teacher training. A lot of the parents we spoke to said it did not make any sense, and we have to agree. Some parents have said they are seriously thinking of seeking legal advice to recover the cost for their children being out of school during term time due to teacher training.
A parent from Yorkshire said: “The ban is disgusting. Holiday prices increase when children are off school. This year is the first time since the ban we are going on holiday. I have told the school if they give me a fine I will be seeking legal advice about issuing a fine of my own over teacher training days.”
Another parent from Manchester said: “When teachers decide to train during term time instead of doing it in all the holidays they have, it costs me money. The school my daughter goes to feels it is ok, but when I want to take my child out of school for a cheap holiday I receive a fine.”
Teacher Training Days
Many parents have said it costs them money when teachers have training days during term time. With the cost of finding a child-minder or a parent having to take a day off work, it does seem the government and schools are making their own rules up to suit themselves.
Some parents we spoke to said they have warned their school if they try and give them a fine they would seek legal advice about claiming back costs over teacher training days. By what we have been told, the threat of legal action does work with some schools.
If a parent does decide to take their school to court with the aim to recover the money they have to pay out and they won, then the government could be forced to compensate parents. The compensation could run into tens of millions of pounds, which is a good reason why David Cameron should look at the school ban again and relax it.
It would only take one parent to move forward and create a test case against schools closing during term time for a teacher-training day. The question does stand, why do schools with all the holidays they have decide to have a teacher training day during term time if education is so important?
We know that things are not always black & white and our article may have a tendency to oversimplify things. However, it seems to us that a bit of real understanding and compromise on the part of the UK Government might go a long way to showing the real ‘common working man touch’ which most politicians seem to crave.