Mum fined for child’s term time holiday says she learnt more in Spain

A mum has hit out at a school after being fined for taking her daughter on holiday during school term time.

The woman claims her child learnt more in Spain than she would have done in her classes.

And, mum Bekki even noted that the £60 fine was far less than the extra she would have spent going on a trip during the holidays.

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Apparently, her little girl learnt about the Spanish language and culture while on holiday – something she wouldn’t have been taught about at school.

Bekki noted on Facebook that her family had needed a break after the disruption of the past few years, reported HullLive.

The mum said: “She learnt so much about Spanish culture, learnt some Spanish and tried lots of new foods. Secondly the £60 fine didn’t come close to the savings I made.

“I wouldn’t have been able to go if not during term time.”

Commenting on Facebook, another mum said she was being taken to court for taking her child out of school. She refused to pay the fine, she said, because she tried to get permission to go away but her child’s school never replied.

Dad Steven Nelson said he was fined £120 for taking his two sons out of school for a week in June. He said: “Saved nearly a thousand pound on the price of the holiday it would have cost me if I took them during the summer holidays.

“Will carry on doing so as it’s still much cheaper even with the fine.”

In Hull alone, 34 parents were prosecuted and 937 received fixed penalty notices in 2021-22, 610 to parents of primary age children and 327 to those of secondary school pupils. A total of £33,660 in fines were netted during the same period.

Cllr Linda Tock, Hull City Council’s education portfolio holder, said: “I was really surprised that the number of fines has gone up so much in recent years. The issue is that some schools tend to be accommodating of parents and holidays and they’ll look at a child’s attendance record.

“Others will just resort to a fine straight away, so there’s a disparity there. What I’d say to parents is that they really should speak to their child’s school to work something out that’s best for everyone."

She added: “There could be several reasons for people taking their children out of school for holidays, but it’s the law that children have to be in school and the local authority has to enforce that.

“I think there’s a conversation to be hand about the travel market and pricing. But the trouble is that if the time of holidays was moved they would just change the prices. If we try and change things the market would just change too.”

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Councils can issue Fixed Penalty Notices worth £60 per parent, rising to £120 if not paid within 28 days.

Parents who fail to pay after 28 days can be taken to court.


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