Amendments to the 2006 regulations (April 2013) remove reference to extended leave. In the case of requests for extended trips, Headteachers should determine the number of school days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted.
If parents are considering visits to their country of family origin, they are encouraged to make them during school holiday periods.
Parents should be advised that:
- Any extended absence can be damaging to a child’s progress.
- The cumulative effect of periods of absence can seriously impact on a child’s educational achievement.
Where leave of absence is granted, the school may wish to consider a home/school contract, stating date of return, agreed and signed by the parent and Headteacher. A suggested format for the contract, which should be printed on school headed paper, is attached at Appendix 4. The school and the parent(s) should retain a copy of the contract.
Failure to agree a home/school contract or non-return by the agreed date may trigger a Penalty Notice (please refer to T & W code of conduct on Penalty Notices in relevant section of this guidance) and places the child at risk of losing his/her school place. Parents would then have to re-apply online for a school place via their ‘My Telford’ account at Telford & Wrekin Council following the school application procedures. This means that:
- the child may or may not be readmitted,
- parents may have to go to appeal which may or may not be successful,
- the child may have to go to another school.
In normal circumstances, requests for absence should be made to the school well in advance. In exceptional circumstances, e.g. family bereavement, families are still required to contact the school to request leave of absence.
This policy relates to all parents wishing to take their children on extended visits to their country of family origin or leave of absence for other exceptional circumstances.